Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Review of Hotels

"+" are good points, "=" are neutral points of interest, ">" are negatives for me.
(Update 25 June: Added links to Hotels on Agoda.com site)

International Garden Hotel Narita
+ Room was decent in size
+ Free shuttle from Airport
+ Staff spoke English and volunteered information freely on transport
> Isolated, this is really a transit hotel (as in you're only here cos you're on your way elsewhere.
> In-house restaurant was about the only food option
> Buffet dinner at Y2200 per person was pricy.

Hotel Route Inn Abashiri
+ Convenient location - near train station, near car rental, near two other food outlets, and another 2 not too far away.
+ Shuttle bus from Airport - Y840.
+ Room quite large by Japanese standard
+ Complimentary breakfast with mainly Japanese items, some "international" items
= Staff could understand enough English
= Japanese style common bath (not of interest to me).

Loisir Hotel, Asahikawa
+ Staff could speak English
+ Coin Laundry
+ Convenience Store across the road (Seico Mart I believe).
+ Tokiwa Park just 5 minutes walk.
+ Midori-bashi Dori (shopping street) within 5 minutes walk.
+ Lots of restaurants nearby.
> Room a little small. Not the smallest, but cramped.
> It was a non-smoking room, but it smelled of smoke. As a consolation, there was a spray bottle of odour eliminator. Helped a little.

Mercure Hotel, Sapporo
+ Room was larger
+ Easily access to Susukino and Hosuisusukino subway stations.
+ Gyu-kaku (table grill restaurant - get the 90 minute all-you-can-eat buffet deal!) just across the street
+ Near Daiso 100 yen shop
+ Near Nakajima Park
+ Complimentary shuttle bus to Train Station

Hotel Ekimae, Hakodate
+ Next to Train Station
+ Next to Car Rental
+ Next to Bus terminal
+ Tram stop nearby
+ 7-11 just below the hotel.
= Traditional Tatami mat and roll-away bedding room
> Small room (roll away bedding helps)

Hotel Route Inn, Kawaguchiko
+ Room quite large
+ View of Mt Fuji
+ View of Lake Kawaguchi
+ Complimentary Breakfast (Breakfast coupon was beautiful)
> No bus to Hotel (except for the sightseeing bus), and a bit far to walk.
> No restaurants open after dark (we got food from the convenience store in town) - may be off-season when we were there.

Kyoto Garden Ryokan Yachiyo Hotel
+ For a traditional Japanese Ryokan experience
+ Keiseki Dinner had the economical option (about Y4000+ per person)
+ Dinner table was a faux traditional table. There was a foot well under the table so we could sit as we are accustomed to, instead of kneeling Japanese-style.
+ Room was very large, beautiful, if a little faded.
+ Near the Nanzenji Temple
= Roll-away bedding/mattress

Kyoto Dai-Ni Tower Hotel
+ Came with complimentary tickets to the Kyoto Tower
+ Bicycles available for loan/rent
+ Next to Kyoto train station
+ Higashi-Honganji temple about 10 minutes away (but renovations going on)
+ Near the Kyoto Tower (not a plus for me, but for others)
+ Room was larger than Japanese standard

Shinjuku Prince Hotel
+ Early check in (noon onwards)
+ In Shinjuku, Kabuki - exciting place (we saw an altercation).
+ Lots of eateries, shopping in the vicinity
+ Bell staff was quite helpful (but seemed over worked).
+ Good location, just a little confusing to get to in the first place
> Room was really small (should have taken up offer to upgrade to bigger room for Y3000).
> Hard to find initially. Would be good if they put a big lighted sign on the building.

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