This Japanese-Inspired Inn Is One of Mexico City's Best Kept Secrets

This Japanese-Inspired Inn Is One of Mexico City's Best Kept Secrets

By Lucy Wang
With handwoven tatami floors, rooftop onsen baths, and only 10 rooms, this Japanese-inspired hotel offers an unexpected place of zen in Mexico City.

Just around the corner from one of Mexico City’s most iconic avenues lies a surprising respite of serenity modeled after Japan’s traditional countryside inns known as ‘ryokans.’

The light-filled welcome area features an open library, seating, and a zen garden.

Wrapped in a sculptural facade inspired by the folds of origami, this unique property is Ryo Kan MX, a boutique hotel that has been billed as the "first ryokan in Latin America."

With just 10 rooms, its simple yet elegant design is the work of architect Regina Galvanduque of GLVDK Studio, who fused elements of Japanese hospitality and style with Mexican materials and cutting-edge technology.

Working together with local designers and artisans, GLVDK Studio created and selected furnishings inspired by Japanese design and crafted with Mexican materials.

From ceramics to textiles, handmade crafts can be found throughout the hotel, which heightens the sensory experience.

Tasked with developing Ryo Kan MX’s overall concept, Regina led the design of not only the architecture, but also the interiors, art, branding and tableware, all of which have been defined by locally sourced materials and textures with Japanese-inspired styling.

Shop the Look
Benjamin Moore Paint - Decorator's White
This color is part of the Designer Classics Collection. Comfortable colors that can be chosen with confidence. The Designer Classics palette features 231 tried-and-true colors - timeless beauty you can integrate into a variety of design styles and decors.

Select rooms open up to a white metal balcony, which overlooks the interior courtyard.

The zen garden placed at the heart of the ryokan is designed to "juxtapose east and west, traditional and contemporary."

The 10 rooms—each named after a Japanese number—have been styled in the image of traditional ryokan spaces, yet are updated to incorporate modern automated conveniences. 

A peek inside one of the more spacious tatami bedrooms that includes views of the interior garden, a mini bar, and an independent lounge within 225 square feet.

All rooms feature automated lighting that can be controlled using the hotel's in-house app.

"Ryo Kan MX brings to Mexico City the concept of ‘mindful hospitality,’ inspired by the values and principles of Japanese culture: simplicity, love of nature, respect for local natural materials, and community," explains the staff at the hotel. 

Sliding modular doors evoke traditional Japanese shoji-screen doors.

"We combine and present it all in a detailed-oriented style of service, in turn, creating a new outlook in responsible tourism with a fusion of Japanese and Mexican values, which will redefine the standard for a small lodge in the sprawling metropolis."

The rooms are personalized with locally sourced bejuco (a type of vine used in Mayan architecture), terrazzo, and oak.

The rooftop deck features four private onsen baths that overlook panoramic city views.

Check out Ryo Kan MX (@ryokanmx) to book your own getaway.

Project Credits:

Architect of Record: GLVDK Studio / @glvdk



Get the Dwell Travel Newsletter

Start exploring far-flung design destinations, the newest boutique hotels, and well-designed bars and restaurants perfect for the modern jetsetter.