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“Peaceful Onsen”
Review of Takinoya

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Takinoya
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 12, 2013 via mobile

Takinoya is one of the best onsen I had visited. It sells its rooms with full board dinner and breakfast. The room is spacious and equipped with all the amentities. All its windows are overlooking the lushy outdoor greenery. There is an in-room bath tub with the same green scenery. Onsen was great with choice of outdoor (level 5) and indoor pools. The onsen water originates from a nearby sulfur spring. The sulfur smell was quite heavy around the onsen area. The dinner and breakfast were served at their restaurant. Offerings were exquisite and tasty traditional Japanese cuisine. There was no wifi in the room, but the hotel offered free wifi in its lounge. Free coffee and tea were also available in the lounge. The price for the full board was quite steep (~350 USD per person), but a reasonable price to pay for such luxurious enjoyment. Takinoya is a must-experience for onsen lovers.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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1  Thank wmloke13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 9, 2013

After finding the property via the "Ryokan Collection" website, my wife and I stayed for 3 nights at the modern, high-end ryokan in Noboribetsu in early June.

Since the price is high even for a normal room is high, I recommend as we did to fully splurge and get one of the large suites with your own private sulfur onsen/hot bath. Our suite was perhaps 1000 square feet with a separate dining are where all breakfasts and meals were served, sleeping area, large bathroom, etc. Had we been in a standard room w/o a private onsen and eaten in the "public" dining rooms, our overall experience might have been more normal than very special.

Service was immaculate as we had hoped. Our personal "girl" knew little English but was extremely pleasant and tried very hard to explain all of the various food offerings to us each day.

We ended up doing the Japanese breakfast each morning over the Western breakfast which I would recommend unless you choose not to be adventurous in the morning with fish, miso soup, roe, etc. All three breakfasts had 10+ small plates but while certainly fully after completing, we didn't especially think we had overeaten. Coffee is offered after each breakfast.

Dinners were extraordinary if you are amenable to traditional Japanese and you will feel very full each night. Great sashimi, interesting vegetables, grilled fish, tempura, and even when night nice small steak dish with asparagus. An older woman who appeared to be the equivalent of head of customer service/dining for the ryokan met us each morning and asked in very good English how our stay was going and what special foods we liked and pretty much all of our requests (eggplant, tofu, fish, etc) were presented in a creative way in subsequent meals. We had sake during each meal (pretty cheap < $10 for 180 ml) after starting our happy hour earlier with satisfactory and cheap Trader Joes quality wine purchased from the nearby 7-11. The bar at the ryokan only opens between 20:30 and midnight and felt more like where the Japanese men hung out vs. husband and wives and was near the "smoking room" so we passed on it.

Note about wifi - it's fairly weak and only available in a common lounge area and not in the room.

We did a few day adventures during our stay. First, I would highly recommend a short hike up the Hell Valley area including the geyser lake and natural hot spring foot bath. The map makes it seem to be a longer hike than it really is so provided you are able to hike up some small hills, it is certainly worth the effort. On the 2nd day, we borrowed the "electric" aided bikes to bike to Lake Kuraca. While we enjoyed it, you need to realize that the battery for the bikes won't make it all of the way and be prepared for some intense hills and the need to likely walk your bike a bit.

We did as recommended by the ryokan staff go to the 8:30 PM "fireshow" one night (note - not firework) - free event run by the local village. Overall - only do this if you have some time on your hand since it's just ok and probably the time would have been better spent soaking more in the onsen.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank rogerslb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 25, 2013

My wife and I stayed at Takinoya for one night during March. The service was top notch. Our package included dinner and breakfast. We were travelling to Noboribetsu from Asahikawa via Sapporo and were running late for dinner as it was usually served at 7pm. We called the front desk and were assured that they would wait for us. We arrived around 7:30pm and was greeted by a member of the staff who spoke perfect English as he introduced us to the ryokan and its facilities.

After we settled in, we went to the dining area to have dinner. We had a private room with a great view of the garden outside. Our friendly hostess brought each of the many courses out and explained what they were to us. The variety was amazing. We were so full after dinner and breakfast the next day. They even prepared a fruit cocktail for us to celebrate our honeymoon, which was a nice touch.

After dinner, we went to the baths. There are 2 types of baths, the one on the fourth floor or the ones in B2. The one on the fourth floor is an open air bath overlooking the trees near the ryokan. The B2 baths had one outdoor bath and three indoor ones. The outdoor baths were great, especially when the day was cold. It was very relaxing after a long day of travelling..

We had a Japanese style room AW and it was very spacious. The room had a very typical Japanese ryokan style setup. The wooden bath was big and the living room came with some Japanese snacks. The futons were so comfortable we fell asleep right away.

Takinoya is located near the popular tourist destination 'Jigokudani' or Hell's Valley. There are also some shops and eateries about 5 minutes from the ryokan. It takes about 15 minutes to get to Noboribetsu station by taxi.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and our only regret was that we only stayed for one night. At 59100 yen per night it wasn't cheap but we felt it was worth it. We'd definitely be back if we go back to Hokkaido.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ShionKai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2013

The best in Noboribetsu. Expensive but worth it!

