Great place, great people!
I loved my stay at Gagakuan! There were four of us (3 women, 1 man) for our stay, and we all agree that the place and manager, Mako, raised the bar for rental homes.
First of all, i enjoyed the combination of old, atmospheric building with modern style and conveniences. You walk from the busy modern streets, turn a corner, and suddenly you are in a lovely, quiet alley of wood-trimmed old row houses. With 2 floors, the place has plenty of room to spread out. 1 full bathroom and 2 half bathrooms were much appreciated, and I have to admit the heated seats and auto flush and lighting at nights were addictive. Admittedly, there are no sound barriers between rooms, which is a reality of shoji screens and Japanese building construction.
The machiya is located near/walking distance to useful bus lines, plus some good restaurants (ask Mako), and a grocery store, pharmacy, and even a UNESCO world heritage site (don't miss Higashi (East) Hongwanji Temple and Nishi (West) Hongwanji Temple)! Take time to enjoy walking around the neighborhood, and meet locals on their morning walk and street tidy-up.
Almost as important is the care Mako and Saki took care of us. From daily emailed weather updates and local happenings, to checking in that we had enough coffee supplies, they were wonderful. They responded promptly to emails. But Mako's kindness and helpfulness more than exceeded all our hopes when one of my group started developing a chest infection, inquired about antibiotics, and Mako responded by going to 3 hospitals and calling her medical friends for advice! Mako volunteered to go with my friend to the hospital and provide translation services - this while Mako was in the middle of renovating another building! Luckily, my friend recovered on her own, but we were so grateful to know that we had an ally in a foreign land.
Thank you, Mako and Saki!
Owner's Response: Dear Alpa team
You wrote too nicely! Many thanks.
We were also very happy to have you here, and your comment gave us `Genki'= means power to go further!
As you know, we have been working on new house, it made us so tired, but knowing that guests who stayed here were happy and had a great time in foreign country makes us really happy.
Thnaks again and hope to see you in future. Mako Gagakuan
Helpful votes: 1/1
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