Pros

  • Convenient location close to dining options, some attractions, and a subway station
  • Beautiful and modern minimalist interiors and lovely outdoor spaces
  • Spacious rooms have large picture windows with lovely views
  • Luxurious and traditional Japanese tatami suites
  • Amenities include Nespresso machines and minibars with gourmet products
  • Luxurious bathrooms feature soaking tubs, rainfall showers, Toto toilets, and TVs in mirrors
  • Two restaurants serving Japanese and Italian fare, plus Pierre Herme boutique with macarons
  • Lobby lounge and atmospheric bar
  • Luxe spa with seven treatment rooms, steam room, sauna, and a lovely indoor pool
  • Modern fitness center provides Technogym equipment
  • Variety of activities offered, including free art or running tours and hikes
  • Meeting rooms, business center, and free Wi-Fi throughout
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Cons

  • Breakfast isn't included in room rates
  • Cab ride or subway required to visit most temples
See More Cons

Bottom Line

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.

See More Bottom Line

Amenities

  • Cribs
  • Fitness Center
  • Internet
  • Jacuzzi
  • Pool
  • Spa

Oyster Hotel Review

The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto

Scene

Five-pearl luxury chain hotel inspired by ryokans with beautiful minimalist interiors

A luxurious dose of Zen on the banks of the Kamogawa River, this five-pearl property from the Ritz-Carlton brand is inspired by ryokans, the traditional Japanese inn common in the area. This is a decidedly decadent take on what's conventionally a simple affair. The Ritz-Carlton offers modernist, minimalist interiors that are dimly lit, often allowing for the natural surroundings outside, framed by large windows and glass doors, to take center stage. Slatted wooden partitions crop up throughout, as does metal latticework. Bonsai trees are prominently displayed, along with various sculptures, and high-end furnishings include chic seating in pleasant corners dotted about the lobby. Outdoor areas are as thoughtful as the interiors, with strategically placed water features, lovely trees, and other greenery making for a calming environment. There's a stone waterfall, as well as a rock garden.

This is one of the city's top hotels and it attracts well-heeled travelers in town for business or leisure. Service is impeccable and the atmosphere is hushed and polished, but the hotel also does a great job at catering to kids and tourists, with a number of activities available both for free or for a fee. 

See More Scene

Location

Convenient location in central Kyoto, on the banks of the Kamogawa River

The hotel sits on the banks of the Kamogawa River in Kyoto's center. It's a convenient location with plenty of dining options within a five-minute walk. Pontocho, a beautiful alley that's a good place for dining and seeing geishas, is a 12-minute walk away. Gion, the geisha district, can be reached in about 20 minutes. Other nearby attractions include the Kyoto International Manga Museum (15-minute walk) and Nishiki Market (17-minute walk).

Most of the popular temples require a cab or subway/bus ride, such as Kinkaku-ji (20-minute drive or 40 minutes by public transit), Kiyomizu-dera (15-minute drive or 30 minutes by public transit), and Fushimi Inari Taisha (20-minute drive or 29 minutes by public transit). Other popular destinations include the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove (around a half-hour drive or 45 minutes by public transportation).

Kyoto Station is about a 15-minute drive away, or 18 minutes via public transportation. The nearest subway station is a six-minute walk from the hotel. Osaka International Airport is about an hour's drive away, or an hour and 15 minutes by public transportation.

See More Location

Rooms

Luxurious rooms with lovely window views, indulgent bathrooms, and great amenities

A number of different types of rooms and suites are available; all are spacious and tastefully decorated in a subdued yet luxurious manner. The spaces are in no way ostentatious, but luxury is apparent in all details, from the 600-thread-count linens to the high-end furnishings. The calming, clean-lined design is simple and Zen-like, utilizing lots of light wood as well as some Kyoto-inspired details, like calligraphic artwork and lovely locally crafted pottery.

Rooms are large, starting with the entry-level Deluxe Rooms that measure 483 square feet (45 square meters). Suites have living rooms and range in size from the 666-square-foot (62 square meters) Garden Terrace Suites to 1505-square-foot Tsukimi Suites, which have private Zen gardens. The largest option is the 2279-square-foot (212 square meters) Ritz-Carlton Suite. Traditional tatami-style suites are also available, and these are no less luxe than their Western counterparts.

