Take a look at the best kid-friendly hotels in Kyoto.
Inspired by ryokans, the traditional Japanese inn common in the area, the five-pearl Ritz-Carlton Kyoto is a decidedly decadent take on what's conventionally a simple affair. Standouts include the luxurious spa with a beautiful indoor pool, a Technogym equipped fitness center, and a restaurant serving a variety of Japanese fare, from kaiseki to sushi. Another guest favorite are the activities offered here, some of which are free, like art tours and origami classes. The 134 spacious rooms (some are tatami-style) are chock-full of amenities like Nespresso machines and minibars stocked with gourmet products, plus luxurious bathrooms have TVs in mirrors, soaking tubs, and rainfall showers. Though not quite as luxurious, the Hyatt Regency Kyoto offers a more wallet-friendly alternative with comparable features, but no pool.
Part of an international chain of serviced apartments, Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto has 124 chic, contemporary studios and apartments with kitchenettes and seating areas. Each unit is equipped with flat-screen TVs, dock stations for music players, DVD players, and free Wi-Fi. Located on a busy Kyoto street, the upper-middle-range property is a three-minute walk to the Gojo subway station. Breakfast, self-service laundry, and on-site parking (all with extra fees) are about all the hotel offers in the way of features. Travelers looking for a more traditional hotel property may prefer the Royal Park Hotel The Kyoto, and those looking for a traditional ryokan experience could try the Kyoto Garden Ryokan Yachiyo.
Located in historic Higashiyama Shichijo and a seven-minute drive to Kyoto Station, the Hyatt Regency Kyoto is a 189-room luxury hotel with minimalistic decor inspired by traditional Japanese design. Rooms are spacious and simple with light-wood detailing and generous granite bathrooms with a large wet-room shower and a separate bathtub. There's a range of upscale amenities, including fitness classes, a spa, and a plethora of on-site restaurants offering different decor and cuisines. Guests rave about the impeccable service. Travelers looking for a similarly luxurious hotel closer to Kyoto Station should try the Hotel Granvia Kyoto.
The 172-room upper-middle-range Royal Park Hotel is located in the heart of Kyoto within walking distance of popular attractions, restaurants, and public transportation. There's eye-catching art and design throughout the hotel, and a simple elegance to its common areas. Rooms are typically small, but modern and fresh, with mini-fridges and flat-screen TVs. The on-site restaurant offers Japanese and western fare, and the bar is a hip place for a drink. There's a floor for women only, an on-site laundry room, and a room for smokers. As an alternative, the Almont Hotel Kyoto has similar amenities with the addition of a communal bath and a library.
One of the tallest buildings in Kyoto, the 322-room Kyoto Hotel Okura offers skyline views of the city and a luxury experience that includes spacious rooms and six on-site restaurants, a baby room, as well as free Wi-Fi. The hotel's central location makes it within walking distance of Kyoto City Hall, Honnoji Temple, and Shimadzu Foundation Memorial Hall. Accommodations cater to Western expectations with designer toiletries, minibars, and coffeemakers. By comparison, the similarly priced Hotel Granvia Kyoto is larger, more modern, and includes an indoor pool and an underground shopping mall.
The mid-range, 204-room Sakura Terrace Hotel is located on a quiet street that's an easy walk to Kyoto Station. The hotel has an open courtyard, creating a spacious, resort-like feeling that's unusual in busy Kyoto. Modern rooms have simple, light decor, and some have nice furnished balconies with views of the city. An on-site restaurant has indoor seating plus outdoor fire pits, and each guest receives a free daily cocktail at the bar. The communal bath is a plus, as is free laundry service and free all-day coffee and tea. Travelers can compare rates at the Almont Hotel Kyoto, a similar hotel with a library lounge and computers.
Opened in 2014, Mitsui Garden Hotel Kyoto Shinmachi Bettei is a modern, upper-middle-range property in north central Kyoto. Its sleek restaurant, with views of a Japanese garden, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and the traditional communal bath is free for guests. The 129 modern rooms feature a blend of Japanese and Western touches -- but the frosted shoji-inspired windows limit views and, since they're curtainless, the amount of natural light that's let in -- guests complain that it's either too much or too little. But rates here are lower, and its rooms are more up to date, than those at the nearby Mitsui Garden Hotel Kyoto Sanjo.
Kyoto Tokyu Hotel is an upscale property near the Nishi Honganji temple, a short shuttle ride from Kyoto Station. The 430 rooms are clean, with straightforward modern decor, and some of the bathrooms are on the small side. The hotel has three restaurants serving a variety of cuisines as well as a tea lounge and bar. There’s a small fitness center, beauty salon, spa and souvenir shop are also on-site, but no pool. Guests might want to also check rates at Royal Park Hotel the Kyoto, an upper-mid range property with spacious, modern rooms close to the Gion Geisha District.
