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“Wonderful experience... Worth the splurge for a special occasion”
Review of Hotel Shikisai

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Hotel Shikisai
Ranked #10 of 150 Hotels / Ryokan in Nikko
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 23 June 2014

The staff is very attentive... They confirmed my reservation for a room with a Pte onsen...but later found they had made a mistake. They gave me a room w a jacuzzi instead n a 10000yen discount!

The free bus tour helps... Pick up fr the Nikko jr station at the appointed 230pm and drove us to hotel. Next day...930am tour to the three beautiful waterfalls! Awesome!

Above that... Food was good... Both the dinner n the breakfast! :)

  • Stayed: June 2014
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Thank MonicaZenia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 27 May 2014

After comparing the various ryokans and hotels in the Greater Nikko area which was overwhelming as we didn't have sense of the lay of the land, we decided based on pictures, reviews and price to go for Shikisai Hotel. My wife & I don't know if other places are better but we certainly were very pleased with our choice.

We went from Haneda Airport straight to Nikko. There are websites that help you plan your train combinations to get to Nikko. If you're going by train you either end up at JR Nikko or Tobu Nikko Stations. We took the combination that delivered us at the latter, ~2000 Yen / pax.

Take the Tobu Bus towards Chuzenji Onsen or Yumoto Onsen area. You can get off at Stop #31, and walk the few hundred meters up to the hotel - which is what we ended up doing on our arrival day. One of the hotel staff was driving in to work and stopped to drive us (and more importantly our luggage) the rest of the incline to the hotel itself. You could take the lakeside trail from Chuzenji Onsen Town... ~3km easy walk in nice cool climate. But you should really just get off the bus at Chuzenji Onsen Town, call the the hotel and they will come pick you up. Be clear that you are at Chuzenji Onsen Bus Station otherwise they might think you're at Nikko Train Station which they have a 2.45pm shuttle van that picks passengers up from Nikko to the hotel daily.

It's a nice drive up some impressively steep & windy slopes from Nikko to Chuzenji Onsen. The Chuzenji Lake area is a smaller town than Nikko City but it's climate is much cooler. Quieter. The attraction is of nature itself. Plenty of falls to visit, e.g. the impressive Kegan Falls next to the Chuzenji Onsen Bus Station, Yutaki Falls, the smaller Ryuzu Falls. All of which are attractions that Shikisai Hotel will arrange their own shuttle to ferry you to. We took one such tour at no extra charge and covered the 3 falls, went up to Yumoto Onsen and was finally dropped off at the Nikko Shrine & Temple area.

The room is pretty big by Tokyo standards with an ensuite bathroom which has both a shower & bath tub. Since the trees were still partially bare, we had a view of the lake and also enjoyed to cool breeze. We slept on comfy tatami mats which they only lay out for you in the evenings will you're at dinner. There's a small balcony, just remember to keep the screen and sliding glass door shut & locked as apparently the local monkeys are quite adventurous. We didn't encounter any though. They provide the traditional robes which you're expected to wear while in the hotel. You wear it going to the onsen, You wear it to dinner. Green for men, a pastel red/pink for ladies.

Onsen Procedures:
There onsen are separate for men and ladies. There is 1 indoor and 2 outdoor (one covered by a roof and the other under the cool mountain sky), You go buck naked to sit on a stool in front of a mirror, handheld shower, a shallow basin (remember to bring your wash cloth - provided by the hotel), then proceed to soap & shampoo yourself (Tip: the horse-oil-based soap & shampoo is supposed to be very good. Choose the the right mirror/stool to have your wash at. ), and rinse before dipping in the 38C steaming waters of the onsen. I usually started with the indoor one which I found the hottest before moving outdoors. The smell is slightly sulfuric but not overpoweringly so. When you're done, head back to the mirror/stool and just rinse with the shower. No soap or shampoo required this time round.

The room rates include breakfast and dinner. No lunch, not necessary. The food is Japanese. The rice is always great & sticky. The Japanese beef, sashimi (including venison!), tuba (a local Nikko specialty, beancurd-skin based), grilled fish are all great. The chef knows what he's doing. Food is awesome and the presentation is impressive. You will not be hungry. Ask the waitress to recommend cold sake - we had a good one which went well with the dinner. The meals are an essential part of the ryokan & onsen experience.

