This is a small machiya located in one of the most picturesque parts of Kyoto, Gion district which is kyoto's most famous traditional area is in walking distance. If you are looking for the very KYOTO experience, this is a perfect location.
This house is completely renovated in 2010, Very comfortable and cozy space for a small group after a long day of sightseeing!
Location: Very close to Kiyomizu Temple, Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto’s most famous cherry blossom viewing site Maruyama Park, and etc. The location, Sanjyo area is perfect spot for everyone. It is very convenient location, the kyoto's biggest street SHIJYO street is just around the corner, and yet still very quiet at night. You can find everything in a walking distance. Ancient temples, museums, restaurants, bars, cute cafes, shops, department stores - it's all here! Also the bus stop and train station are very close to the house, (literally 30 sec by walking to the bus stop and 2 minutes to the train station.) so it's very easy access to all other areas in Kyoto!
There is a famous Kamo river close to the house, you can have a day or night picnic by the river if the weather in nice out.
House: The house is very modern sophisticated Machiya , yet has a very old Japanese feel to it. Inside of the house was renewed in the late 2010, but we reused some of the materials that was used in the old house from more than 100 years ago, it gives very unique antique taste! The house has a small basic kitchen with a little fridge and microwave, Full bathroom with bath tub, and even a small garden! One bedroom is in upstairs and has 1 single bed and 1 double bed, the other one is Japanese Tatami room in downstairs that also can be used as a living room.
I grew up in Japan (Hyogo) and spend almost half of my life outside the country, and every time I came home, I would go visit Kyoto dreaming about living there. I love everything related to art, design, and traveling.
Misaki Sano purchased this townhome in 2010
This property was a very old traditional Machiya located in a very convenient location where you can feel and experience a real Kyoto life. I thought it would be a perfect location for people who travels to kyoto and want to experience Kyoto.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at this Machiya. It's a great crossroads as it's an easy walk to Gion, Sanjo station, the Pontocho district, and Kiyamachi St. across the river.
The beds were very comfortable, the place was clean, and the shower had great water pressure. Mimi was very responsive and flexible, and we had no issues getting in or out of the place.
The traditional charm of the machiya only added to our magical experience in Kyoto. We hope to be back in the future!
This machiya looks exactly as charming as the pictures suggest. It's clean and comfortable, with a really great shower. Mimi Sano was helpful and responsive. We stayed 3 nights and wish we'd had one or two more. We could walk to almost everything we wanted to see, and were grateful to have a quiet, relaxing place to come home to each night.
We did have to ask a passerby to help us find the house the first day, once we'd made it to the right street - look for the small "Cotoriya" sign to the right of the door.
The machiya has indeed been remodeled with a lot of care, and is the perfect base in Kyoto for a couple or small family. The location cannot be beat, easily access to various parts of Kyoto via bus or subway, and the stations and bus stops are just minutes' walk from the house. There are also many restaurants and bars (Beer Komachi down a little alley near the Higashiyama station gets the thumbs up) in the neighborhood. We visited in winter and although the house itself was cozy thanks to the heating function in the aircond, the bathroom is a different story. Wayy too cold…I think a small heater here would just about make this house perfect :)
Will definitely return.
Perfect Kyoto feel in great location. Exquisite remodel.
So nice we're moving in! (Just kidding Mimi-san!) But we had such a good time here that we extended our stay in Kyoto-- and are already making plans to come back! The machiya is an authentic experience-- my Japanese relatives were very impressed when we told them where we were staying. The renovation is really nicely done and mimics what you see in the finest old/museum structures (wooden sliding screens, tatami, exposed beams). The bath house is a neat touch (though a bit of hike from the bedroom in the middle of the night) and again is just the right combination of traditional style and completely modern function (yes, the fancy toilet). We loved staying in a real neighborhood; we made friends with the vegetable market guy's mom (we THINK we made friends with her; she was rattling off so much Japanese we didn't know for sure) and really felt like we 'lived' there. As the other reviews say, it's a super convenient location for tourist sites (we never used the subway in Kyoto only because walking was so easy to everything we wanted). Breakfast at the French bakery, gyoza across the street, a laundromat right there too, small city-style groceries, a short walk down to the river where all the locals go at night to cool off (near a Starbucks!) all the good restaurants are walking distance. There's lots of shopping too, although we are not much shoppers. We did visit the Nishiki Food Market where, if we'd had a bigger kitchen we might have gotten food to prepare at home (I think Mimi-san's other property does have a real kitchen) but there were lots of other things to buy (handmade knives being a favorite, many antique/old kimonos). And right down the street from the machiya was a wonderful Kembu (samurai) show/program. It sounds kinda goofy but we and our 15-year-old son loved it-- there's a performance and then an opportunity to "try yourself". The machiya itself is beautifully appointed and everything works perfectly. ONE word of warning-- even the taxi driver had trouble finding it (we used the super secret Japanese phone number for help). I would stick with the other reviewer's direction: from the McDonald's, look to the southwest corner, then turn right down the alley. There's a small Cotoriya sign, and the neighbors, even when we arrived in the dark, were happy to try to help. Cab drivers can't get down the alley though so you will have to walk about 50 steps to the door. But it's definitely worth it. Thanks so much for making the machiya available!!
We loved the elegant machiya and its neighbourhood. The two beds were comfortable and we loved the buckwheat pillows if that's what they were. There are excellent restaurants nearby plus the museum district, the Heian Shrine, etc are a pleasant amble away along a canal. Many thanks to the host for her prompt responses.