Kyomachiya Hotel Shiki Juraku is a name that could benefit from some unpacking. Strictly speaking, Shiki Juraku is the name of the hotel, and Kyomachiya is a reference to the hotel’s unique heritage architecture. Here in Kyoto the traditional two-story merchants’ townhouses — the original live-work spaces? — are called machiya, and Shiki Juraku is less a hotel and more a neighborhood, comprising ten machiya houses converted into luxurious, spacious, impeccably crafted hotel rooms.
In fact they’re being a bit humble in calling them “rooms” — each one is a self-contained house, with the bedroom on the second floor and either a Western-style living room or a traditional Japanese tatami room on the first. For maximum extravagance, consider No. 10, with one Western and one Japanese bedroom, an open veranda, a full kitchen, and a large cypress bathtub.
As for the style, it’s historically informed, with a typically Japanese reverence for traditional craft, but it’s not strictly a period piece — contemporary furnishings and artworks share space with tatami rooms and shoji screens. Suffice it to say, it’s a novel idea, and a well-executed one at that — Shiki Juraku offers an experience that’s nothing if not memorable, and you can’t ask for much more than that.
Text Courtesy of Tablet Hotels