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“Great hotel for westerners”

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Hotel Granvia Kyoto
Ranked #13 of 407 Hotels / Ryokan in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 22 November 2010

Excellent hotel in a great location. Staff did their best with English and were very helpful. Great light-show at night outdoors, and above an amazing train station and shops. While it was a bit of walk to the action center of Kyoto the location and availability of shops make this a great place to stay. Tours left from across the road and the room was clean and quiet. Certainly doesn't claim to be something that it is not.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank msdcairns
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 22 November 2010

My husband and I came to Kyoto to attend a professional conference. The Granvia is located right inside Kyoto Station..wow..the building is a contemporary hub of everything and a great location for taking the subway to the Kyoto convention center which is in an isolated location. When we arrived at the Hotel our room type was not what I thought we had booked. After expressing our unhappiness with the mix up, the clerk upgraded us to the executive floor with use of the executive lounge.(with the bed type we had requested)...What a wonderful treat. The Granvia is a modern and beautiful hotel..the rooms were large and contemporary. The service was amazing..A nice treat to have a Nespresso machine in our room..but be aware that the espresso pods and the tea were not free...so bring your own if you decide to stay here. The location was great..the Kyoto station is not what one would expect..it was full of eateries and shops including an upscale department store..the entire station was connected by underground and elevated passage ways..It was fun to explore and discover new shops and restaurants in these passageways.
The hotel staff at the executive lounge was very helpful too. The lounge was a relaxing spot providing espresso drinks, juices, ice tea and very small snacks...apparently in the style of Japanese hotels as compared to more bountiful snacks in American Hotel executive lounges. They helped us fax documents to the US as well as advising about renting bicycles for sight seeing ( a great thing to do in Kyoto) and tips on sights to see while in Kyoto. The lounge was a wonderful oasis and the staff top notch!

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled on business
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2  Thank Tova
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 November 2010

I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by this hotel. It is large and bustling, as it is located in the middle of the Kyoto station. The location is extremely convenient, as the station links to the shinkansen and the local trains. There is also a large mall connected to the station, with lots of restaurants and shops.

The rooms are extremely large by japanese standards and are very clean. The only downsides are that the rooms that face the train rail are very loud and that the rooms are quite a walk from the elevator. But the staff is extremely accommodating so you can request to change rooms. There is also every time of amenity you can think of in the rooms, even face wash and make-up remover.

Internet is free, which is certainly always a plus. Breakfast is included and there are three restaurants to choose from. The quality of food is great (as it is all over Japan). Overall, I was impressed with the hotel.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled on business
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Thank lolainlondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 November 2010

The location of this hotel is its highlight. The escalator to the hotel lobby starts at the Kyoto railway station! The rooms are spacious, with all possible amenities available, a very friendly staff.
Since I had booked through the internet, the rates were also very very reasonable.
Free internet services, concierge services are all provided.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled on business
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1  Thank Maha64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 November 2010

Arriving at 2pm from Tokyo we were told, albeit very courteously, our north facing room would not be available until 3pm, in line with hotel policy. However we were advised we could have an identical south facing room immediately. We accepted, unaware this was to be a big mistake. The room itself was spacious enough but not as well appointed as I expected for a superior room where rates start at 40,425 yen / night, no meals. My initial impression was one of disappointment. After 24 hours in the hotel, I became increasingly disappointed. After numerous attempts and the assistance of 3 very helpful members of staff it was obvious the hotel’s free Wi-Fi does not extend to anyone with an iPad. I was then told I would have to pay 100 yen per 10 mins like any non-guest to access the net. Not impressed. After 2 nights I decided neither the beds nor the pillows were very comfortable and the quality of the bathroom was way below par too but in the interests of just wanting to get on with my holiday I accepted it without complaint. But by now it had become evident the hotel’s public areas, which is owned by JR (Japan’s main rail network) and which sits directly above the massive and frankly ugly Kyoto station complex felt almost as busy at times as the station concourse itself. The hotel has 535 rooms but its public areas are way too small for such a large hotel. They are crowded and exceptionally noisy and it also has no lounge area for guests to sit and relax in peace. Not good enough. The ground floor Le Temps doubles as the breakfast room and main restaurant and whilst the quality and choice for the breakfast (taken daily) and evening buffet (taken twice) were extremely high, like the lobby and its adjacent lounge bar, its way too noisy. But the worst part is this: our room was on the 12th floor of the south tower and all these rooms directly overlook the station platforms. So whilst most trains are pretty quiet, you can still hear station announcements until late into the evening and from the crack of dawn on. These rooms should be avoided.

The hotel staff however, be it housekeeping, bellboys, reception, concierge and above all the restaurant staff are quite simply as good as you will find anywhere in the world. Certainly the best I’ve ever encountered. The problem is, the hotel as a whole is not. I can only assume it gets its 4 and half star rating because of all the facilities offered including a total of 10 restaurants. So in spite of the service levels it failed to meet my expectations by some margin. Unlike most of the public areas, the so called superior rooms / bathrooms are not just not as well equipped or furnished as they should be for over 40,000 yen per night. On our 4th day I chose to complete the guest comments card and left it with reception in which I gave the highest praise to all the staff, their attention to detail, and the overwhelming courtesy they extend to you at all times but listed a few things I believe need to be improved, dramatically in some instances, and which I concede only a major re-design of the ground floor could possibly fix. Within hours the manager thanked me for my comments and without prompting asked us to accept with his compliments one of the mini-suites on the restricted access 15th floor on the north tower. The difference was astonishing. Room size apart, it was huge, now we not only had a queen size bed each but luxurious bedding, wonderfully soft pillows, deep pile carpet, a marble bathroom and a general air of luxury, though the normal cost of all this opulence is 77,385 yen /night. But best of all, despite now overlooking the bus station, taxi rank and one of Kyoto’s busiest intersections we had total peace and quiet. Heaven at last!

If only the staff had asked us to wait for an hour when we first arrived, we could have avoided the noise of a room in the south tower, and its below par quality which probably influenced my attitude toward everything else in the hotel I found unsatisfactory. The hotel’s location is also otherwise perfect for anyone arriving by rail and wishes to visit all the main attractions of Kyoto. It has easy and direct access from the station into the hotel and is adjacent to the Isetan department store, as well as the huge station underground shopping centre with lots of restaurants to choose from. In summary, its potentially a really good hotel but way too expensive for what you get with its below par rooms and it’s let down by the design of the lobby and ground floor restaurant and resultant noise. All the staff however are as good as it gets. No-one could possibly fail to be impressed by them all. I can’t praise them highly enough. Just make sure you insist on staying in the north tower and ask for a decent room on the Granvia Floor (15th) with a comfy bed and quality bedding!

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Colin330
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Granvia Kyoto

Address: Shiokojisagaru, Karasumadori, Shimogyo-ku | JR Kyoto Station Central Gate, Kyoto 600-8216, Kyoto Prefecture
Region: Japan > Kinki > Kyoto Prefecture > Kyoto > Shimogyo-ku
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 407 Hotels / Ryokan in Kyoto
Price Range: $186 - $654 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Granvia Kyoto 4.5*
Number of rooms: 537
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful 15-story hotel atop Kyoto Station - Broadband connection in all guest and banquet rooms - Easy access to Kansai Airport. ... more   less 
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