Westin Miyako Kyoto

Discussion in 'Starwood | Preferred Guest' started by Chad, Mar 3, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Chad
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    Chad Silver Member

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    Towards the end of February I had a three-night stay at this somewhat lackluster hotel.

    Booked: Junior Suite
    Assigned: Junior Suite

    Apparently platinum members don’t book junior suites because when I politely enquired at check in about any possible upgrades I was informed I had already been upgraded. Later talking to a different staff member about getting a room on a higher floor I was also told that this would not be possible as I had been upgraded.

    Although I tried to like this hotel – I really couldn’t – the main reason was the room.

    I found the room, although a good size, best described as depressing. It seemed to be furnished like the apartment of a 53 year old who just lost everything in the divorce and moved into a “bachelors” apartment building.

    Although it had two reasonable sized TVs everything about the room, including the build quality, screamed low budget.

    On the positive, housekeeping was excellent and the room was very well cleaned and all toiletries were kept replenished. The bathroom also contained a hi-tech toto toilet.

    [​IMG]

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    (Living Room – don’t worry you can see the kids every second Sunday)

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    (Bed – Comfy but more of an Asian style heavenly bed – firmer mattress)

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    (Shower room )

    [​IMG]

    (View – nice, although the markings on the window added to the depressive vibe).

    Staying with the negative, despite it being included in the room rate, the hotel was eager to inform me that I could have free breakfast at the lounge or at the buffet downstairs.

    The first morning I tried the buffet. In terms of variety it appeared to be ok – however I had arrived fairly late and most of the items had not been replenished. The staff was friendly and polite, but could not handle the number of patrons. In fact the number of patrons really gave the whole place a cafeteria feel.

    Also note - breakfast coupons are provided and you are suppose to sign them before handing them over – I forgot to do this and caused somewhat of a commotion.

    For Platinum members or guests on the executive levels – you can also have breakfast at the executive lounge. The lounge itself is not really up to the standard of other Asian Starwood hotels – but the staff is friendly. Breakfast in the lounge is strictly a limited continental (although one morning they did have scrambled eggs). Unless you desperately want a full cooked breakfast – I found breakfast in the lounge to be a much more relaxing and pleasant experience.

    During the day a jug of water and a few cookies are available in the lounge. Evening cocktails are also served – self serve drinks and a plate of canapés is delivered to your table. The lounge also has another separate “library” level. Below the main lounge is also a large open air patio. This would be a very pleasant place to sit during the evening in the warmer months.

    The hotel also has a complementary shuttle to Kyoto Station and a few places en route. I arrived after the shuttle had finished and the Cab cost around 1500 yen from the station to the hotel (with no traffic). You may have a few minor language difficulties if you refer to the hotel as the Westin – but if you mention Miyako – cab drivers will know exactly where you mean.

    Just to note the shuttle bus sticks to the schedule – and will close the door at the allocated departure time – even if passengers are heading towards the bus – this is either a positive or negative (depending if you are sitting on the bus or running towards the bus).

    Also just to mention the location. There is little resembling nightlife in the vicinity so you’ll need a cab or stay elsewhere for that. However for daytime tourist activities the location was very good. Kyoto is spread out, so no location is going to be the perfect place to stay, but the Westin has some key sights within walking distance. The underrated Kyoto subway is also just next door. Furthermore I find the city center of Kyoto to be just another concrete Japanese city – the location around the Westin had a nice neighborhood charm.

    In conclusion the Westin can often be had at a relatively inexpensive rate – however for the price I paid I was not overly impressed with the hotel and would not stay there again. The hotel certainly had some positives, but I could not overcome the cheap and nasty feel of the junior suite. The hotel also has a whole range of different rooms – so my thoughts are really only contained to the junior suite.
     
  2. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Ouch. For a property that's charging over 40,000Y the week I'm staying there (for just a night thank goodness) it looks like a Day's Inn! Using my free Resort night since I don't plan to be anywhere else on the planet where a participating resort is located, so figured this was the best way to use it and save a few Yen on this trip. Location is different from my last stay in Kyoto a year ago (ANA across from the Castle) so it will at least position me to explore a new part of the city...then head back to Osaka for the balance of my stay.
     
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  3. theskyflyer
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    theskyflyer Silver Member

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    CHAD, thank you so much for posting this. I'll stick with Hyatt Regency next time. Even their smaller rooms look much better than this suite.
     
  4. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    After I posted this, I did some more research and found much more appealing looking rooms at this Westin in other trip reports. Not sure what to make, but I shall post my impressions in November!
     
  5. Chad
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    Chad Silver Member

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    All comes down to one's own subjective view - but I found the Hyatt to be a much nicer hotel all round.
    Well as I said my review was really just on the junior suite. The executive rooms, while smaller, don't appear to be furnished on quite so cheap a budget and look more pleasant. They also have some "single" tour group style rooms that should be avoided at all costs.

    For me it comes down to a value proposition - you can get a very competitive price on rooms here and I would view it as good value in the $200 range. During my stay the junior suite rate was significantly higher - and I judged it accordingly.

    The hotel is very busy and popular - so I don't think they'll miss my business - and I'm sure you'll enjoy your stay - the area around the hotel has some beautiful sights within walking distance.
     
  6. sendaiben
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    sendaiben Gold Member

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    Another viewpoint on this hotel: I had a one-night stay on business at this property in March 2013. A colleague was travelling with me, so I had a chance to see a standard room as well as the room I was upgraded to (executive king). Was very disappointed to see the hotel selling suites later on, although less so after seeing photos above. The executive king was pleasant and compact (fine for a one-night solo stay).

    The hotel was fine, not too far from the station by taxi and with a subway station nearby.

    The good:
    Clean property
    Platinum recognition (minor upgrade, lounge access, breakfast, plat amenity)
    Reasonable rates
    Complimentary water in room
    Very quiet
    Attractive property
    Shuttle bus from Kyoto station

    The bad
    Failed to upgrade to 'best available room' on checkin (this seems to be a growing problem with SPG hotels recently)
    Front desk not particularly welcoming
    Lack of electric sockets in room -only one by the desk!
    Lounge quite small and pokey
    Shuttle bus is very hard to find at the station and limited times

    Overall
    This is a fine property that could be better if they followed the rules for room upgrades. I would consider staying here again if I visit Kyoto.
     

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