This is a review of our stay at Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei.
In the hot and humid season of early July, my husband and I took our two small children to visit UFJ in Osaka, and the next day we headed to Kinosaki Onsen. This time, we decided to stay at this hotel, which is comfortable for families with children. To get straight to the point, the hotel, surrounded by a beautiful forest garden of 50,000 tsubo, is a bit far from the center of Kinosaki Onsen, but we loved the environment where we could enjoy the hot springs to the fullest even within the hotel grounds. The private family onsen baths in particular were amazingly wonderful. This Japanese-style hotel is completely different from its sister ryokan, Nishimuraya Honkan.
We bought boxed lunches and some beers at Osaka Station around 11:30 a.m., boarded an express train, and arrived at Kinosaki Onsen Station around 2:30 p.m. As we exited the station, we saw a wooden crab artwork, a specialty of Kinosaki Onsen, at the rotary in front of the station. After a while, a free shuttle bus arrived near the crab artwork. The hotel bus was green and white, with the name Nishimuraya Hotel Shougetsu-tei written on it. This hotel is located at the far end of Kinosaki Onsen, so it would take about 25 minutes to walk from the station. It is recommended to use the shuttle service. We boarded the shuttle bus, passed through the hot spring resort area crowded with tourists, and after a while we saw the hotel where we would be staying.
When we got off the shuttle bus in front of the entrance and entered the building, we saw a traditional tea room. Then, an automatic door with a lattice door on the right opened to reveal a spacious lobby with a high ceiling. The reception desk was on the right, a souvenir shop was at the back of the lobby, and to the left was a large window with a view of a beautiful waterfall and trees. The lobby lounge was furnished with luxurious and sophisticated interior and furniture. In one corner of the lobby lounge, there was a cafe area with a grand piano and an array of free soft drinks and other beverages.
When we entered the lobby, the staff directed us to sofas by the window with a view of the waterfall. After checking in here, the staff brought us welcome drinks. We felt as if we were relaxing in a beautiful forest in a summer resort area, listening to the sound of the waterfall. We could choose from lemonade, orange juice, apple juice, mango juice, or coffee as our welcome drink.
After a while, the staff showed us to our room. This time we stayed in a room in the Moon Wing. Upon entering the room, we found an alcove with a magnificent hanging scroll, a spacious Japanese-style room, and a large porch on the window side. On the porch were two couches and a table in a sophisticated Japanese design. The sliding shoji doors on the porch opened to reveal a view of the mountain trees. And when we looked up at the ceiling, we saw that the entire surface was covered with Japanese paper called washi. The room wrapped in washi was filled with very soft light. Also, the clay wall with a unique design of a hollowed out circle was decorated with a carved rabbit. The room was located in the moon wing, so the design was based on the moon. Designed by a famous architect, the room was luxuriously decorated with traditional Japanese materials, such as clay walls, a naguri wood process floor, and a ceiling covered with Japanese paper.
The staff then prepared green tea and sweets with red bean paste. After relaxing in our room with the green tea for a while, we changed into our yukatas and headed to the large communal onsen baths on the ground floor of the hotel. The large bathhouse had indoor onsen baths, outdoor onsen baths, Jacuzzis, and mist saunas. The outdoor onsen baths made us feel as if we were enjoying a hot spring in the forest while listening to the chirping of birds. Most ryokans and hotels in Kinosaki Onsen, where there is a culture of yumeguri, are built with smaller indoor onsen baths. This is because many ryokans and stores are crammed into a small area in the center of Kinosaki Onsen. On the other hand, this hotel, located a little further from the center of the hot spring resort area, had a very spacious and open large onsen baths. Also, orange juice, barley tea, and plum juice were available free of charge at the entrance to the large bathhouse.
After this, we went back to our room and the staff came to our room and started preparing dinner. Since we were with small children, the in-room dining was very convenient. This time, we enjoyed a kaiseki course. Kinosaki Onsen is famous for its crabs, so from November to March, many tourists come to Kinosaki Onsen for the tasty Matsuba Crabs, but since we visited in the summer, they served teppanyaki black beef and abalone. The meals were unquestionably delicious, and the chef’s thoughtfulness in making guests feel the season was evident.
After dinner, we decided to take a walk around Kinosaki Onsen district, but it seemed somewhat of a hassle since we had to take a shuttle bus to the center of the city. On top of that, it started to drizzle outside, so we decided to spend some time in the room drinking sake that we had just bought at the souvenir store on the first floor. By the way, a free shuttle service runs from the hotel to the center of Kinosaki Onsen every 30 minutes between 15:00-18:00 and 20:00-22:00. The shuttle bus is available for those who wish to enjoy an onsen hopping at Kinosaki Onsen.
