The entrance of Chion-in Wajun-kaikun in Higashiyama affords a clear view of Chionin temple (Photo: Hoyee Tse)

Chion-in Wajun-kaikun Hotel

Stay in the peaceful heart of Higashiyama

The entrance of Chion-in Wajun-kaikun in Higashiyama affords a clear view of Chionin temple (Photo: Hoyee Tse)
Hoyee Tse   - 3 min read

In Kyoto the Zen temples are no doubt some of the greatest sights in this ancient capital. Their historical values certainly play a significant role. In addition to that, the peaceful atmosphere of the temples can calm the heart and cleanse our mind from the vivacious and turbulent world outside.

If this is the feeling you are looking for, then Chionin Wajun-kaikun would suit you. A modern white building only a minute away from Chionin Temple, its location serves to immerse yourself in the peaceful atmosphere of the temple, so that you are part of it, instead of simply viewing it. It can be a spiritual experience. The interior design of rooms are consistent with the surroundings. The furniture is all made of wood, in dark brown like the thousand year old trees that are used in building the temple. The twin room with two single beds, though in Western style, still preserves the Zen atmosphere. As a new hotel, the bathroom is modern and of minimalist design with quiet brown and white colors, spacious yet comfortable with imported bathroom wares. The ceramic tea set is consistent with this less-is-more approach, simply blue with the symbol of chrysanthemum.

The wood theme continues in the corridor and lobby. Japanese culture is based on its respect and affinity with nature, from which it derives its values and peaceful philosophy. The art works in this hotel take on this theme, using minimal colors, and the chairs have clean geometrical shapes. The front gardens next to the main entrance blends the hotel with the mountain at the back and Maruyama park nearby. The stream meanders through the garden until its end as a waterfall to the pool at the basement, looking like a gorge.

Though the hotel is not grand in style and size, it has the facilities you would expect from a larger hotel. On the basement a large Japanese bath with a changing room is available. Two function rooms are also there: one in Japanese style and one in Western. Both can cater for more than a hundred people, making them suitable for small to medium sized events. Next to the reception, a souvenir store sells Kyoto and religious products. A small cafe adjacent serves drinks and snacks while a Japanese restaurant at another side of the building serves delicate Kyoto cuisine. The staff here are known for their attention to detail, and their warm manner makes it easy for guests to make the most out of this hotel.

Hoyee Tse

Hoyee Tse @hoyee.tse

Art, architecture, comics and fashion, every aspect of culture is fascinating. To me, the interplay between innovation and tradition is the greatest attraction of Japan.