Kyoto, Japan is a southern city on the island of Honshu. The city’s popularity is partly due to it having once been the capital of Japan, between 794 to 1868, as it was the emperor’s place of residence. That royal legacy is represented today with the architectural artifacts from the time. The city is even commutable from the current capital of Japan, Tokyo, since it is only a two-hour (bullet train) ride away. Kyoto has an abundance of attractions and historical sites that make for stunning vacation pictures. It has significant historic value due to the countless Buddhist temples and shrines in the city that still stand. The city is culturally rich and provides interactive experiences for its visitors which makes it a great travel destination.
During a stay in Kyoto, travelers can enjoy a taste of kaiseki dining courses and see a geisha performance. The ancient palaces and decadent gardens of Kyoto are UNESCO World Heritage Sites that travelers should not miss out on seeing. For travelers who want to stay in the area during their Japan adventure, there are many places to stay while in Kyoto. Here are our picks for both luxury and budget stays in the city of Kyoto.
Best Luxury Hotels
These top notch hotels offer visitors of Kyoto a luxurious and serene experience. Each of these hotels offer the best in terms of cuisine, wellness experiences and cultural immersion. These deluxe hotels are the best options for travelers who want to be pampered and surrounded by the most modern amenities. From the high quality of their guest rooms to their central locations, check out the most exclusive places to stay in Kyoto.
Park Hyatt Kyoto
The Park Hyatt is a luxury guesthouse in Kyoto with 70 guest rooms. It is located in the heart of the bustling city and has unmatched views. Although it is centrally located, guests will notice that the Park Hyatt Kyoto is a peaceful retreat. The hillside retreat has outstanding culinary and wellness facilities. The hotel has partnered with Kyoyamato, a family restaurant that has persisted for six generations, to provide authentic Japanese cuisine for its guests. The hotel also offers its guests wellness experiences through its private spa that honors the spiritual legacy of Kyoto and invites its visitors to savor the culture of Japan. It is known as a popular accommodation for global travelers who want to experience the best of Kyoto. This hotel has an average nightly price of $1,234 (for standard rooms, excluding tax).
This iconic luxury hotel has a location in Kyoto, as of 2014. In addition to the Ritz-Carlton’s well-known quality service and exceptionally high standards, this luxury hotel takes on a special Japanese flair. The Kyoto Ritz-Carlton is a modern getaway that serves as a sumptuous sanctuary to its guests. The Ritz-Carlton is the first of its kind in Kyoto (that is, a full-service urban luxury resort) and is situated on the banks of the Kamogawa River. The serene views of the Higashiyama mountains add to the appeal of the waterside, central hotel. It is within walking distance of the most popular sites in Kyoto and has a tranquil on-site spa. With 134 guest rooms and lavish room options including deluxe, deluxe garden view and luxury (with floor-to-ceiling windows and views of the river and mountains), this accommodation will help make a visit to Kyoto that much more enjoyable.
Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto
The Four Seasons Hotel in Kyoto is a contemporary and privately located accommodation. With Japanese artistry at seemingly every turn and traditional tea ceremonies, this hotel takes pride in providing and arranging unique experiences that its guests can cherish. With diverse offerings that can accommodate up to six adults (depending on the booking) per room, this hotel has plenty of options for groups or solo travelers wanting a spacious room. It also has one of Kyoto’s largest hotel wellness facilities. The spa offers treatments (and exclusive packages) that incorporate Japanese beauty techniques and traditions that help its guests unwind like never before. The room rate for a night in a deluxe room is slightly over $1,500 while residential suites go for around $4,000 per night.
Best Affordable Hotels
Of course, some travelers prefer to save on accommodations and splurge on experiences. A trip to Kyoto may be better spent, to some visitors, out and about. That does not mean that travelers should lower their expectations for their stay significantly. There are many places that travelers can stay in during their trip to Kyoto, Japan that will not break the bank. So, here is a roundup of the nicest local hotels that have perks and lower prices.
Ace Hotel Kyoto
This hotel has a super modern feel, with a more affordable price point. The hip hotel in Kyoto has original artwork from artists from Japan and the United States throughout its halls, which add to its laid-back and creative ambiance. This hotel is truly a creative’s paradise, as it has artists in residence that present their work periodically, which guests (and art connoisseurs) can schedule their trip around. It hosts DJs and entertainment programming for its guests to enjoy and has a 24-hour gym. There are three restaurants in Ace Hotel, so its guests have plenty of culinary options. The accommodation even has a booking option that includes daily breakfast during a guest’s stay, for a fee. A stay at Ace Hotel in a standard room costs around $270 per night.
Piece Hostel Kyoto
This hostel is a great budget option for travelers who want to interact intimately with the city of Kyoto. Avid travelers that can appreciate a comfortable yet quaint space will enjoy staying in this Higashiyama district hostel. This modern accommodation has sleek features and even has black-out curtains for privacy and convenience. It has a kitchenette, rooftop terrace, free breakfast and an array of room options. Guests can choose between dormitory style, private and family rooms. Piece Hostel has impressive communal spaces and encourages its guests to socialize in stylish lounges, regardless of the space they book. Prices range from around $17 per person in dormitory-style rooms to $130 per private room.
Carta Hotel Kyoto Bettei
This affordable hotel offers its guests leisure and garden areas to pass the time in, after exploring Kyoto. The Carta Hotel is around 10 minutes from central Kyoto, so this accommodation is best for travelers who want to adventure to get to know the area. With 24-hour security and reception, this hotel is the perfect place to rest in a new travel destination. While this hotel has fewer frills, which reflects in its affordable price, there are entertainment options on-site and staff are glad to recommend nearby attractions, restaurants and sites. The standard rooms at this accommodation cost around $50 per night.