Large windows fill the spaces with natural light and offer lovely views -- some overlook the river, while others have vistas over the garden. Chairs and tables offer seating in front of the views. The rooms are chock-full of modern amenities and thoughtful conveniences, from bedside USB ports to minibars stocked with gourmet products. Other standard amenities include Nespresso coffeemakers, electric kettles, 47-inch flat-screen TVs, Tivoli bluetooth speakers, and free Wi-Fi. 

Beautiful bathrooms pair honey-hued wood with black marble and delicate cherry blossoms etchings. Indulgent soaking tubs and rainfall showers get their own room, as do the Toto toilets, plus there are TVs embedded in the mirrors. Premium toiletries from Asprey are supplied, as are locally handmade soaps and bath salts as well as yukatas (a Japanese-style lightweight kimono robe), bathrobes, and slippers.

See More Rooms

Features

Spa with lovely indoor pool, modern gym, two restaurants serving Japanese and Italian, Pierre Herme boutique, lobby lounge, and bar

Features cater to both business and leisure travelers. One of the highlights is dining, especially the hotel's Mizuki restaurant, which offers kaiseki (traditional multi-course dinner), sushi, tempura, and teppanyaki. It's open for lunch and dinner. La Locanda is the Italian restaurant that serves lunch and dinner. Light snacks, drinks, brunch, and afternoon tea are available in the lobby lounge. The Pierre Herme Paris Boutique sells macarons and other sweet delectables. There's also an atmospheric candle-lit bar. Room service is available 24-hours.

The spa is beautiful and luxurious, with seven treatment rooms, a relaxation room, steam room, and sauna. It also has a lovely indoor pool, which is atmospherically candle lit and has comfortable padded loungers. Spa treatments include bamboo body rituals and body wraps utilizing green tea. The 24-hour fitness center offers a good range of modern Technogym equipment, including cardio machines with built-in screens.

Other features include four meeting rooms, a business center with computers, printers, and a copy machine. Wi-Fi is free throughout. A number of activities are available for booking that explore Kyoto culture, including arts and crafts, chanting sessions with monks, rickshaw tours, sake tasting, sushi class, and a kimono experience. Several experiences are offered for free, including hikes, tandem bike rides, running and cycling tours, origami folding, and an art tour. There are several activities aimed at kids as well, such as cooking classes, treasure hunts, and evening programs that are offered daily, allowing parents to enjoy dinner sans-kids.  

See More Features

Oyster Hotel Review

The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto

Scene

Five-pearl luxury chain hotel inspired by ryokans with beautiful minimalist interiors

A luxurious dose of Zen on the banks of the Kamogawa River, this five-pearl property from the Ritz-Carlton brand is inspired by ryokans, the traditional Japanese inn common in the area. This is a decidedly decadent take on what's conventionally a simple affair. The Ritz-Carlton offers modernist, minimalist interiors that are dimly lit, often allowing for the natural surroundings outside, framed by large windows and glass doors, to take center stage. Slatted wooden partitions crop up throughout, as does metal latticework. Bonsai trees are prominently displayed, along with various sculptures, and high-end furnishings include chic seating in pleasant corners dotted about the lobby. Outdoor areas are as thoughtful as the interiors, with strategically placed water features, lovely trees, and other greenery making for a calming environment. There's a stone waterfall, as well as a rock garden.

This is one of the city's top hotels and it attracts well-heeled travelers in town for business or leisure. Service is impeccable and the atmosphere is hushed and polished, but the hotel also does a great job at catering to kids and tourists, with a number of activities available both for free or for a fee. 

See More Scene

Location

Convenient location in central Kyoto, on the banks of the Kamogawa River

The hotel sits on the banks of the Kamogawa River in Kyoto's center. It's a convenient location with plenty of dining options within a five-minute walk. Pontocho, a beautiful alley that's a good place for dining and seeing geishas, is a 12-minute walk away. Gion, the geisha district, can be reached in about 20 minutes. Other nearby attractions include the Kyoto International Manga Museum (15-minute walk) and Nishiki Market (17-minute walk).

Most of the popular temples require a cab or subway/bus ride, such as Kinkaku-ji (20-minute drive or 40 minutes by public transit), Kiyomizu-dera (15-minute drive or 30 minutes by public transit), and Fushimi Inari Taisha (20-minute drive or 29 minutes by public transit). Other popular destinations include the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove (around a half-hour drive or 45 minutes by public transportation).

