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“worth the trip: great space & food”
Review of Ryokan Ugenta

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Ryokan Ugenta
Ranked #193 of 376 Hotels / Ryokan in Kyoto
Reviewed 18 September 2013

located on a bustling but incredibly charming street with a little creek running along it. the setting, the scenery is just oozing with charm.

we stayed in the japanese room, it was incredibly spacious, the bathrooms are divine and the rooftop onsen tubs were such a treat.

Room Tip: the traditional japanese room
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  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank lollipops
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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8 - 12 of 24 reviews

Reviewed 9 April 2013

I have stayed in many ryokans in Japan, and I have to say that Ugenta is one of my top experiences. The design is not quite like a traditional ryokan but a fascinating blend of classic Japanese and contemporary modern design. The blend is seamless and it worked very well. While the design of this ryokan is modern, the service is old-school Japanese, which is to say, excellent.

Ugenta is situated in a 2-storey building along the Kibune road (and next to the river). Kibune is a small road-side town which has interesting shops and small restaurants, and it is lovely to wander about after visiting the shrine. It will probably take all of one hour to do that, so the ryokan is perfect for a getaway to do “nothing”. Of course there is the forest trail which goes up over the hill to Kurama (and other lovely temples) but again you can do that in less than 2 hours at a very slow pace (from Kibune to Kurama, and back).

We were provided with a complimentary pick-up from Kokusai Kaikan station (less than 30 mins from Kyoto Station) and from there to Ugenta it took about 20 minutes. Check-in was done in the room and we were served matcha and sweets.

Dinner was amazing – a 9-course meal of amazing presentation and meticulous cooking. I requested for a no-meat menu (fish is ok) and it was done very well. Plenty of spring vegetable, roots and flowers were used in the meal.
The wine and sake list was impressive though a little pricey (expected).

We chose the Western room. The other room is the Japanese room which is only slightly bigger. Both rooms have a private “rooftop” bath and shower, and there is nothing quite like soaking in a hot tub looking at the forest in the privacy of the ryokan. I even spotted a wild deer!
The Western room has many George Nakashima pieces (dining table, chairs, sofa, sofa table) – all very tastefully put together. It isn’t like some hotels with jarring designer pieces which gives one the sense that they are trying too hard, if you know what I mean.
The bathroom was superb – very spacious with large windows overlooking the forest. Soap and shampoo are from Lanvin, and the facial set is from Shiseido.
We didn’t use the fireplace as it wasn’t cold enough.

The service, like I mentioned earlier, was excellent. They helped us make dinner reservations in Kyoto for the next day, and accommodated our last-minute request to check out a little later than planned. The next morning, we were given a information print-out of an onsen at Kurama just because the night before we asked if there were any onsen in the area! It reminded me of the impeccable, they-know-what-you-want-even-before-you-know-it service I experienced at the Mandarin Oriental Tokyo.

I’ll go back to Ugenta again in a heartbeat if I could!

Room Tip: Western or Japanese will be just as good. The Japanese has a bigger indoor bathtub, and the dining t...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank greenflubber
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 March 2013

We booked the Western-style room and I - not having done any homework - was amazed to find original George Nakashima works being used as ordinary furniture: dining table and chairs, settee, coffee table, credenza...all beautifully kept, yet sporting the inevitable scratches and marks of daily use.

The room actually comprises the upper two stories of a 3-storey building. Large picture windows offer galllery-like views of the ryokan's carpark, adjoining road, river and the area beyond which slopes upwards to the ridge separating Kibune from the huge Kurama temple-complex. Walking back from the latter involves a picturesque 2-hour hike; in our case, it was snow-covered and uniquely enjoyable, almost spiritual.

Service is impeccable and the food is as good as a Michelin-starred (or two) restaurant's.

Room Tip: There are only two rooms to choose from. Each is self-contained and very private.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank biketrekker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2012

Ugenta offers the best ryokan room that I have ever been to. Detailed design in the room and the gorgeous food, not to mention the breathtaking onsen tubs on the top of the building.

Kibune is definitely worth visiting, and don't miss out Ugenta if you happen to be in Kibune :)

Room Tip: There are only two rooms at Ugenta. Either one will give you a perfect ryokan experience.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank ccc_1235
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2010

This ryokan was the highlight of our Japan trip... We stayed at Four Seasons, Peninsulas etc, but this was truly an experience. we had the Japanese room (there are only two rooms - one traditional and one western style) -- and we enjoyed it sooo much.

The food was to die for - but I guess for food lovers of the Japanese cuisine! Not for beginners...

The service was more than amazing as we had it basically all to ourselves! I wish we could return to Japan and to Ugenta.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank tkvu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ryokan Ugenta

Address: 76 Kuramakibunecho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 601-1112, Kyoto Prefecture
Region: Japan > Kinki > Kyoto Prefecture > Kyoto
Hotel Style:
Ranked #193 of 376 Hotels / Ryokan in Kyoto
Price Range: RM3,434 - RM4,742 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 2

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