Since ancient times, the Japanese people have been moved by the unparalleled beauty of nature and the four seasons, and this unique sense and appreciation of beauty has served to bring the Japanese together as a people and culture. The harmony between the natural environment, scenery and history is what brings joy to our guests, and it is our mission to ensure that our guests have a joyful stay.

This harmony and joy is key to the ideal hotel experience, which is duly expressed in our brand concept – something we call EMBRACING JAPAN’S BEAUTY. We want all of our valued guests to have special experiences with us, coming into contact firsthand with Japanese traditional culture, architecture, cuisine, arts and crafts – their own personal brush with Japan’s unique beauty and refinement.

Regarding the Hotel Name

In 1603, the Tokugawa Shogunate constructed Nijo-jo Castle in order to safeguard the Imperial Court located in Kyoto. Adjacent to Nijo-jo Castle was the location of the Kyoto home of the Kitake, the executive branch of the Mitsui Family - a home the family maintained for over 250 years.

The connection with the site began in the early 17th century with the decision taken by Takahira Mitsui, the second-generation head of the Kitake, the executive branch of the Mitsui Family, to build a residence next to Nijo-jo Castle. The property remained in the possession of the Kitake, the executive branch of the Mitsui Family until the period just after the Second World War. From the beginning of the 18th century until the early Meiji Period, the Oomotokata – the business steering committee for the Mitsui families – was organized and run from the Kyoto residence.

There are a number of relics that remain to this day, such as the main gate, some landscape features, stone lanterns, etc. The development has breathed new life into the heritage and legacy of the site. The Mitsui Fudosan Group is concentrating all of its efforts to build the ultimate luxury hotel brand in Japan, with HOTEL THE MITSUI KYOTO serving as the new flagship property.

This storied history and legacy – as well as the new challenge – is represented in the name of HOTEL THE MITSUI KYOTO.

Hotel Facilities

Kyoto is the historical and current locus of Japanese culture, arts and crafts.

This is where culture, aesthetics, refinement and the Mitsui family tradition come together. Our team of celebrated modern designers have worked to blend the old with the new, bringing together tradition and cutting-edge concepts to create a memorable place to stay in Kyoto.

An expression of the beauty of time-honored Japanese construction design and techniques

Originally constructed in 1703, the Kajiimiya Gate has stood watch over the Mitsui family property for over 300 years and now serves as a prologue to our arriving guests.

Beginning with the gate, the defining concept of the external design has been to express the elegance and class of Kyoto through modern techniques. Lead architect Akira KURYU has created a concept of layered Japanese beauty, a horizontal sense of time and space.

Feel the tradition and heritage of Kyoto; begin one’s own journey of discovery into the ancient capital

The Hong Kong designer André FU has overseen the development of the guest rooms and public spaces such as the lobby, etc. The concept of Heritage Re/Invented fuses the unique beauty of Japan and the old capital of Kyoto with new values, creating a design that will live long in the memories of guests from all over the world.

The entrance lobby features white wood walls, designed to invoke the image of Kyoto’s bamboo groves. The centerpiece of the lobby is ceramic artist Yukiya IZUMITA's ceramic creation, presented elegantly atop of a bed of small stones. Guest rooms with an average floor space of over 50 m² are a modern reimagining of a Japanese traditional tea room, created with carefully selected natural materials and fitted using traditional techniques. The bathing areas offer the experience of a traditional Japanese bath.

Balancing structures and garden spaces

The ancient capital has long-standing reputation for harmony between gardens and buildings. The Japanese have an expression for it: teioku ichinyo.

The central garden courtyard of the hotel measures some 1,300 m² and the mission of designer Shunsaku MIYAGI was to breathe new life into the legacy landscape relics from the Mitsui family. The shoin structure from the original Mitsui house has been restored and repurposed as a separate dining area for one of the restaurants, and hinoki cypress timbers are used to provide a warm welcome to guests in the entranceway and lobby. The harmonious blending of the lounge areas, interior garden spaces and water features is the embodiment of teioku ichinyo.

The landscaping imparts a sense of history with the careful placement of stone lanterns and decorative rock features, creating a natural vista that will reflect the seasons, through flowers and grasses, fragrancies, soft breezes, the sound of water and chirruping insects.