Kyoto Station is about a 15-minute drive away, or 18 minutes via public transportation. The nearest subway station is a six-minute walk from the hotel. Osaka International Airport is about an hour's drive away, or an hour and 15 minutes by public transportation.

See More Location

Rooms

Luxurious rooms with lovely window views, indulgent bathrooms, and great amenities

A number of different types of rooms and suites are available; all are spacious and tastefully decorated in a subdued yet luxurious manner. The spaces are in no way ostentatious, but luxury is apparent in all details, from the 600-thread-count linens to the high-end furnishings. The calming, clean-lined design is simple and Zen-like, utilizing lots of light wood as well as some Kyoto-inspired details, like calligraphic artwork and lovely locally crafted pottery.

Rooms are large, starting with the entry-level Deluxe Rooms that measure 483 square feet (45 square meters). Suites have living rooms and range in size from the 666-square-foot (62 square meters) Garden Terrace Suites to 1505-square-foot Tsukimi Suites, which have private Zen gardens. The largest option is the 2279-square-foot (212 square meters) Ritz-Carlton Suite. Traditional tatami-style suites are also available, and these are no less luxe than their Western counterparts.

Large windows fill the spaces with natural light and offer lovely views -- some overlook the river, while others have vistas over the garden. Chairs and tables offer seating in front of the views. The rooms are chock-full of modern amenities and thoughtful conveniences, from bedside USB ports to minibars stocked with gourmet products. Other standard amenities include Nespresso coffeemakers, electric kettles, 47-inch flat-screen TVs, Tivoli bluetooth speakers, and free Wi-Fi. 

Beautiful bathrooms pair honey-hued wood with black marble and delicate cherry blossoms etchings. Indulgent soaking tubs and rainfall showers get their own room, as do the Toto toilets, plus there are TVs embedded in the mirrors. Premium toiletries from Asprey are supplied, as are locally handmade soaps and bath salts as well as yukatas (a Japanese-style lightweight kimono robe), bathrobes, and slippers.

See More Rooms

Features

Spa with lovely indoor pool, modern gym, two restaurants serving Japanese and Italian, Pierre Herme boutique, lobby lounge, and bar

Features cater to both business and leisure travelers. One of the highlights is dining, especially the hotel's Mizuki restaurant, which offers kaiseki (traditional multi-course dinner), sushi, tempura, and teppanyaki. It's open for lunch and dinner. La Locanda is the Italian restaurant that serves lunch and dinner. Light snacks, drinks, brunch, and afternoon tea are available in the lobby lounge. The Pierre Herme Paris Boutique sells macarons and other sweet delectables. There's also an atmospheric candle-lit bar. Room service is available 24-hours.

The spa is beautiful and luxurious, with seven treatment rooms, a relaxation room, steam room, and sauna. It also has a lovely indoor pool, which is atmospherically candle lit and has comfortable padded loungers. Spa treatments include bamboo body rituals and body wraps utilizing green tea. The 24-hour fitness center offers a good range of modern Technogym equipment, including cardio machines with built-in screens.

Other features include four meeting rooms, a business center with computers, printers, and a copy machine. Wi-Fi is free throughout. A number of activities are available for booking that explore Kyoto culture, including arts and crafts, chanting sessions with monks, rickshaw tours, sake tasting, sushi class, and a kimono experience. Several experiences are offered for free, including hikes, tandem bike rides, running and cycling tours, origami folding, and an art tour. There are several activities aimed at kids as well, such as cooking classes, treasure hunts, and evening programs that are offered daily, allowing parents to enjoy dinner sans-kids.  

See More Features

Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Babysitting Services

  • Balcony / Terrace / Patio

  • Business Center

  • Cable

  • Concierge

  • Cribs

  • Dry Cleaning

  • Fitness Center

  • Full Kitchen

  • Internet

  • Jacuzzi

  • Kids Allowed

  • Laundry

  • Meeting / Conference Rooms

  • Mini Bar (with liquor)

  • Pool

  • Rental Car Service Desk Onsite

  • Room Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Smoking Rooms Available

  • Spa

  • Supervised Kids Activities

  • Swim-Up Bar

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.