Wondering where to stay in Kyoto? If you are looking for a home away from home in a modern hotel with traditional Japanese elements, you don’t want to miss this detailed hotel review of Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle.
The MI and MARU in MIMARU stand for the Japanese words “minna” (everyone) and “tomaru” (to stay). Perfectly suited for short and long-term stays, Mimaru Hotels are loved by families with kids, bigger groups of friends, and couples.
Mimaru Hotels offer large apartment-style rooms with a kitchen, dining area, and ultimate comfort in the best areas of Kyoto, Osaka, and Tokyo. With a diverse range of accommodations, Mimaru Hotels caters to the unique desires and preferences of its guests, ensuring that every stay is truly exceptional.
We were lucky to visit Kyoto and Osaka together with Mimaru Hotels and it was the highlight of our trip. Considering that we have spent the past few months traveling, having a fully equipped apartment with all the hotel amenities was absolutely priceless.
But let’s dive in and see what is so special about Mimaru Hotels and why it is one of the best places to stay in Kyoto. This article offers a comprehensive review of Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle formerly known as Mimaru Kyoto Horikawa Rokkaku.
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Introduction of Mimaru Hotels
Mimaru Hotels are famous for its apartment-style hotel rooms that offer comfort and luxury. Experience Japan like a local and stay at one of the many Mimaru Hotels in Kyoto, Osaka, or Tokyo.
The large spaces are perfect for bigger groups or families with kids. Most hotels offer connected rooms, meaning your travel buddies will be just a few steps away. At the same time, as a couple, we loved the spacious apartments. Especially considering that Japanese hotels are usually very compact and tiny.
They have strategically chosen the best locations in the city to offer the best sightseeing experience for its guests whether you are looking for a central location, a well-connected transport hotspot, or a local area for a relaxing experience.
Another highlight is the staff of Mimaru Hotels. A perfect blend of knowledge of locals and international staff to offer you the ultimate experience. Not only they can communicate in English (which is not so common in Japan), but they can also share their travel tips and help you plan your itinerary.
Depending on the hotel, you can find other important amenities like a washing machine inside your apartment, luggage storage & delivery, pet-friendly rooms,
We stayed at Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle so this review focuses on this particular property, though you can expect all of the same excellent service and amenities at the other properties of Mimaru Hotels as well.
Arriving at Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle
4-star hotel in Kyoto | incredible booking score of 9 | check rates and availability
The closest stations in Kyoto are Nijojo-mae Station, Omiya Station, and Shijo Station and it takes around 10 minutes walking to reach Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle. If you arrive at the Kyoto station, you can jump on bus number 50 or 9. Or you can always use a taxi considering that you are probably carrying your luggage.
If you are exploring Japan by car, the closes parking are Concept Horikawa Rokkaku, D Parking Shimohachimonji-cho #1, and Kurutto Park Horikawa Rokkaku Nishi located 2 minutes walk away from Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle.
On their website, you will find detailed tips and a route planner regardless if you are coming from Tokyo, Kansai Airport, or any other major destinations in Japan.
Conveniently located a few steps away from the castle and the Sanjo shopping arcade, Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle is a perfect place to sightseeing and see an authentic side of Kyoto.
Outside the hotel, you will also find several bus lines connecting to the main attractions in Kyoto, including the Golden Temple. You will find many authentic restaurants just around the corner and you won’t see many tourists around.
This is truly one of the best areas to stay in Kyoto if you are looking for a low-key local area perfectly connected with important attractions and top sights of Kyoto.
Even the first glimpse of the hotel will take your breath away! The main entrance with its neat Japanese style and attention to detail is simply fascinating.
The front desk is open between 7 am to 10 pm and check-in starts at 3 pm. Upon arrival, we were welcomed by a friendly and courteous staff who quickly checked us in and introduced us to the story behind Mimaru Hotels.
It is important that you will find English-speaking staff at the reception of Mimaru. Inside the lift, you can learn about their background and interests and they will gladly respond to any questions, fulfill your request or even share insider tips for Kyoto.
Early check-in is possible, but you will need to inquire before your arrival.
Rooms & Apartments
Room options at Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle include:
- Family Apartment
- Connecting Family Apartment
- Japanese Apartment
- Connecting Japanese Apartment
- Family Apartment with a Sofa Bed
We stayed at the Japanese Apartment which was a perfect home away from home and the highlight of our time in Kyoto. As the name suggests, it felt like we were visiting a local Japanese friend at his own family house.
Elegantly designed with a harmonious blend of modern and traditional Japanese elements, this 40 m² apartment features a stovetop, a fully equipped kitchen, Flat-screen TV, free Wi-Fi, air conditioning, and a dining area.
The dining area is tastefully furnished with comfortable seating and a traditional Japanese setting. This inviting space is perfect for relaxation or home-cooked meals.
It boasts 2 attached single beds and 3 futon beds. Considering that it was just two of us, we didn’t need to use the futon bed so they were fully packed away in the storage area.
Connecting Japanese Apartment and Connecting Family Apartment are 80 m² big and they are perfect for big families or large groups of friends. Family apartments offer single beds and bunk beds, while Japanese apartments have single beds and futon beds. The family Apartment with a Sofa Bed has single beds, bunk beds, and a sofa bed for the ultimate comfort.
Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle is one of the few hotels that offer pet-friendly rooms for your fur babies. There are rules that apply, however, one pet is already included in the price and it comes with some goodies for your friend.
All rooms at Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle are no smoking rooms.
Service & Facilities
The best part about having an apartment is the completely furnished kitchen and designated dining area. It offers things like an IH stove, cookware, tableware, cutlery, refrigerator, microwave oven, electronic kettle, dish soap, and sponge. The staff at reception were even kind enough to get us champagne glasses to celebrate our time in Kyoto.
Another highlight of Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle is the washer and dryer in your own apartment. This can be a real treat, especially if you are traveling for a long time. On your arrival, you will find one dose of detergent, but you can request an extra package at the reception if needed.
Last, but not least, you will have a spacious bathroom with a bathtub. It is the perfect way to relax after a busy day of exploring.
Other important facilities include free Wi-Fi, a hair dryer, a safety box, a TV, and an Air purifier. Japanese toilet deserves a special mention as well.
Other things to note
Every day the staff will replace the towels, empty the trash and refill the paper and liquid amenities in your room, however, they will change the bedsheets, make the beds and vacuum the floor on the fourth, seventh, and tenth days of your stay, counting from the day you checked in.
You can use the lifts to go up to the terrace and check out the stairway! The natural light that hits the area and its unique design makes it a perfect eye candy. The terrace is not serviced, but you can bring your own cup of coffee and start your day with the peaceful atmosphere of Kyoto.
At the reception, you will find a self-service corner with complimentary tea, slippers, and toiletries. There is also a Nespresso machine available for an extra price which was a real treat for my Italian partner who struggled to find a strong espresso in Japan.
A special pricing plan for long-term stays is available.
Other Mimaru hotels in Kyoto
Here is a list of other Mimaru hotels around Kyoto. While the other properties offer similar apartment style rooms, you might find other location more convenient for your trip.
This is the most ideal location to explore other cities like Nara and Osaka, but also Kyoto itself, since there is a bus station just outside the hotel.
MIMARU Kyoto Station provides some unique accommodations like a room with a city view and a Pokemon room.
Due to the location and rooms, this is probably the best choice for a long stay in Kyoto.
Conveniently located between the Nijo Castle and the Nishiki Market, this hotel lies in a very authentic yet comfortable area in Kyoto. This makes it perfect to have a relaxed stay in Kyoto, without giving up a strategic location.
Like the Mimaru station, MIMARU Kyoto Shinmachi Sanjo also boasts a unique Pokemon room. You can also find a connecting apartment of 80 m² that can accommodate up to 12 people.
MIMARU SUITES Kyoto Central is located between Kyoto Castle and Nishiki Market, with easy access to all the Kyoto heritage. This makes it perfect for visitors who have 3 days in Kyoto or less.
The Three-Bedroom Japanese Suite is a wonderful example of Japanese design and style and can accommodate up to 6 people.
MIMARU Kyoto Nishinotoin Takatsuj stands between the Nijo Castle and the Kyoto Station, in a lively area full of restaurants and bars. All the main attractions in the city are well connected to the hotel.
This makes it a great location to explore local traditional restaurants, without the crowd of most tourist places. Also, the MIMARU Kyoto Nishinotoin Takatsuj boasts a Pokemon room, that can accommodate up to 6 people.
MIMARU SUITES KYOTO SHIJO lies between the Nishiki Market and the Kyoto station, and it’s served by a subway line and several bus lines. That makes it perfect for sightseeing and exploring the Kansai region since the station is very close.
The apartments here are very spacious and can accommodate big groups of up to 6 people.
Further reading for where to stay in Kyoto
Travel tips for Kyoto:
- How to Rent a Kimono in Kyoto: Detailed Process with Prices
- Complete Kyoto Itinerary: How to Spend 3 Days in Kyoto
- 18 Best Free Things to Do in Kyoto + Kyoto Budget Tips
- 13 Best Ryokan in Kyoto with Private Onsen That Will Blow Your Mind
- 15 Best Places to Photograph Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto
Travel tips for Osaka:
- 15 Best Photo Spots in Osaka That You Can’t Miss
- 12 Best Ryokans in Osaka with a Private Onsen
- Osaka Itinerary: How to Spend 3 Days in Osaka
- 10 Best Food Tours in Osaka for Foodies
- How to Plan a Day Trip to Himeji: Travel Tips and Things to Know Before Visiting
Travel tips for Tokyo:
- 13 Best Tokyo Tours: Fun and Unique Experiences in Tokyo
- 13 Incredible Hotels With Tokyo Tower View In Tokyo
- 15 Epic Hotels with a Mount Fuji View in Japan
We were impressed with the size and quality of the apartments and felt well taken care of throughout our stay. To sum it up we had an incredible stay at Mimaru Kyoto Nijo Castle and I can truly recommend it to anyone visiting Kyoto. Hands down, it is one of the best places where to stay in Kyoto.
I would love to hear your thoughts, so if you have any feedback or additional tips, leave a comment below. Also, check out my Instagram for regular travel videos and travel inspiration. Or explore other destinations on this travel blog.