What kind of boutique ryokan is Luxury hotel SOWAKA?
The ryokan-style hotel opened in 2019. Once we stepped through the green noren curtain and entered the inn, we felt as if we were in another world, a very quaint and wonderful inn. The entrance is so small that it blends in with its surroundings, and if you’re not paying attention, you might walk right through it without even noticing. The landmark is the green noren curtain at the entrance. The ryokan does not give the impression of being new, as it blends easily into the streets of Gion Yasaka. This is housed in a 100-year-old sukiya-style mansion built which was used as a famous ryotei restaurant until about three years ago.
The glamour of a modern luxury hotel is not here, but it is a unique experience to be exposed to a different dimension of luxury. The traditional architecture of this inn is combined with the latest facilities to make your stay extremely comfortable.
If you want to experience a five-star ryokan in Kyoto, this is the place to stay. It will definitely give you the best memories. The location called the Higashiyama area is perfect. Just strolling around here, you will feel like a samurai. It’s a very attractive area that is truly a concentration of Kyoto culture.
On the other hand, if you want to enjoy a hotel with amenities such as a gym, pool, spa treatments, and hot springs during your stay in Kyoto, this is not the place for you.
Is the location easy to access?
The ryokan is a 15-minute walk from Gion Shijo Station. If you have a lot of luggage or are visiting Kyoto for the first time, you may want to take a cab from Kyoto Station. It takes 15min and costs around JPY2,000.
Most of the cab drivers do not know about this property. If you can, please tell them the location on the map. Alternatively, show the address and TEL No. in the below Japanese as they can enter the phone number into the car navigation system to confirm the destination.
Luxury Hotel そわか
電話番号 075 541 5323
If you drive a car, you can park at Times Yasaka Shrine South. Only the first night will be free.
*I wouldn’t recommend renting a car in Kyoto because all parking lots in the city are small and expensive, just like in Tokyo. Kyoto city can be toured smoothly by train, bus, or cab.
Where is the best accommodation for anniversaries in Kyoto?
If you are looking for a good place for a special occasion in Kyoto, the property is one of the best. The staff arranges flowers and cakes to celebrate an anniversary at additional charges if you request in advance.
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Rooms I would recommend?
The property has a new building and a main building. If you are going to stay here, I would rather recommend a room in the main building. The ambiance would be more charming, elegant, and quaint.
Our garden view room is located in a maze of corridors, and when the staff opened the door to our room, we were greeted by a beautiful garden, just as the name suggests. I can’t help but marvel at the spectacular view and was reminded of the charm of Japanese architecture and gardens.
*Children under 12 years old are not allowed to stay in the main building, but they are allowed in the new building.
How about toiletries & in-room amenities?
All of the amenities are taken care of including enough toiletries, samue, bathrobes, a coffee machine with capsules, a complimentary mini-bar, and a Japanese tea set. In the mini-bar was white, red wine, Japanese sake, beer, welcome champagne, fruit juice, tea, water, and fresh cream chocolate. The camellia oil-based bath amenities are also very Kyoto-like. Also, there is no TV in the room. Instead, there is a tablet and wooden speaker. Overall, the lighting in the building is dark. Room service is not available. There is a convenience store nearby. The free WiFi reception was excellent.
How about In-house Facilities?
There is an amazing traditional courtyard. Don’t forget to take a walk during your stay.
There are no large communal baths, but each room has its own cypress bath with the scent of cypress.
Then this is dog-friendly. If you want to bring your dogs, you may want to inform staff in advance. There is only one room called No.111 you can stay with your dogs.
Then this is an almost universal design in the new building. The wheelchair is not available for borrowing. If you bring someone with weak legs, you may want to inform the staff in advance as they arrange a room near the lift.
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How about meals?
The ryokan has a restaurant called La Bombance, which is famous for its nouvelle cuisine japonaise. There are also La Bombance restaurants in Tokyo and Hong Kong, which are popular among gourmets.
For breakfast, you can choose between Japanese and Western food. We chose Japanese food for breakfast, and it was an elegant Kyoto-style meal that incorporated the four seasons of Kyoto using Kyoto vegetables and seasonal ingredients.
There are many restaurants, bars, and cafes if you walk around a bit. With the exception of fast-food restaurants, most of them open at 10:00 or 11:00 a.m., so it would be recommended to have breakfast at the ryokan.
In the past few years, a number of attractive hotels have opened in Kyoto, and this hotel was one that I was very interested in. I think it’s really a wonderful place for anyone who wants to spend some meaningful time in Kyoto.
Lastly, if you are staying here, the season is also an important factor. If possible, I would recommend staying in the spring or fall when the traditional garden is most beautiful. The scenery changes with each season, so some people may stay in each season.
Info about Luxury hotel SOWAKA
|Check-in and out times
|Estimated Price||80,000 JPY for 2 adults per room|
|Internet Connection||Free wifi in the ryokan|
|Facility information||Wheelchairs are available in the new building
Dogs are allowed in a room called No.111
The parking lot is available
|Location||Luxury hotel SOWAKA’s MAP|
|Access||15min by taxi from Kyoto Station
|Address and TEL||Tel +81 75-541-5323|
|Official Homepage||Luxury hotel SOWAKA’s HP|
*All information above is as of the date that I posted on my blog.
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