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“My first ryokan experience was partially what I expected”
Review of Yoshiike Ryokan

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Yoshiike Ryokan
Los Altos, California
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“My first ryokan experience was partially what I expected”
Reviewed 30 June 2014

I was surprised that for a ryokan, they had Wifi access and a T.V. in our rooms. I guess it's to be expected these days. We also had a Western bathroom in each room which worked well for my kids who were not going to try the public baths. The ryokan also has individual baths in the public bath area. That is, there's a small private room that has a stool and a hand spray for washing before going into your own bath. The onsen was wonderful. There were two in the women's area, both outdoors with nice surroundings and each of different temperature. It was a nice way to relax after a day of sightseeing. In hindsight, I would have arrived at the ryokan earlier so that I could the onsen before and after dinner.

As mentioned in many of the other reviews, the garden at the ryokan was quite beautiful and expansive. It was nice to wander along the various paths in the kimono robes and slippers that the ryokan provided.

The dinner and breakfast were amazing. Every dish was so well presented. Although we didn't recognize many of the dishes, they were all very tasty and in some cases, very interesting like one dish that included a small squid. A very nice dining experience overall.

The facilities at the ryokan could benefit from an update. Some areas were dirty from wear over the years and there's not much by way of decoration in the halls. The room doors are made of steel which made closing the doors a bit noisier than if they were made of wood and it made the place feel a bit more "institutionalized".

Room Tip: Request a room with a private bath if you don't want to use the public bath Try to use the onse...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank FromLosAltos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Phnom Penh
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 April 2014

The hotel seems to be going through a transition. Beautiful gardens all around, and a lovely outdoor onsen (for women at least, but I imagine the men's is just as nice). We also had some good massages, which you can book for before or after the onsen. Excellent, even exceptional food and a gorgeous, remodeled dining room overlooking the indoor garden. Everyone comes to dine in kimono/yukata that are provided for you so the place has a lovely, traditional feel even though the dining room is modern. The dinners are 10 courses of just exquisitely prepared Japanese and Japanese/Western fusions....just beautiful! Much of the rest of the hotel needs an upgrade and/or renovation. The lobby is sad and old, and my first impression of the hotel was that I had made a mistake in booking it online. The carpet and wallpaper in the hallways needs to be replaced, and there are oddly placed slot machines in the lobby of the onsen area that are noisy and make the place look cheap and tasteless. The tatami twin room we had was traditional and nice, spacious, but again it seemed very old and in need of an upgrade. In general, I would recommend the hotel, we had a nice first entry into the ryokan onsen experience, but recommend a renovation and a removal of the slot machines to the management!

Room Tip: Make sure you have a gorgeous garden view!
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
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1 Thank anonymous a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 10 April 2014 via mobile

It may look a little dated on the outside but the rooms are authentic Japanese. Given robes and slippers to walk around in like the Japanese. Amazing garden and with cherry blossoms looking so beautiful - very peaceful. The springs are authentic as well women in one and men in the other, bathing is naked, uncomfortable at first but then becomes quite freeing. Food served is again authentic and gives you a great experience of taste sensations.
Ryokan is well worth the experience and most enjoyable

Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Sharon v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Poplar, null, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2014

oh dear - we hated it! We booked for two nights and left after the first (even though we had to pay a 50% cancellation fee)- our room was terrible - stains on the carpet, filthy fridge, wallpaper peeling off the walls - the dining room was depressing - reminded me of a school canteen. The dream of japanese onsen bathing was soon ruined by rude staff.

I read the reviews and asked for a garden view room - but it mostly overlooked other hotels and ryokans.

I've read the fantastic reviews from other people with astonishment - maybe it's us - but if you are anything like us (want to appreciate other cultures but expect value for money) then approach with caution and only book for one night. Perhaps find a smaller ryokan with a more intimate feel - this place is very large and outdated (but not in a traditional charming Japanese way - more in a seedy 70s motel way).

Room Tip: Our room was on the 3rd floor - garden view -we overlooked other hotels/ryokans perhaps a lower floo...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank Claire B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Hakone-machi hotels

New York City, New York
Level 5 Contributor
81 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 April 2014

Yoshiike was a wonderful stay. I highly recommend a visit for the ohnsen, magnificent garden grounds and elaborate kaiseki style dinner. The garden is very expansive, and wraps around also to the back of the property so make sure to go on all the foot trails. While the staff may not speak English well, communicating was not an issue and everyone was extremely hospitable.

Rooms: The rooms admittedly are a bit dated, but was still a comfortable stay in terms of sleep. If you are sensitive to smell, I would recommend a nonsmoking room. Although, if you want the meal served in room (which I highly recommend), you have to choose a Japanese-style room (in which case nonsmoking rooms do not exist, they simply spray the room). The bathroom area and entrance area, while clean, can use some better air freshening, it smelled a bit stale and was my biggest gripe with the room. But I simply showered at the ohnsen so didn’t need to make use of the room facilities much. Also after opening the windows to the garden to let in the fresh air, it was quite a better ambiance. Before coming I kept wondering if the additional $ for the garden view was going to be worth it? And I say it is, the fact when you get a huge window view to grounds and hear the running stream felt very peaceful.