Kyoto Garden Ryokan Yachiyo is a traditional Japanese-style inn, or “ryokan," located in a quiet neighborhood outside Kyoto city center. This three-and-a-half pearl property, with 18 rooms, has a lovely rustic atmosphere, and the traditional guest rooms, lined with woven straw tatami floor mats, overlook a beautiful Japanese rock garden. In keeping with the usual ryokan setup, this property has an on-site restaurant and a traditional public bath (“onsen"). Guest rooms vary in size, and not all rooms have their own private bathrooms, and some rooms are a bit worn and could use an update. Travelers may want to also check out ryokan IZUYASU, another traditional Japanese-style inn, which was stylishly refurbished in 2013, and is in the city center.
The Mitsui Garden Hotel Kyoto Sanjo is a mid-range chain hotel in Kyoto's Nakagyo-ku/Sanjo area, just a 10-minute train ride to Kyoto Station. All 169 simple, but modern, rooms include flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and free Wi-Fi. The dining room offers a breakfast buffet with hot and cold options alongside gorgeous garden views, and while there’s no pool or fitness center, the hotel has a free traditional communal bath that stays open late. Guests should compare rates with Mitsui Garden Hotel Kyoto Shinmachi Bettei, a sister property that has similar features and lower rates.
Less than a 10-minute walk from Kyoto International Conference Center, the Grand Prince Hotel Kyoto is popular with business travelers, but at least 20 minutes from downtown Kyoto by car. The upper-middle-range hotel has restaurants offering beautiful garden and pond views, as well as a variety of cuisines. There’s also a traditional tea house on-site. Though the 309 spacious rooms decor ranging from sober to whimsical, some furniture is worn and bathrooms need an update. Guests wanting to be closer to the sights should consider the Royal Park Hotel Kyoto, an upper-middle-range property with spacious, modern rooms that's close to the Gion Geisha District.
This large, 499-room Westin has served as a hotel since 1900 and has an illustrious history, housing Allied officers during World War II, and now hosting state officials from all over the world. It’s set in the Kyoto’s charming Higashiyama district, at the foot of the Kyoto’s eastern mountains and is surrounded by beautiful Japanese-style gardens. The location is a bit removed from the city center, which is about 20 minutes by public transportation, though it's within walking distance of temples and museums. The hotel also runs a free shuttle to the Gion district and Kyoto station. There are several on-site restaurants, including one where guests cook food in traditional Japanese hot pots, as well as indoor and outdoor pools and a spa. Some parts of the building are a little dated, but it’s a nice option for travelers who appreciate history and the natural surroundings.
Located in downtown Kyoto near the intersection of two major subway lines, the 244-room, mid-range Karasuma Kyoto Hotel is well situated for both tourists and business travelers. Several amenities also make it family-friendly, including an on-site bakery with western-style bread, a small convenience store, and free Wi-Fi. Guest rooms, while equipped with soothing minimalist furnishings and flat-screen TVs, are uneven. Some have been renovated while others smell of smoke (even ones deemed "non-smoking"). By comparison, the New Miyako Hotel is close to the Kyoto train station, extensively renovated, and around the same price.
This modern hostel is set in a green, natural area in Northwest Kyoto, a bit far from downtown but close to temples and natural features, including the Arashiyama bamboo forest. Accommodations range from Six-Bed Rooms with dormitory-style layouts and shared bathrooms to Twin Ensuite Rooms with private baths to Japanese-Style Rooms with mats. Extra beds can be added to rooms, which can make the hostel a handy choice for groups and families, although prices are slightly higher here than at other hostels. Shared rooms come with personal lockers and bunk beds with curtains, although Triple Rooms have single beds. Facilities include a clean communal kitchen and a beautiful bath house. Meals, including breakfast, are extra, as are the daily organized cultural events. Travelers who want to be closer to downtown Kyoto could check out the modern Piece Hostel near Kyoto station, which has lower rates.
It’s all about location at the Kyoto Tower Hotel, an upper-middle-range property located in the heart of the city across from Kyoto Station. The hotel shares a building with a tourist information center, a public bath, and a soaring tower with an observation deck offering panoramic views. There’s no fitness center or pool, but the hotel has a restaurant as well as a bar with impressive views. The property’s 162 rooms are contemporary, but tiny, with little room for anything beyond sleeping. Guests willing to trek a bit farther from Kyoto Station might want to compare rates with Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kyoto-Hachijoguchi, a mid-range property with modern rooms and a tasty breakfast buffet.