Kyoto Tokyu Hotel – a short but inspiring visit

Besides the premium water at Kyoto Tokyu Hotel I featured in my first post, artwork displayed throughout the hotel showcases pieces of Kyoto history. The hotel is situated adjacent to Nishi-Honganji Temple, a world heritage site, which enriches the cultural experience transcending to the hotel.

As I stepped into the hotel, a carriage is displayed, Gissha, that was once used to transport Japanese Emperors and high ranking courtiers. The carriage is pulled by an ox.

Gissha display

As I took the escalator down to the lobby – the hotel has a height restriction so public space is located below ground, I came across this very eye catching display of lanterns. It turns out that Kyoto was celebrating Gion Festival, one of Japan’s three largest festivals. The origin of the festival began about 1,000 years back when a plague infected the city (then the capital). Paper lanterns were lit with holy fire that was dedicated to a God for locals to use and was considered a sign of good luck. The month-long highlight of the festival is the Yama Hoko Junko grand procession, where 33 floats parade the city. Floats were decorated with fabrics and tapestries.

Gion Festival Lantern Display
Gion Festival lantern display at the hotel

As I walk around the hotel, art is methodically displayed unveiling Japanese culture.

There’s also a sense of calmness at the hotel. Perhaps it’s because of the abundance of greenery throughout and simplistic decor. Although I was there for work, and only stayed for one night, the environment made me slow down and appreciate the surroundings.

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