Machiya Lily Is A Fully Renovated Historic Kyoto Machiya In The Heart Of Kyoto
- english, Japanese
About Mark Tracy
I'm an attorney and university professor who has lived and worked in Japan for 16 years. I've always been fascinated by traditional Japanese carpentry, Kyoto Machiya and the Japanese passion for monozukuri (making things by hand). After years of planning I finally got the chance to buy Machiya Lily and restore her. Originally, I thought it would be the perfect place to finally write the great American expat novel. Instead, I've done a lot more reading than I have writing and the books in the library reflect that fact. These days I divide my time between a house in Osaka and a cabin I'm building in the mountains of Hyogo.
Mark Tracy purchased this House in 2014
Why Mark Tracy chose Higashiyama Ward
I spent over 3 years looking at machiya in Kyoto. I knew the things I had to have and the things that I wanted to have. I had to have a place that was convenient for me and for guests but that was also quiet. I had to have a traditional garden and I wanted a house built in the Meiji period. Sanjusangendo is my favorite temple and I wanted someplace near there but I didn't want to deal with crowded streets. Finally, I wanted a place whose history I could document and which would allow me to preserve and highlight the Japanese joinery techniques that always fascinated me. When I finally found Machiya Lily I made an offer the same day. It looked nothing like it does today but I could tell that the joinery was still there and that she had everything I had to have and most of what I wanted. The restoration took almost two years but we managed to preserve almost all of her original joinery and to complete the rest using traditional techniques. From my own perspective, I couldn't be happier with the results or with the fantastic people I met during the process. If you're interested in more details on this type of restoration, please visit the website.
What makes this House unique
For me, the architectural history and joinery will always stand out. We really did focus on every detail in this restoration to preserve the history but to add in the modern comfort that we all need. The doors in the living room were a fantastic find (I don't get credit for them) and the hand painted Kyoto paper on the accent wall is a classic touch with modern influence. The kitchen cabinet is made from a mizuya and I doubt there is another like it in Japan. All of the bamboo blinds in the home are hand made by Mr. and Mrs. Kubota whose family has been making blinds in Kyoto since 1883. Visiting their shop and getting to know their family was a unique Kyoto experience. Sano san spent more time with me than I could have expected to make sure that the tsuboniwa (garden) would create the perfect space and the perfect sound. Several of my sempai contributed art pieces and books for the home and I can't walk through without thinking of each of them. Each of my friends seems to have the one thing about Lily which stands out for them but for me, she's all of a piece.
Check-in: 2:00 PM
Check-out: 11:00 AM
ACCOMMODATION RULES 1. Smoking is NOT allowed. 2. People other than those in the Guest party may not stay overnight in the property. Any other person in the property is the sole responsibility of Guest. 3. Machiya Lily is privately owned; the owners are not responsible for any accidents, injuries or illness that occurs while on the premises. The owners are not responsible for the loss of personal belongings or valuables of the guest. All guests expressly assume the risk of any harm arising from their use of the premises by completing their reservation. 4. The Guest will be charged for any damages of the building and furnishings that were caused by those in the Guest party. 5. Only use appliances for their intended uses 6. Pets are NOT allowed. 7. Housekeeping : There is no daily housekeeping service. Linens and bath towels are included in the unit, daily maid service is not included in the rate. Do not remove towels or linens from the property. 8. Guests should avoid causing a noise disturbance for the neighbors. 9. DO NOT FLUSH anything other than toilet paper. No feminine products should be flushed at any time. If it is found that feminine products have been flushed and clog the septic system, you could be charged damages. Machiya Lily is an authentic Kyo-Machiya licensed and inspected by the City of Kyoto, it meets all fire and safety regulations set forth by the City of Kyoto. It is equipped with emergency lighting, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, emergency flashlights, and a phone-line. - Machiya Lily has been restored to maintain its historic character and to comply with the regulations governing historic buildings in Kyoto. For example, Shioji (window coverings) are made of real Washi (Japanese handmade paper). The Fusuma (sliding partitions) are all period pieces so please open and close the doors and windows carefully. - A Kyo-Machiya is designed to breathe; this allows the Machiya to be comfortable all year round. Kyo-Machiya are made primarily of natural materials and the layout allows for air to flow from the front of the Machiya to the back. This is part of the character of Machiya Lily. If you open the windows at the front, and back of the Machiya there is a natural flow of air. This works to ventilate the Machiya, and keep it cool during the summer. - Machiya Lily has a modern Japanese style bath with a deep bath tub, wash area with wash basin, and dressing area. Even though it is modern, the design and usage is Japanese. Please only soak in the bath tub. No soap products are to be used in the tub. The Japanese etiquette for bathing is to wash thoroughly first, and then relax in the deep bath tub. Please remember this point if you are going to visit a Sento (public bath) or an Onsen (a traditional Japanese Inn). - All Kyo-machiyas have some Tatami flooring. Machiya Lily has traditional tatami flooring in the back room of the first floor. This flooring is made from rice straw to form the core and Igusa straw (soft rush straw) for the covering. The natural material of tatami flooring allows it to stain very easily. Do not place or leave any wet, damp, or moist items on the TATAMI, it will stain. - - Machiya Lily has a Tsuboniwa (small Japanese garden measuring approximately 5 square meters). The elements included are a Mizubachi (Japanese water feature) and a Japanese maple tree. Please enjoy the scenery. The water feature is on an automatic timer and will turn on three times throughoutt the day. DO NOT smoke in the garden. - Please keep the noise to a minimum, sounds travel easily in a Machiya. - Machiya Lily is equipped with high speed fiber-optic internet connection via Wi-Fi, and cable television. - The toilets and air conditioners/heaters operate to latest environmental standards. Please keep the environment in mind when using these appliances. - Many of the light fittings are original and difficult to replace. Please take care. - No Smoking inside or outside of Machiya Lily. - It is a Japanese custom to remove shoes before entering into a home. Machiya Lily is designed so that you can wear your shoes in the front room (living room) but should remove your shoes before stepping up into the rest of the home. Slippers are provided and you may wear these slippers throughout the home. - No pets are allowed in Machiya Lily.
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
Authentic but updated
We couldn't be happier with our stay at Tomoko and Marks property. The home was extremely authentic yet updated, clean and spacious. It was in an ideal location, walking distance from the station, food mart, river and sightseeing. We highly recommend renting this home for a stay in Kyoto.
A lovely home in an excellent location
We had a wonderful time exploring Kyoto from this lovely home. Communication with our host was excellent, and we really appreciated a tour of the location and help in using the luggage forwarding service.
We were fascinated by the careful renovation of the property, and loved its location for walking to the station, the subway and the many nearby sights. We would recommend it highly.
The host is thoughtful.
1) He arranged my elderly parents to sleep at level one bedroom considering the inconvenience of climbing up the stairs.
2) offered his help on booking restaurants in advance before our stay
3) suggested places of interests and restaurants based on our likes
The place is convenient with buses to a lot of places of interests and near to Kyoto station.
I would love to be back again and recommend this place to my friends :)
Meticulous attention to detail
Highly recommend Machalily. A lot of thought and care has been put into the property giving it a perfect blend of tradition with modern luxuries. Centrally located and easily accessible to everything we wanted to visit, via waking , cabs or using the train system. Thanks to Mark for organizing tours, dinners and generally acting as our personal concierge. A lovely space to unwind in after long days of sightseeing.
First time in Japan and in Kyoto, amazing experience
Excellent stay in this house! Only to recommended.
Super clean, super easy location, the facility have everything including full amenities. Our stay in Japan could not be better without staying in this house. Thank you very much.