Four Seasons adds a brand new hotel to its portfolio with the opening of the Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto in fall 2016.
Set in a 12th century traditional Japanese garden at the foot of mount Higashiyama, right at the heart of the city’s ancient temple district and only minutes from Kyoto’s centre, the Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto offers luxury travelers an ideal location from which to discover Japan’s most historical city.
For those who find the neon and general quirkiness of Tokyo too much to handle, Kyoto, is the perfect antidote.
Head past the skyscrapers of downtown and slip into the narrow alleyways of the entertainment and residential districts, and Japan’s former capital offers a rare glimpse of a time gone by.
Geisha’s in traditional attire and face paint are a common site. You’ll see them being carted around in hand pulled rickshaws or tip toeing past in their high heeled clogs.
The wooden exteriors of Ryokans and traditional Kyoto homes are all around, and if you’re lucky enough to be visiting in Fall or Spring, the colors surrounding the mountain temples and streets makes for postcard perfect pictures everywhere you turn.
But if you’re not a local, you’re likely to miss what makes this city so unique.
“Kyoto is one of the world’s most alluring cities, but she can be shy in revealing her secrets – our mission at Four Seasons is to help our guests discover her wonders and experience all the city has to offer” says General Manager Alex Porteous.
To help their guests on their path of discovery, the Four Seasons enlisted the help of Hana Morioka, a Kyoto born Experience Creator who promises to unveil the city’s secrets by taking them to the most exclusive spots and experiences in Kyoto.
This includes introducing guests to the city’s varied cuisine, from the lesser known gems, to prestigious Michelin star eats. Lovers of the culinary arts will have the opportunity of adding a prized piece to their arsenal, their very own Aritsugu blade; one of the finest cooking knives in the world made by the former sword suppliers of the Imperial Palace.
What to expect
Rooms and suites designed by Californian firm Hirsch Bedner Associates offer views onto the hotel’s Japanese garden, the secluded Myoho-in temple and Higashiyama Mountains. In line with the city’s atmosphere, the Four Seasons incorporates elements of Japanese tradition into the room’s designs, with tatami inspired walls and shoji paper lamps for a unique sense of place.
When it comes to the dining options, the hotel bows low to Japan’s rich culinary heritage.
At the Sushi Wakon, on the third floor of the hotel overlooking the pond garden, an intimate dining experience awaits. Using only the catch of the day, Michelin star Chef Rei Masuda, crafts his sushi with the utmost care, and places them on a counter carved from a 200 year old Hinoki tree as up to 10 guests observe his movements in anticipation. Two private dining rooms are also available.
On the hotel’s grounds, in the 800 year old Ikeniwa (pond garden), at the end of a glass bridge, enjoy the peacefulness and flavors of the tea ceremony in the hotel’s tea house Shakusui-Tei, amid the peaceful trees and waters of the pond. Contemporary dining options are available at the Lounge and Brasserie.
The brand new Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto is not yet part our collections. Watch this space for a follow up as soon as we’ve inspected it.