A modern take on the traditional ryokan, the sprawling resort offers luxurious calm.
Come November 1, luxury hotel group Aman will be opening a new resort in Kyoto, its third property in Japan. Located in a well-hidden garden near UNESCO World Heritage Site Kinkaku-ji Temple in Japan’s ancient former imperial capital, the ryokan-inspired property might just be Aman’s most beautiful yet.
The sprawling Aman Kyoto is located on 29 hectares of forest and manicured gardens that have been well tended for decades by the previous owner of the site—he also happens to be one of Japan’s most prolific collector of the obi (traditional kimono sash).
Inspired by the country’s famed ryokan (traditional inns) and onsen (hot springs), the resort is designed with the simplicity of traditional Japanese architecture, which blends seamlessly into the natural landscape.
Brought to life by Kerry Hill Architects, the firm that designed both Aman Tokyo and Amanemu, Aman Kyoto consists of standalone pavilions, each with a distinctive function. There’s one for arriving guests, a living room, a dining area, spa pavilions, as well as four guest pavilions with 24 rooms in total—offering either garden or stream views. Among the four guest pavilions, two are home to a pair of luxurious two-bedroom villas.
The rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows that frame the calming natural environment, tatami mats, and tokonoma (alcoves where items for artistic appreciation are placed). Light-filled and spacious, the rooms are created for contemplation and relaxation. Expect neutral colored interiors showcasing the works of local artisans, from handmade raku tile panels to ofuro bathtubs made of hinoki cypress wood, which is native to central Japan. Plus, all the furniture pieces here are exclusive to the resort.
The property’s centerpiece is the signature restaurant located in the dining pavilion, which will serve Japanese haute cuisine via multicourse kaiseki meals of the finest local produce. Meanwhile, the living pavilion offers an inspiring space with a central fireplace and glass doors that open out to a zen garden.
A stay at Aman Kyoto wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the spa, which features sunbathing facilities, using water from a local spring. Guests can pamper themselves with treatments designed around prized local ingredients, from Kyoto green tea to local sake.
More information here.