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“A True Delight”

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Zao Onsen Tsuruya Hotel
Ranked #7 of 87 Hotels / Ryokan in Yamagata
Reviewed 23 September 2013

My son, wife and I wanted to experience a traditional Japanese hotel... this hotel completely exceeded expectations. We were warmly greeted and escorted to our room where we were served tea. The same woman later served us dinner and breakfast in a private room. This continuity enhanced our comfort. The staff are Japanese speaking and my son acted as interpreter. I would certainly be comfortable going without an "interpreter, but that did make it easier.
Our Japanese style room was spacious and attractively decorated. It had large slider windows which made it easy to let in the cool mountain air and enjoy an unobstructed view of the valley below. The hotel staff arranged our bedding while we were at dinner.
We purchased a package which included dinner and breakfast. My only additional cost was for beer and Sake with dinner. We were served a delightfully elaborate and delicious Japanese meal. Our server was very patient and good humored in helping us to know the order in which to eat the meal and which sauce to use with each food items. Breakfast was similarly elaborate.
After dinner my wife and I enjoyed a soak in a private onsen room which was open to the night air. What luxury. We visited in September so we were too early for the leaves to have changed. But, the cool mountain air and a hike at the Zao Crater were great.

Room Tip: I encourage Westerners to stay in a Japanese style room. This hotel completely met my best hopes and...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank DLF_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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10 - 16 of 74 reviews

Reviewed 15 March 2013

My wife and I stayed at this hotel early January and the staff were extremely helpful and polite despite our inability to speak their language. The rooms were very clean and comfortable, the food was fantastic and the private onsets are a real luxury. We were there to ski and were surprised at how few skiers were on the mountain. We hope to return next year.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank D J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2013

What a find this place is. This traditional Japanese Inn or Ryokan is situated at the end of a long winding bus trip up a mountain in Yamagata. The scenery is breathtaking with thick blankets of snow covering everything. The place had a magical wonderland feel about it.
We arrived late in the afternoon and were met by two very enthusiastic older gentlemen who greeted us very warmly and immediately took our luggage to the hotel which is situated right opposite the bus station. All the staff at this hotel are incredibly kind and caring and although English was rather sparse they endeavoured to help us as best they could.
The lobby of the hotel contains a souvenir shop and vending machines are situated throughout the hotel just incase you feel like a coffee or beer during the night.
The room was spacious and comfortable and was situated on the top floor. The heating worked very well and helped create the snuggly atmosphere inside while the snow fell outside. The view of the hills and valley were spectacular. The ski slopes are conveniently close by.
We immediately went for a soak in one of the Onsen or hot spas that are situated within the hotel which also have their own great views.
After the spa, and wearing our "Yukata" we had dinner in our own private dinning room (on a different floor to our hotel room).
The food was amazing and delicious if you are into Japanese cuisine. There was so much we had trouble finishing it.
The next morning was similar with breakfast served in our own private dining room and again it was fantastic. The staff were always very attentive.
After, we booked a private spa and enjoyed the hot waters all to ourselves.
We have promised ourselves that next time we will stay longer to really enjoy this pampered experience.

Room Tip: Our room faced the bus station and had magnificent views down the valley. Get a top floor room if po...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Perth_AustraliaFotis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 September 2012 via mobile

The Onsen town is beautiful with lots of nearby facilities, inns, and restaurants. You can enjoy the view of Zao mountain from your room. The hotel has different hot spring baths with milky sulfuric water that has a PH value of close to 1, leaving your skin feeling soft and silky after soaking. You will enjoy the lovely nature's view at the Zao huge outdoor bath which is about 5 minutes drive from the hotel. The room was clean & spacious. The staffs were very friendly .
The accommodation fee was reasonable and the food was healthy and delicious.
You can have access to a bullet train for Tokyo at Kaminoyama station, the nearest station to the hotel.

  • Stayed: August 2012
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Thank Sarudoshi
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Reviewed 27 November 2011

My family has been skiing in japan every winter for two decades, and Zao Onsen offers the most scenic powder of them all. We stayed at Tsuruya for a week and everyone gained at least 5 pounds due to the great food (the portions are big, and you just can't stop eating...). The 5 different onsen private rooms are great for families. The owner's family and staff treats visitors very personally like their own dear friends. We had a little car accident with our rented car and they gave us huge help getting things sorted out all along. I just cannot recommend Tsuruya highly enough.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank W00i
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 December 2009

The hotel is right across from bus station and Tourist info centre. I was afraid it'd be noisy, but it wasn't. Very convenient location, easy access to ski lifts and ropeways - if too far for you to walk, they'd ferry you there on their van or bus, FOC! Plus, they'll pick you up too-within the stated hours. Mr Muruyama speaks good English, and those who can't are always helpful. Nice family-run place, everyone can be porter, driver, and has all the patience of a good host. Many little shops nearby, all walking distance. Our extended family of 19 ranging from 18 months to 70 years old thoroughly enjoyed the hotel and great snow!

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled with family
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2  Thank pkt_mudskipper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile
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Stayed: January 2018, travelled with friends
Thank fwfwfw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Zao Onsen Tsuruya Hotel

Address: 710 Zao-onsen, Yamagata 990-2301, Yamagata Prefecture
Region: Japan > Tohoku > Yamagata Prefecture > Yamagata > Zao Onsen
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 87 Hotels / Ryokan in Yamagata
Price Range: £103 - £279 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Zao Onsen Tsuruya Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 41
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