Well worth the experience.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank paulksyin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2014

Wonderful hotel! Secluded away from downtown hub.free hotel shuttle ~ 20 mins; could not see Lk.Chuzenji from our room, blocked by trees. Hotel staff was attentive. Food excellent ~pricey but worth it

Room Tip: We stayed in tradition Japanese style. I use 2 futons because I'm not used to the floor :-)
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Pam I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 December 2013

This hotel is located about one hour bus ride from Nikko train station if you take the bus towards Yumoto onsen direction. There is a dedicated bus stop for the hotel and you will have to walk about 8 minutes from the bus stop.
Hotel shuttle will pick up at Chuzenji onsen station which is about 45 minutes along the aforementioned route. However, you do have to call ahead for the pick-up.
Service is excellent. Sue, in particular, is exceptional. She speaks fluent English (I believe another staff member also speaks good English) and understand tourists' needs.
Onsen is very clean and quiet. Products are top-notch. I recommend trying out the Japanese version of horse-mane shampoo, condition and body wash.
The ryokan serves breakfast and supper at fixed times. Be sure to inquire / book ahead of time. Food was good but if you are not a big fan of Japanese cuisine, be sure to get your own food at Nikko station.

Room Tip: Ask for a tatami room on the second floor.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank yellowplum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2013

How the staff in this hotel can all be so genuinely friendly is a mystery to me. The rooms are spacious, hot baths very comfortable and the food incredible. The hotel has a calm, unrushed and friendly character. My only gripe is that I didn't see any of the famous Nikko monkeys!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Sirporkpie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 October 2013

We really enjoyed our stay and would come again if we had the chance. Yes, it was quite expensive, but for the memories it was worth it. As others have mentioned, there is a free shuttle bus to the hotel, and also to 3 waterfalls in the local area. My memories will be of the beautiful tatami-matted room, sitting in the bath on the veranda with a drink, taking photos of the nearby monkeys.

Dinner was again beautifully presented, and the wagyuu beef was really excellent. My wife is a first-timer to Japan, and also enjoyed the Japanese dining experience.

We both made use of the onsen / natural spa. There was hardly anyone else using it in the evening. There's an indoor spa, and an outdoor one where you can look at the stars as you relax.

By the way, at least one of the staff speaks fluent English, and the others were willing to try at the very least. We also received a present upon arrival - I'll not spoil the surprise though by saying what it is.

Go here!

Alex and Caroline.

Room Tip: We chose a room with a private bath on a little terrace, which was great for seeing the monkeys as w...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Alex P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 October 2013

This hotel was more of a resort, set on a park across the highway from the lake. The hotel had a free shuttle to the nearby waterfalls (which were quite beautiful), and also down to Nikko and the temple complexes. There was also a regular local bus which would take you back and forth too. It takes about 30 min to get to the temples, and the busses ran about every hour or two, so plan ahead (ask for a map in English from the tourist office in the bus station in Nikko).

The rooms all look out onto the surrounding forest, and you might see deer and monkeys from your window (in fact they warn you not to leave your windows open when you are not in the room lest monkeys come to investigate). The rooms themselves are very nice, large, and comfortable. No wifi (there is free wifi in the lobby). The onset was very nice, and the restaurant was fantastic. They also have a nice shop with sundry supplies and snacks. This is all very good because there is nothing around the hotel, but that's fine if you intend to go there to relax and hang out, as we did. It was indeed very relaxing. I personally think this is a better choice than booking into a place in Nikko itself, as there is really not much in town other than the temples, and the shuttle makes that pretty accessible from the Shikisai.

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
2  Thank sfoartboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Shikisai

Address: 2485 Chugushi, Nikko 321-1661, Tochigi Prefecture
Region: Japan > Kanto > Tochigi Prefecture > Nikko > Chuzenji Onsen , Nikko Onsen
Amenities:
Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 150 Hotels / Ryokan in Nikko
Price Range: £171 - £422 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Shikisai 4.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Reservation Options:
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