The next morning, we woke up around 7:00 a.m., so we headed to the large bathhouse again, enjoyed the morning onsens, and after this, headed to a large dining room on the second floor. Breakfast was served from 7:00 to 9:30 a.m., and consisted of a buffet of Japanese and Western dishes. The dishes included hot tofu, grilled horse mackerel, ground sausage, bacon, grilled salmon, grilled dried flatfish, miso soup with sweet shrimp, steamed vegetables, rolled egg, potato salad, Tamba beef croquette, simmered lotus root and kelp, brown rice udon, steamed dumplings, pasta, curry, fresh croissants and bread, tofu mousse cakes, tofu madeleines, French toast, konjac rice cakes, brown sugar rice cakes, orange, apple, pineapple, lychee, and more. There was also a buffet section for children. Children’s favorite sweet curry, pancakes, French fries, hamburgers, etc. were available. Overall, the food seemed to be a very ordinary breakfast buffet, with no sophisticated dishes. In addition, the dining area of the banquet hall was not a private dining room, although there was ample space between tables, so the setting was not very special.
After breakfast, we headed for the private family outdoor onsen bath reserved at check-in. There are three private family outdoor onsen baths, each lasting 70 minutes and costing JPY8,800 for up to four people, with an additional fee of JPY1,100 per person for five or more people. We reserved the private family onsen bath called FO-RO. It was very luxurious with a living room, powder room, and rock bath room. Mineral water and sparkling wine were provided. From the private family outdoor onsen bath, we could feel a pleasant breeze and look out over beautiful mountains and forests. The sparkling wine in the clear morning air was an unforgettable experience. The hotel has several rooms with private outdoor baths, but they are not hot springs. Boiled water is used. This is because Kinosaki Onsen is a hot spring resort where visitors can enjoy an onsen hopping, and bylaws prohibit hot spring water from being supplied to guest rooms.
Overall, the hotel is a bit far from the center of Kinosaki Onsen, which may seem a bit inconvenient for those who want to enjoy an onsen hopping in yukata at any time, but a free shuttle service is available. Also, even if you do not go on an onsen hopping, you can enjoy the onsens to the fullest on the hotel grounds. On top of that, the hospitality and service of the staff was top-notch. Next time, we would like to visit during the cherry blossom season or in the fall when the leaves are changing colors.
Check Availability and Pricing for the hotel on Agoda
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Is the location easy to access?
Please take a direct express train or highway bus from Osaka Station or Kyoto Station to Kinosaki Onsen Station. The travel time is 2.5 hours for express train and 3.5 hours for highway bus.
From Kinosaki Onsen Station, the hotel’s free shuttle service runs every 30 minutes between 15:00-18:00 and 20:00-22:00.
Alternatively, from Kinosaki Onsen Station, a free shuttle service operated by the Kinosaki Onsen Tourism Center provides transportation to and from each ryokan and hotel. The shuttle service departs between 12:30 and 18:00 according to the express trains arriving at Kinosaki Onsen Station. Those who wish to use this service need to inform the hotel in advance of the arrival time at Kinosaki Onsen Station. When boarding a shuttle bus, please tell a driver the name of the hotel where you will be staying and your name.
If you wish to leave your luggage at the Kinosaki Onsen Tourist Center in front of the station, tell staff the name of the ryokan you are staying at and your name, and leave your luggage there for JPY200 per piece. The ryokan staff will carry your luggage for you.
How about toiletries & in-room amenities?
All of the amenities are taken care of including enough toiletries, yukatas, tea bags, and a Japanese tea set, etc. Also complimentary coffee, tea, fruit juice, and sweets, etc., were available at the lobby lounge from 7:30 to 23:00. Room service is not available. There are convenience stores within 20min walking distance. You might want to buy your necessities before coming here.
This hotel is child-friendly. The staff will provide you with baby bedding, baby chairs, baby soap, baby lotion, and anything else you may need.
Then, the free WiFi signal in the hotel was good. There were two computers in the lobby for guests to use.
How about In-house Facilities?
There are wonderful large communal onsen baths, mist saunas, and Jacuzzi. The communal onsen baths are open from 5:30-10:00, 12:00-24:30. Also, there are three private family onsen baths. You need to book in advance. It costs JPY8,800 for 70min. Complimentary sparkling wine, bottled water, and bath towels, etc., are available.
Tattooed persons may not be able to use the communal onsen areas.
Then the garden pool is available for free from 9:00-17:00 between mid-July and late Aug only.
Also, bicycles are available for free for 2 hours on a first-come, first-served basis.
Then this is a perfect universal design. There are some universal rooms. Wheelchairs are available for borrowing. If you bring people with weak legs, you might want to inform the staff in advance as they can arrange a room near the lift.
Then this is dog-friendly. If you bring your dogs, you need to inform the staff in advance as there are some regulations.
Check Availability and Pricing for the hotel on Agoda
Info about Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei
|Modern Onsen Hotel
|Check-in and out times
|60,000 JPY for 2 adults per room
|Fill the form in
|Free wifi in the hotel
|Wheelchairs are available
Pets are allowed
The free parking lot is available
|Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei’s MAP
|Free shuttle bus from Kinosaki Onsen Station
|Address and TEL
|1016-2 Yushima Kinosaki Toyooka City
Hyogo 669-6101 Tel +81 796-32-3535
|Nishimuraya Hotel Shogetsutei’s HP
*All information above is as of the date that I posted on my blog.
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