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Nick88's avatar

Have you stayed at a traditional Japanese inn?

Asked by Nick88 (61points) 1 month ago

For those of you who have been to Japan, have you stayed at a ryokan? If so, what was it like during your stay? What did you like about it and why? I’ve read and done some research on them and I heard some very good things about ryokans. Were the staff friendly and did they render any hospitality? Were there any ryokan in Japan where the staff spoke any English? If I stayed at a ryokan, what will I need, and do they have any showers there? I know some ryokans have an onsen or a hot spring bath, and I know some ryokan etiquette.

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2 Answers

Zissou's avatar

I stayed at one in the early 90s. I picked up the free robe that comes with the room and thought it was strangely short, too short for me to wear, so I went to the bath wearing pants that I took off when I got there, looking like an oafish gaijin, I’m sure. When I got back, I took another look at the robe and found that the robe was not short, it was just so stiff with laundry starch that it didn’t unfold all the way when I picked it up off the shelf.

Nevertheless, nobody said anything about it, and the staff demeanor was as polite and ceremonious as you would expect. They did not speak English, or spoke very little. I brought a phrasebook.

The dinner, brought to my room in some sort of little cabinet, was more than I could eat. Rice, seaweed, sushi/sashimi, a quail egg, and I don’t remember what else.

Just do your homework so that you know what will be expected of you and make reservations. Japan struck me as not the sort of place that catered to people who like to do things on the spur of the moment.

elbanditoroso's avatar

The one and only time I went to Japan was on business, and they put me in a western-style hotel, which was fine with me.

I was only in Tokyo, and I didn’t like it at all. Too garish, too much traffic, to overbuilt. I hae no interest in going back.

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