25 Apr 2016 in In immersion
Discover an exceptional hotel designed like a traditional Ryokan which can only be accessed by private boat: a private immersion visit…
Once you are over the Togetsukyo Bridge at Kyoto, the mystery still remains unsolved. You can see no shadow of a hotel and the landscape reveals no clues except for the banks of the Ôigawa River that you have to reach when you realise that the journey does not end there.
Once you are free of your luggage, you are invited to head for the pontoon, where a very beautiful wooden boat is moored waiting for you to get into. The engine starts up; the boat slips away from its anchorage with you on board and heads for HOSHINOYA Kyoto. The pace is slow and the ride is pleasant, the perfect pace for you to observe nature and try to make out your destination, but you still have to wait.
Ten minutes later, the bank is getting closer and you finally catch sight of the first outlines of Arashiyama. You have hardly set your feet on dry land when you look up and your gaze is lost in these natural wooded surroundings to try and see where the hamlet, whose first buildings can be glimpsed a few metres from the water, extends to. You are plagued by impatience and the desire to know more.
You must now take the stairs in front of you and then go up the grey stone path to reach the heart of the hamlet. Once you have crossed the threshold the magic happens; you hear the sound of water in the fountain and soft music being played live by musicians with gentle faces, some armchairs are set out ready to welcome you so that you can fully appreciate the tranquillity of the surroundings: Welcome to HOSHINOYA Kyoto.
This village which appears to be clinging on to the slopes of the hill is a place of tranquillity and pleasure. Once you have arrived, stress disappears and your worries and cares are left far behind, and your holidays can begin. You check in and are then led to your room based on the concept of a Ryokan, traditional Japanese inns which blend tradition and modernity and in addition luxurious refinement.
During your stay, choose to “let go”. Breathe, forget everyday life and immerse yourself in one of these rituals which makes Japan fascinating. The tea ceremony is certainly the most iconic. Then Hojicha, one kind of Japanese green tea, is prepared in the room accompanied by a traditional delicious pastry, which adds to the charm and refinement of the moment. Let yourself be captivated by the incense ceremony scheduled in the late morning which will teach you a little bit more about the subtlety of the Japanese people.
Although the surroundings beckon you to rest and total relaxation, it is also an opportunity for all you food lovers to try Kaiseki cuisine. Chef Ichiro Kubota offers contemporary cuisine which is respectful of Kyoto’s culinary traditions, linking together a succession of elegant and colourful dishes, a tasty journey ingrained with refinement and Japanese precision; a meal which can be enjoyed with one of the sakes on the menu in order to fully follow the Japanese lifestyle. And when you finish why not sit in HOSHINOYA Kyoto lounge bar to sample one of the excellent Japanese whiskies available for tasting. The numerous suggestions will delight whisky lovers and convince novices.