Meal: If you are not as adventurous of an eater, or used to Asian foods, you may not enjoy the full meal. But I am a lover of all foods, and from new York so very open to all types of cuisine. While the food is not the best meal I ever had, the presentation and ceremony of it was top notch. I highly enjoyed it and my husband was wowed by the experience. (A LOT of food, there are several course to dinner and can take 2 hours to get through)

Ohnsen: Etiquette—shower thoroughly before getting into the ohnsen. I am as shy as it gets, but you must respect the beauty and culture of the Japanese ohnsen. It opens at 4am and closes as late as midnight. Do not dip the privacy towel into the ohnsen, instead wrap it on your head as you sit in the water. I went once before dinner and once before breakfast.

Gardens: Make sure to save time for an early morning walk around the grounds, it’s absolutely gorgeous and extremely zen.

Location: I took the Romance car from Tokyo, Shinjuku. It was about $40/pp round trip and I felt completely worthwhile. It got us there in about 45 mins without transfers. There is a more local route / train but will take about double the time and you have to transfer once, which is still probably very easy but as we only had a few days, we really valued our time in Japan. Once you get off the train you can walk towards the 7 eleven, there is a bridge / turn in on the same side of the road which leads you to Yoshiike. There is a sake / wine/ alcohol shop across the street.

Definitely would come again and stay for a restful retreat. I was only in Tokyo for 5 days and still made an easy trip out to Hakone. Highly recommend. Thank you Yoshiike for an authentic ohnsen and ryokan stay.

Room Tip: Garden view in spring is worth the added cost
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank travellingbug95
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Pole
Level 5 Contributor
16 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 December 2013

Words cannot express how much we enjoyed our stay here, but I'm gonna try anyways!

Location: This ryokan has that magic combination of convenience and quietness. With our big luggages, we decided to ride the local bus from the train station (100yen). It took all of 3 minutes, and walking (as we found out later) only took 10 minutes. It is across a little bridge on the other side of the creek, so it has virtually no traffic (unlike the main drag). A 10-minute downhill walk takes you back to the train station, so the walk pretty much covers the whole shopping street in town.

Room: We picked a garden view room, which overlooks the ryokan's expansive and well-maintained garden grounds. Since we asked for a higher floor, the view also includes the surrounding hills. The window is VERY clean, and its width span the wide side of the room, meaning the view was virtually panoramic. We enjoyed sitting by the window and savoring the tranquility so unique to Japanese gardens.

Hot Springs: Like most ryokans this place has separate facilities for the genders, so I can only review the men's side. There were 3 pools, one indoor (inside a greenhouse-type building) with jungle/forest decor and a waterfall, a small rocky one decorated like a cave, and the best one: the outdoor pond, which has a great view of the surrounding natural environment. It was so nice, we went twice, once during the day and again at night. There are also small hot springs rooms designed for families, with a private changing area, and a private pool/tub. This is first come first serve, no reservations required. Typical of Japan, the facilities are spotless, and the cleaning people were keeping things tidy the entire time I was there.

Room Service: Our reservation included a dinner and a breakfast, both served in our room. The dinner took about 1-2 hours, and was served course by course. We fell full by the end, but to be honest we had no idea what some of the things we ate were, since the serving lady cannot speak English. If you have a tablet, take advantage of the free wifi and pull up Google Translate. The breakfast was a lighter ordeal. All the courses were served at once and it was JUST AS DELICIOUS as the dinner! It was truly the quintessential Japanese experience: wearing traditional yukatas, enjoying a traditional kaiseki meal, in a traditional ryokan!

Amenities: The room has quite large, with a long entryway into the dining room, where there is a western style regular height dining table, a small bathroom (which a tub that's fed by the same hot springs water), and the tatami style side for the rest of the space. The bathroom has detailed explanation of the quality of the hot springs water, and although it was in Japanese, we at least understood that the water is never diluted and never reused.

Services: Typical of Japan, the service was exceptional as usual. The hotel staff takes you on a brief tour on the way to the room. When you get to your room, you know it's yours because they have already printed out your name (in Japanese) and placed it on the door. The dinner and breakfast were right on time and very professionally served, with the serving lady dressed in kimono, and the beddings were both spread out at night AND made in the morning by the hotel staff as well. At check out, the floor manager (it appears there's one on every floor, and they dressed differently than the cleaning staff) would get the elevator for you as soon as they see you coming down the corridor with your luggage. They even bow as the elevator closed! On the way out as we were getting into the taxi, the staff stood outside and bowed as our taxi pulled away.

OVERALL: This is, hands down, the most memorable stay for my entire life. From the meticulously-groomed grounds, to the tastefully-decorated room, to the luxurious hot springs facilities and the impeccable services, this is one of those experiences people come to Japan for. Of course there are even more luxurious options for a higher price, but this ryokan is the best you can find in Hakone and I promise you will leave satisfied that you've made the right choice.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank hkpuipui99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tel Aviv, Israel
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2013

We have just returned from a romantic trip to Japan.
Yoshiike Ryokan was the highlight of our trip.
We had a twin western room with a magnificent garden view.
Enjoyed each and every minute of our stay. Would highly recommend for a romantic getaway.

Room Tip: Ask for a high floor room, magnificent views.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Yonit_Harel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Yoshiike Ryokan

Property: Yoshiike Ryokan
Address: 597 Yumoto, Ashigarashimo-gun, Hakone-machi 250-0311, Kanagawa Prefecture
Region: Japan > Kanto > Kanagawa Prefecture > Ashigarashimo-gun > Hakone-machi > Hakoneyumoto Onsen
Hotel Style:
#22 Luxury Hotel in Hakone-machi
#31 Top resorts Hotel in Hakone-machi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Yoshiike Ryokan 4*
Number of rooms: 65
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Also Known As:
Yoshiike Ryokan Hotel Hakone-Machi

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