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Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko

2482-1 Chugushi, Nikko 321-1661 Tochigi Prefecture
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Traveller (321)
Room & Suite (67)
Dining (48)
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.


#14 of 163 hotels in Nikko
Travellers' Choice
Expansive views of Lake Chuzenji and Mount Nantai delight nature lovers in every season. After a day of hiking or taking in the many sights of Nikko, unwind in beautifully landscaped open-air and traditional cypres baths.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Hot bath
Shuttle bus service
Full body massage
Breakfast available
Complimentary tea
Complimentary welcome drink
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Room features
Air conditioning
Private balcony
Coffee / tea maker
Flatscreen TV
Bath / shower
Wardrobe / wardrobe
Bottled water
Private bathrooms
Wake-up service / alarm clock
Electric kettle
Complimentary toiletries
Hair dryer
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Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
Good to know
Lake View
Great View
Languages Spoken
English, Japanese
154Reviews3Q+A10Room tips
Traveller rating
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Popular mentions
KI-NRT wrote a review Sep 2021
San Jose, California1242 contributions239 helpful votes
After 2 nights in the main Nikko area (staying at the spectacular Fufu Nikko), we chose to overnight in Oku-Nikko to tour Kegon Falls and do some hiking in the area. While it was a pleasant stay, Kai Nikko was a massive step down when compared to the fresh, new and luxurious Fufu Nikko. I've previously leveled criticism at various Hoshino resorts in the past, and most of them apply here - decent but not amazing food, the lack of Onsen (natural mineral hot springs) baths in the rooms, a bit of a corporate feel, slow check-in process and a bit too communal of an experience. As was the case with Kai Tsugaru, Hoshino's Nikko property has definitely seen its better days. The exterior is downright unpleasant - it really, really needs a refurbish in the worst way, beginning with a fresh new paint job. And while there are charming touches in terms of interior decor (numerous nooks and crannies featuring an assortment of ikebana, bonsai, figurines, written scrolls, etc.), there's no getting around the property's age, and it even smalls a bit run down as well. To start with - for those of you looking for the classic luxury Onsen ryokan experience, I'll get straight to the point - you should look elsewhere. There are no in-room Onsen baths, even in the top suites (only communal ones are available, as well as one rental Onsen that will be hard to reserve given that it's only one), and Kai Nikko offers Samue (looks like spa pajamas) instead of a Yukata. And the Samue are not at all stylish. We booked the top suite at Kai Nikko - the massive, 170m² lake-view suite (room category "TK6.") It was downright cavernous, but the layout was confusing... tons of small rooms with short hallways that was very disorienting to us. It was definitely not the best use space. If they wanted to cater to the luxury demographic with an uncompromising Suite, they really should have allocated some space for an Onsen bath as well as a dining area (with an option to have meals served in the room.) Basically, it was a decently-appointed room that was super sized, but was not attractive or fresh in a way that would have done the top category room justice. Given that we're in the COVID-19 era, we prefer not to partake in communal bathing, so the public Onsen baths were not an option to us. Fortunately, Kai Nikko has one private free-flowing, open-air Onsen bath that you can rent. Unfortunately, it's subject to availability and comes at a cost of 3300 yen (roughly $30 USD.) We were fortunate enough to secure a time slot before dinner, but at full capacity I can't imagine too many people successfully booking a slot, given that the times are spread out by 90 minutes (1 hour of use followed by 30 minutes of cleaning by staff.) The Kaiseki dinner at Kai Nikko was equally underwhelming. While it's "good" (it's very hard to find a bad meal in Japan, mind you), good is not enough in an industry that offers great meals across the board. Nothing was inedible, but several of the dishes were ones that we didn't care to consume the calories to finish. This was in stark contrast to Fufu Nikko, which offered courses after courses (many more so than Kai Nikko, by the way) of exceptionally creative and flavorful courses that were also meticulously explained by the server. Our dinner server at Kai Nikko was charming and worked hard, but she just didn't have quite the command of every ingredient as the lady that served us at Fufu Nikko. The one thing we do appreciate is the special performances that are on offer at most "Kai" properties. In Nikko, they've devised a "dance" using the famous (but impractical) Nikko-style "Geta" (Japanese wooden clogs) as a way to promote the local artisans that still produce the local Geta. While the dance is in no way traditional or historic in any way, it's performed by members of the staff and it's good entertainment. It's a good way to learn an aspect of the local culture and traditions, and be entertained at the same time. With a total of 33 rooms, Kai Nikko is a "tweener" in size - larger than most top luxury ryokans, but smaller than a typical hotel. However, at the price point they charge, they should offer services and amenities such as valet parking, more flexible meal time options, a pool/gym and laundry service, which they don't. In other words, it does not offer the benefits of a top ryokan nor does it offer the amenities and services of a luxury hotel (check out the Ritz-Carlton Nikko for an example of the latter.) I believe that Hoshino Resorts is well aware of the property's shortcomings, however, given that its price point is well below that of competing properties in Nikko. It's perfectly fine if you keep your expectations in check. The problem is, Hoshino markets its brand as if it's the end all, be all of aspirational luxury property stays in Japan, which, from our experience so far, it definitely is not.