Opening November 3, 2020
Location 284 Nijoaburanokoji-cho, Aburano-koji St. Nijo-sagaru, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto 604-0051
Ground Area of Project Site 7,459 square meters
Access On the subway Tozai Line, alight at Nijojo-mae Station Exit 2 (3min walk)
On the subway Karasuma Line, alight at Karasuma Oike Station Exit 2 (10min walk)
No. of Guestrooms 161 rooms
Areas of Guestrooms by type 43-213 square meters
Food/Beverage Facilities TOKI (Gastronomy Teppan) – 44 seats
FORNI (Italian Cuisine) – 105 seats (including 18 terrace seats)
THE GARDEN BAR (Bar) – 44 seats (including 6 terrace seats)
Spa Thermal Spring (natural hot spring pool facility, swimwear required)
Private Onsen (2 rooms)
Treatment Room (2 rooms)
Gym, etc.
General Manager Manabu KUSUI
Operating Company Mitsui Fudosan Resort Management Co., Ltd.

Designers’ Profiles

  • Master Design Advisor Mr. Akira KURYU

    Born in Chiba Prefecture. After receiving his Master's degree at the Graduate School of Science and Engineering at Waseda University, Kuryu worked at Maki and Associates. Established A.KURYU ARCHITECT & ASSOCIATES Co., Ltd. in 1979.

    Pursues architectural designs with dignity that blend with the environment so they become part of the scenery as they are, along with designing buildings with a comprehensive atmosphere through collaborations with designers of various backgrounds.

    Principle works include Uemura Naomi Memorial Museum, Byodoin Temple (Hosho-kan), Nagasaki National Peace Memorial Hall for Atomic Bomb Victims, Ise Jingu (Sengukan), Nara National Museum (Nara Buddhist Sculpture Hall) and others. Served as architectural director for The 2005 World Exposition, Aichi, Japan and Pacific Flora 2004 at the Shizuoka International Garden and Horticulture Exhibition, as well as numerous other exhibitions.

  • Interior Design (Guestrooms and Lobby) Mr. André FU

    Born in Hong Kong. MA in Architecture from the University of Cambridge. Established AFSO in 2000.

    An ethos of modernity, contemporary comforts and relaxed luxury forms the basis of Fu's design philosophy - an aesthetic that transverses different cultures - a reflection of Fu's nomadic lifestyle.

    Fu's design for The Upper House (Hong Kong) instantly pushed him to the fore of globally-renowned designers, followed by his creations for Andaz Singapore and The Berkeley, London (The Pavilion Suites). His major works in Japan include Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo (Piacere, Nadaman and Horizon Club Lounge) and Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo at Marunouchi (MOTIF).

  • Landscape Design Mr. Shunsaku MIYAGI

    Born in Kyoto Prefecture. Received his Master's degree from the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University. After becoming Assistant Professor at the Graduate School of Horticulture at Chiba University, Specialization Professor at the Department of Residential Architecture and Environmental Science at Nara Women's University and Professor at the Open University of Japan, Miyagi has served as Professor at the Graduate School of the University of Tokyo since 2019. In 1992 Miyagi assumed the post of Partner at PLACEMEDIA, a design organization. He has been engaged in many landscape- and urban- design projects both at home in Japan and overseas.

    Principal works in recent years include landscape designs for Tokyo Garden Terrace Kioicho, GINZA SIX GARDEN, JP Tower/KITTE, Ise Jingu (Sengukan), and others. Miyagi has served as Representative Director for Byodoin Temple - a religious institution - since 2009.

  • Interior Design (SPA and restaurants) Mr. Yohei AKAO

    Born in Hiroshima Prefecture. A graduate at Scenography, Display and Fashion Design Department of Musashino Art University. 2011 Akao established STRICKLAND Inc. after working with the Space Environment Planning Institute Co., Ltd. followed by Super Potato Co., Ltd. Akao has a wealth of experience in interior design, specializing in hotel dining facilities.

    Principle works include The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi (Langkawi Kitchen, The Beach Grill, Hai Yan, Horizon), The Ritz-Carlton, Macau (Lai Heen), and Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto (Sushi Wakon).

    Akao's most recent major project was overseeing the interior design of the Hyatt Centric Ginza Tokyo.