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The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto
An opulent riverside escape
The location of the Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto on the Kamogawa River has attracted Japanese nobles and merchants as far back as the 17th century. The hotel was built around Ebisugawa-tei, a mansion constructed entirely from cypress wood by Baron Denzaburo Fujita in 1908, which still stands in the center of its Italian restaurant, La Loconda. With views of the Higashiyama mountains in the distance, it’s easy to see how exceptionally beautiful it is—even in a city as charming as Kyoto. This picturesque spot is a mere minutes walk from Gion, the city’s geisha district, making it a convenient hub for exploration.
You’ll want to factor in plenty of downtime, too. The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto lends itself well to contemplation; there is a pretty Japanese garden to linger in, and hundreds of carefully curated pieces of local artwork to discover throughout the hotel. The dining options are world-class. Mizuki provides highly acclaimed Japanese cuisine across four traditional disciplines—sushi, tempura, teppan and kaiseki. Small and elegantly presented dishes are cooked according to the tradition of go-mi, go-syoku and go-ho (five flavors, five colors and five cooking methods). La Locanda gives Italian dishes a distinctly Japanese makeover, while Pierre Herme Paris Boutique will satisfy your sweet tooth.