This was a really great place -- if you are walking be absolutely sure you know where you are going ... it took us a long time to to find it. We arrived a bit too early to check in so we left the bags at the hotel and went to Fushimi Inari-taisha
Anyway, when we got back to the Ryokan we were shown to our room which was huge ... having just arrived from Tokyo and had a smallish room, we were very satisfied with the room that we were given. There was always green tea available with some small eats. During the day, the beds (which were essentially mattresses) were put away to make it into a spacious living room. This was done usually while you were at breakfast. At breakfast there is a choice of continental style (included in the price of the stay) or you could go for the full Japanese breakfast (which was extra but I can't remember the price). We went for the breakfast on both days and it was definitely worth the experience, but to be honest it probably filled us up a bit too much as it was very sizeable. The room was the en-suite variety so we didn't have to share a shower with other guests. Having said that, there is a public bath on the basement level which everyone can use and is perfectly adequate. In the cold winter months it must be wonderful to have such a facility at your fingertips. I would say that the water was not from the hot spring, and if it was, it was chlorinated so any hot spring smell had gone --- note for those who are not familiar with Japanese public bath etiquette -- it is done in the nude.
As we many places in Japan, you tend to find the quality of English is quite varied --- in some cases they spoke pretty much perfectly, in others, you were really struggling. So be prepared to negotiate this hurdle when it arises. Dealing with it in good humour is the best way.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- WATAZEN is a Classical Japanese Inn with modern amenities, located in the center of Kyoto. It has been a familiar inn for many travelers to Kyoto since [Tenpo Gannen](1830). Today, many people enjoy our traditional harmonious atmosphere in central Kyoto. We are confident that our excellent service and cuisine will make your visit to Kyoto a memorable one. Please enjoy Kyoto and relax at WATAZEN. The cost is from 6300JPY - per person. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Watazen Hotel Kyoto