The refurbishment of this hotel brought it back to life by adding the new to what is old and good. Kiya Ryokan is a time-honored hotel. It was founded in 1911 and is located in the city of Uwajima, a former small castle town with a population of 90,000, in the south of Ehime Prefecture. Overlooking beautiful Sea of Uwa, the city is home to a leading pearl culture industry and the venue of the bull fighting held five times a year. The city is not as crowded as it was before the economic bubble burst and it is now a quiet seaside destination for those who favor historic and soothing environments.
Kiya Ryokan sits on the corner of the downtown district, right to the south of Uwajima Castle. The hotel is reminiscent of the Meiji era; it is a two-story wooden building that once hosted eminent people including politicians, writers and academics until it went out of business in 1995. It reopened in the spring of 2012 as a unique facility combining accommodation with art. Yuko Nagayama redesigned it under the concept of “the significance of being ‘ there’ from the start. The possibilities of a new place born by subtracting from what is already ‘ there’”. As a result, the hotel has kept its original Japanese-style architecture joined with modernity, creating a cozy environment for guests.
Although Kiya Ryokan reopened as a hotel, it does not offer guests individual rooms. Instead you hire the entire place, which can sleep two to 10 people. After you meet hotel staff and check in, you are left unattended and the place is all yours. You are free to use four rooms upstairs and two connectable rooms on the first floor, with two restrooms on each floor and a spacious bathroom. There is a kitchenette with cutlery and utensils for guests who prefer to cook for themselves.
While the hotel gives you an opportunity stay in a traditional Japanese mansion, it also gives you an artistic experience with its many attractions and surprises. For instance, there is a room with a floor made of transparent acrylic board, where you are able to see what is under your feet, and a space where you can enjoy changing the colors of the LED lights. You will be served with nice bread and beverages in the morning and staff will be there when you leave. You will certainly enjoy your stay to the full without being bothered by anything or anyone, here in Kiya Ryokan.
INFORMATION - KIYA RYOKAN
How to get there:
JR Uwajima station is 80 minutes by train from JR Matsuyama Station（special express JR Yosan Line). Kiya Ryokan is five minutes by taxi (or a 15-minute walk) from the train station.
One night: 21,600 yen for the hotel + 5,400 yen per person
Capacity: 2 to 10 people
- With continental breakfasthttp://www.kiyaryokan.com/en/
Online booking: https://www.kiyaryokan.com/en/order/order.php