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Date of stay: September 2021
Response from Hoshino_Resorts, お客様担当マネージャー at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Responded 4 weeks ago
Dear KI-NRT-sama, Thank you for taking to time to write an honest, thoughtful review and for sharing your lovely photos. We appreciate your sincere comments regarding our property and quality of service we offer, which have been duly noted. While we sincerely apologize for failing to exceed your expectations, we are relieved that you were able to enjoy our performance. Your candid thoughts on management of our property will be shared with the rest of the team as we continue working to improve our services and evolve our product. Our services strive to provide not only a comfortable, but also an authentic experience for our guests. We hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back to one of our accommodations to show you just how we are evolving. Sincerely,
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Bixier G wrote a review Oct 2020
Tokyo, Japan964 contributions170 helpful votes
Hotel's Favourite
Start with a positive. From our suite we had excellent lakeview. The staff is very polite and friendly. In the Nikko area, I consider this hotel one of the best, if not the best. Having said so, I was personally slightly disappointed. We choose this location on my wife’s (Japanese) request staying in a Hoshino brand resort. My expectations were very high. Comparing to top Hotels in different areas in Japan like Koshinosato (Shibata) or Sekaie (Atami) you play in a slightly lower league here. No valet parking, no coffee machine in the room, old electrical installations. The furniture had its best days. Still acceptable but could be refurbished. Just to mention a few. The food is 0K but nothing very impressive. Again, the hotel is certainly considered to be in the luxury class and is nice to stay. But don’t expect this hotel to be absolutely outstanding because of the brand. At the end of the day there’s a question of personal preferences. My wife absolutely enjoyed it.
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Date of stay: October 2020Trip type: Travelled with family
2 Helpful votes
Response from Hoshino_Resorts, お客様担当マネージャー at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Responded 16 Nov 2020
Dear bixierg, Thank you for taking the time to share a review. It is great to hear that you enjoyed the lake view of Nikko and were satisfied with our staff. However, we regret that we were unable to meet your expectations during your recent stay, as our services strive to provide a comfortable and quality experience for all guests. We appreciate your honest feedback and have shared your concerns with the rest of the team so that we can continue improving our services and welcome you to one of our accommodations in the near future! Sincerely,
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Frequenttraveller076 wrote a review Aug 2020
Japan188 contributions164 helpful votes
Located on Japan's highest-altitude lake, with spectacular Kegon Falls less than 15 minutes of a walk away, the hotel is distinguished by its prime location. Its well-trained staff, mostly speaking very good English, are faultlessly polite- but not always as helpful as one might wish. This is a property, within a hotel group, where rules matter more than outcomes and hospitality is subordinated to the rules. (One spectacular misfire in the rules department: the bus station to return to Nikko, an agreeable 40 minutes drive along glorious scenery, is less than a kilometer from the hotel, but the return trip to the station is steep walk uphill all the way. When I inquired if one of the staff might drop me off, the answer was an uncompromising no, in spite of my advanced age and a couple of pieces of luggage. The hotel clearly expects its guests to arrive in swanky cars, which, mostly, they do, and make no accommodation for the deplorable rest of us. A major own goal! An occasional shuttle ride on demand to the bus stop would hardly cost the hotel much.) Many strong features were also on display: for example, superb Japanese food and views that would be truly great were it not for Japan's omnipresent and singularly ugly electrical wires intruding unpleasantly, and a basic elegance that is the hallmark of this hotel group. Alas, the male onsen (shared baths) was monumental rather than attractive or particularly welcoming. The giveaway that the hotel is well past its prime is the discoloration on its exterior paint-job (which could be readily tended to). Antiquated televisions featuring not one international, foreign language channel, and decorative style choices from another age don't help much either. At these prices Hoshino can and must do better.
