The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto
Sitting pretty on the banks of the Kamogawa River, the Ritz-Carlton Kyoto
is a luxurious alternative to the traditional ryokans that dominate the area. Guestrooms are minimalist yet plush, with giant windows, in-mirror TVs, soaking tubs, the requisite high-tech Toto toilets, and locally made bath products. Wellness facilities range from a spacious spa to a 20-meter pool, while dining options include a Japanese restaurant serving kaiseki dinners, an Italian spot with a cheese-and-charcuterie cellar, and a Pierre Hermé patisserie. Although cocooned in a quiet setting, the hotel is conveniently located with walking distance of the downtown area, making it a favorite of affluent tourists.