Fathom Favorites : Kyoto Hotels

1. Hotel Anteroom Kyoto

Hotel rooms and apartments just south of Kyoto station are stylish and comfortable — like staying at that (rich) artist friend's home. The lobby hosts an art gallery with rotating exhibitions. Rooms are cozy and well-stocked with contemporary amenities.

7 Aketa-cho Higashi-Kujo
Kyoto, Minami-ku 601-8044

2. Hoshinoya

Hinoki (Japanese cedar) is prevalent in the merchant villa-turned-ryokan perched on a cliff over Hozugawa River and five-minutes from the popular Arashiyama Bamboo Forest. Guests take cedar boats to the hotel, pad around on heated wooden floors, and luxuriate in deep soaking tubs in the expansive rooms. Sit down for a fifteen-course haute-cuisine kaiseki meal at the teahouse restaurant headed executive chef Ichiro Kubota.

Read more on Fathom: Old-World Japan: What's Quintessential in Kyoto

11-2, Genrokuzan-cho
Kyoto, Nishikyo-ku 616-0007

3. The Ritz-Carlton Kyoto

A grand hotel that embraces the age-old Japanese traditions of refinement and elegance. The discreet 134-room retreat sits on the banks of Kamogawa River — opt for a garden terrace suite for floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the river and a private Zen garden. Look for traditional and contemporary Japanese design accents, like calligraphy artwork and bathroom tiles inspired by sakuras. As if that's not enough, a top-notch concierge will help score the most impossible of reservations.

Read more on Fathom: An Elegant Retreat in Japan's Imperial City

Kamogawa Nijo-Ohashi Hotori
Kyoto, Nakagyo-ku 604-0902