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Date of stay: August 2020
Sleep Quality
Room Tip: In this hotel, a lake view is the whole point
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1 Helpful vote
Response from Hoshino_Resorts, お客様担当マネージャー at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Responded 1 Sep 2020
Dear Frequenttraveller076, Thank you for taking the time to share a thoughtful review. Firstly, I regret to hear that your recent visit did not meet your expectations. Our team sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience you may have experienced during your stay. Your candid thoughts on the shuttle ride will be shared with the rest of the team. We will have our staffs well-trained to respond flexibly considering the customer's position. without being bound by rules. On the other hands, we are happy to hear that you have enjoyed the views of Nikko. We appreciate your honest feedback and have shared your concerns with the rest of the team so that we can continue improving our services and welcome you to one of our accommodations in the near future! Sincerely、
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Lisa K wrote a review Mar 2020
San Francisco, California4 contributions1 helpful vote
My family and I are among the many who regretfully had to cancel travel plans due to the COVID-19 outbreak. KAI Nikko was our "splurge" hotel and we were so excited about the hotel's lakeside location, the free winter shuttle, the onsen, and the amazing food we would experience (our booking was for 3/31-4/2/2020). I booked through a third-party site and chose the nonrefundable rate. This trip was something I had planned for 10 months and spent countless hours researching for my family of 4. There was NO way we were canceling, so I didn't think much of the risk of a nonrefundable rate. Fast forward to late March 2020 and we are all living in a very different world. KAI Nikko's response to our plea to refund the reservation, or let us reschedule, was kind and swift. They had every legal right to keep our money (over $1,100 USD), but they took a customer-first approach and offered a full refund. I could not be more grateful (other brands, like the Sakura Cross Hotel in Tokyo have been steadfast in their refusal to refund or re-book us; a $900 loss, despite repeated pleas to reconsider). How customers are treated in times of strife really speaks to the brand's character and philosophy. I will forever be a fan of Hoshino Resorts and the KAI brand and I can't wait to finally make it to the lake!
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Date of stay: March 2020
1 Helpful vote
Response from 世生子 飯田, 支配人 at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Responded 22 Mar 2020
Dear Adventurer562063, Thank you for taking the time to review KAI Nikko. We are very sorry to hear that you had to cancel your trip this time around. However, we are pleased to hear that we were able to assist you to the fullest despite these unforeseen circumstances. We wish you all the best throughout this time, and we look forward to the day when we will be able to welcome you to KAI Nikko sometime in the near future! Please take care. Sincerely, Guest Relations Manager
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T N wrote a review Feb 2020
1 contribution
We stayed in a room that overlooked the lake. The room was fairly large but cozy, with lots of amenities (including a large bath). The staff, from the moment we arrived to when we left, were excellent. They anticipated our needs in the warmest, thoughtful way. The front desk assistant who spoke excellent English when we checked out was especially notable for his professionalism and warmth.
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Date of stay: February 2020
Response from 世生子 飯田, 支配人 at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Responded 3 Mar 2020
Dear 801thinhn, Thank you very much for a great review! We are happy to hear that you had an enjoyable time at KAI Nikko and that our staff members were able to assist you to the fullest as needed. We hope you to see you at KAI or another one of our resorts sometime in the near future! Sincerely, Guest Relations Manager
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US$422 - US$902 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
JapanKantoTochigi PrefectureNikkoChuzenji Onsen
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Frequently Asked Questions about Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko
Which popular attractions are close to Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Nearby attractions include Lake Chuzenji (0.3 km), Chuzenji Dam (0.3 km), and Tochigi Prefectural Nikko Natural Science Museum (0.4 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free wifi, an on-site restaurant, and free parking.
Which room amenities are available at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Top room amenities include air conditioning, a flat screen TV, and a refrigerator.
What food & drink options are available at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Guests can enjoy an on-site restaurant, breakfast, and complimentary tea during their stay.
Is parking available at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Conveniently located restaurants include Tonkatsu Asai, European Romankan Chez Hoshino, and Sushi Kurosaki.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Yes, guests have access to a sauna during their stay.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including English and Japanese.
Are there any historical sites close to Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko?
Many travellers enjoy visiting Nikko Futarasan Jinja Chugushi Shrine (1.0 km), Nishi Rokuban Garden (1.3 km), and Matsuo Basho Monument (7.3 km).
Does Hoshino Resorts KAI Nikko have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the lake view available here.