If you want the taste of a "traditional" Japanese inn (ryokan) and the convenience of a modern hotel, this hotel is for you. My family and I stayed here in the summer of 2013, and we enjoyed immensely. We stayed in a standard tatami room. it was very clean and provided plenty of room for 5 of us. The room had a private bath and toilet, two refrigerators (one for the guest use, the other contained drinks for purchase), and a tea set (hot-water pot, tea bags, little Japanese cakes). Our room on the 11th floor unfortunately was facing other buildings and we couldn't see much more than roof tops,
The hotel has three community baths, one of which is located on the roof. We only went to two of them, the rooftop one and the huge bath on the bottom floor. The rooftop one is a must-go. There are four little baths surrounded by separators, which provides a private-bath feel, and the view is breathtaking!!!
The best feature of the hotel for us was the caring staff. If you have a child with multiple food allergies, you must know how difficult it is to travel and eat out. The staff and restaurant chef were so accommodating to our daughter's dietary needs, and we were very grateful that they went over and beyond to prepare meals for her. I had given the chef all the items our daughter needed to avoid, and before the dinner, the chef showed me the menu and all the ingredients he had put into each dish. Our daughter was able to enjoy a traditional ryokan-style full-course" dinner! It was just amazing to see the creativity of the chef and concerns of the staff!!!
There are a lot of things to do on the property (karaoke, arcade, spa, etc.) as well as in the vicinity of the hotel (Nikko Edo Wonderland, Tobu World Square, Kinugawa boat ride, etc.). We only had time to go to Nikko Edo Wonderland, but it was only about 15 min away from the hotel by a taxi (I think it was about 2,000 yen, approx $20, for 5 of us). You can also take a bus, which stops at all the attractions on its route.
I have a coupled of suggestions for the hotel, however. One is that the hotel could provide a shuttle bus from Kinugawa Onsen train station. We arrived at the station after 6:00 pm because we were sightseeing Nikko Toshogu (Tokugawa Shogun's shrine). There are public buses that go around the area hotels, but by that time, the frequency of the bus was one every hour and we had to take a taxi (about 2,000 yen, I think). I also wish they had their "smoking hut" in a different location. Because it was located on the same floor as the restaurants (4th), and the structure of the hotel is "hollow" (i.e., guest rooms surrounding the atrium, like Embassy Suites), we could definitely smell the smoke throughout the hotel. It was quite unpleasant for our asthmatic daughter and the rest of us non-smokers.
All in all, I would definitely recommend this hotel. I hope our family is able to go back there again in the near future.
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- Also Known As:
- Asaya Hotel Nikko
- Asaya Onsen Hotel Nikko