The meals provided by the Ryokan were amazing and delicious. Onsen was fantastic too! We were there for 2 nights in April but surprisingly it was not crowded at all. Love the relaxing lounge too. Overall, it's one of the best onsen Ryokan during our japan trip.

  • Stayed: April 2013
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3  Thank GuestFromSg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2013

This is fine modern onsen ryokan with outstanding meals. The whole experience was very relaxing & peaceful with staff helpful & professional at all times. The service we experienced in February was excellent & couldn't be faulted.
Our room was beautifully appointed, modern sukiya style, with a horigotatsu (pit) seating area next to the balcony. The balcony overlooked the lovely Japanese garden and forested hillside, the balcony had seating also but it was below zero outside. The attached bathroom was very attractively designed and spacious with a great range of products. The ensuite cedar bathtub overlooking the garden used diluted onsen water.
General areas: the upper level rotemburo was magnificent & the water left my skin feeling like a baby's. There was no overpowering sulphur smell at all. It was magical relaxing in that dark space with the snow falling. Even when one or two other guests came in, it did not feel intrusive & the serenity remained.
There was a spa treatment area up there as well, you do need to book but they were open until late in the evening. The treatments were expensive.
The downstairs common lounge area was an attractive space with lovely garden views & very relaxing, with tea, coffee available, some books to read & music to listen to on the high end audio system. The fireplace that had been on in the afternoon was off in the evening- the only disappointment - especially given it was the middle of Winter, it was as if they didn't want to encourage people to linger there in the evening.
The bar was pleasant & a quiet spot to relax at night but drinks were expensive (Lots of aged whiskeys if you're into it.)
Dinner was outstanding, a high standard kaiseki meal using local specialities & not served in the room as is traditional at ryokan but served in semi-private dining rooms on the main floor.
Takinoya had an intimate feel although there were many other guests there. I found all staff courteous & warm at all times. Overall, I rate it highly & value for money spent in comparison with some of the other properties we've stayed at in Japan. We plan to return.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Elly M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2013

This is our second stay at Takinoya after having stayed there a night in December 2011. Our second stay was on a busier night (30th Dec), while the first stay was in the middle of December and much quieter. So I do understand if the staff are busier, more flustered, etc. However, this is still a luxury ryokan and my expectations surely, of its service, could not fall that much?

The ryokan is still beautiful as always. The onsen were delightful, very relaxing, very beautiful. The food - both dinner and breakfast - this time served in the room as we got a suite (Japanese suite type D I believe, with our own wooden onsen tub outdoors) - was very good, especially the breakfast, though I thought the dinner was not as good as the previous years'.

The room was great - there were three of us, so the third party had a western style room by herself and even that cheapest room at the ryokan is very nicely done, spacious.

However, the service was quite appalling. An elderly Japanese woman was assigned to serve us - she served us dinner, showed us our room etc, but her manner was that of impatience, and could not wait for us to finish our dinner. Each course of the dinner was brought out very hurridly, she cleared our tables in a very quick and clumsy fashion, having dropped a tray once, and very noisily. It was supposed to be a kaiseki dinner, slow and refined, but she wasn't that at all. I did not enjoy dinner partly because of her. Breakfast was alright as she merely laid out all the food and then left us to eat in peace, so I much enjoyed breakfast!

When we left, I know the staff - her - is supposed to wait outside until we drive away. Look, it's not that I'm cruel and expect her to bow and wave to us till we are out of sight. But it is the way they do it for all guests - and during all my stay at onsen ryokans, the staff would do that, till I feel bad for them, standing in the cold. But this woman - she merely stood there and bowed, said thank you, and while we were fiddling with the GPS to get to our next destination, she hurried inside the ryokan!!! What! Without eevn waving goodbye, etc.

I felt her service, her smiles - were all very insincere. They were really fake, and like as if she was not happy that we had stayed the night.

The other staff were ok - when we checked out and paid, our our luggage being helped into the ryokan by other staff - they were good, fine.

I'm not sure I'll return to Takinoya now after our second experience. I was looking forward to the stay so much and then having such cold service was a big let down.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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22  Thank areisende
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 25, 2012

Very nice modern-style Japanese spa resort ryokan with private tube at the balcony. The public spa (on-sen) at the basement of the hotel comprises a number of hot springs of different temp and minerals. The public spa is also great.
We stayed in a Japanese style suite with in door onset.... should try the one with an outdoor private onsen but at a price though.
Great service but the resort provides no shuttle services and you have to call you own taxi to and from the Noboribesu JR station if you are not driving.

Room Tip: should try the suite with outdoor onset
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank HKG_Traveller2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Takinoya

Address: 162 Noboribetsu Onsen, Noboribetsu 059-0551, Hokkaido
Location: Japan > Hokkaido > Noboribetsu > Noboribetsu Onsen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Spa
Hotel Style:
#1 Onsen Hotel in Noboribetsu
#1 Family Hotel in Noboribetsu
#1 Spa Hotel in Noboribetsu
Price Range: $568 - $1,077 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 30
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Takinoya Noboribetsu, Hokkaido

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