Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View, Hakone

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Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View, Hakone

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Review of "Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View, Hakone"

published 25/10/2016 | catsholiday
Member since : 03/03/2003
Reviews : 1910
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Thank you anyone who is kind enough to read then rate my reviews, especially those Es.
Good
Pro Fantastic views from the room, good food
Cons Pretty shabby room
exceptional
Value for Money
Quality of Rooms
Standard of Service
Quality of Food & Drink
Cleanliness

"Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View with a view of Mt Fuji"

Our boat for the Ashi lake trip

Our boat for the Ashi lake trip

Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View, Hakone

On our trip to Japan earlier this year we stayed in a number of different hotels all booked by the tour company so we had no choice. The tour company was Riviera Travel, a company we booked with on line but they are local to us. The tour was first rate and every hotel was high quality, all very different but all good in different ways.

WHERE IS HAKONE AND WHY STAY THERE?

Well it is a rather odd little town beside a lake not far from Tokyo. It is apparently a popular resort area for Japanese tourists. I am not sure if it is just the great views of Mt Fuji that brings them here or if it is scenery and the lake but I have to admit that you couldn’t ask for better location for views of Mt Fuji.

There are a number of places around Hakone offering views of Mt. Fuji, but this hotel by the lake must be one of the best. It also has quiet, and beautiful grounds as well as lovely views of the lake even when Mt Fuji has chosen to hide in the clouds.
The Hakone Hotel, or Fujiya Hotel Lake View Annex, is a member of the group that includes the Fujiya Hotel, which is apparently one of the most famous hotels in Hakone and has hosted countless celebrities such as John Lennon.

Our hotel was not that one but its sister hotel and more down to earth!

GETTING THERE

This was the oddest trip of all those in Japan. We knew we were going to the hotel on a boat and imagined we were going to an island but in fact the coach took our luggage and we all went on the boat because we would have nice lake views and the boat itself is an experience that is like no other.

There are two or three of these boats which are large and highly decorated in an almost ‘ theme park ride’ sort of way. Really garish and completely non Japanese and like nothing I had imagined the boats to Hakone would be.

One boat is called ‘Victory’ another ‘Vasa’ and the third is Royal II. We were on RII and we had around a 30 minute ride across Lake Ashi from Hakone Ropeway all down the lake to Kakone.

I believe the boats go every half hour or so and I believe the fare is around 350 Yen one way or general passengers and first class is extra. We only went one way and I think the tour included this ride for the novelty factor as it certainly was an experience.

Once we got over the hilarity of what the boats looked like we had to queue with the inevitable hundreds of Japanese tourists to get on board. Once on the boat there were few choices of deck and we were pretty much packed on like sardines so the idea of a relaxed boat trip on the lake was a bit dampened by the lack of being able to see the view as the chance of getting any where near the side of the boat was slim to none!

Once we docked at Kakone we walked round some less than gorgeous parts of the town towards where our coach was parked in order to collect our hand luggage and bits. The main bags were delivered to the room later.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Well in all honesty my first impression as we got off the coach at the back of the hotel was not that great.

From the back it is pretty ugly and looks a bit like a concrete prison block and we were not quite sure what we might find when in the hotel!

Heading inside didn’t make me feel any more confident as the area we were taken into was very small and near a large open stair case so as we all waited for our keys it was a bit squashed and we were all perched on different steps.

Heading to the room we used the back staircase and followed the hotel staff member which also didn’t make for a warm typical Japanese welcome but we went along with him along a corridor and into the room.

THE ROOM

Things began to look up as the room was a decent size with a huge full window floor to ceiling and wall to wall looking over the lake

The beds looked a bit tired and the carpet a bit well worn. In fact the whole room looked slightly shabby and not that inviting apart form the size and the huge window with the view.

There was a TV but that was not worth watching as neither of us speak Japanese and the novelty of watching soon wore off.

The pictures of the room on their website look nothing like they did in reality. All the furnishings were tired, dark and looked like they belonged in my grandma’s house!


The room did have air-conditioning, televisions with cable TV, telephone, wifi internet connection, a kettle, a Japanese tea set, refrigerator, and a hair dryer. There were also yukata bath robes and slippers for each of us – a touch small for my husband though!
The beds were not that great ad the pillows a little on the hard side but the bedding was clean and smelled fresh too.

THE BATHROOM

This was actually the best part of the room. It was clean and had a huge bath, one of the all singing all dancing Japanese toilets. They make tinkly trickling noises as you sit on them to encourage you and then automatically flush – sometimes when you least expect it! They also have heated seats!!

Like the other Japanese hotels we stayed in the freebie goodies were great and included shampoo, conditioner, soap , toothbrush sets, razors, shower caps, combs and folding hair brushes.

There were also nice towels and plenty of them.

AND ON TO THE JAPANESE EXPERIENCE

This hotel has a Japanese Onsen, a real Hot Springs bath from the volcanic Hakone Springs.. There is one for ladies and one for gents. As you have to enjoy this dubious experience in the nude I was not going anywhere near it. My husband, however was up for it and so off he went wearing his slippers and rather small yukata robe carrying his face cloth which is the only towel you take with you!!

The rules for Onsen are long and etiquette is all important.The rules taken from the hotel website:
“Before you take a hot bath, please check the following:
1. Please take off your underwear before you go into the bath area.
2. Please wash yourself well before getting into the bathtub.
(Please sit down for taking a shower, and do not waste water.)
3.Please keep your towel out of the bathtub.
4.Please do not run in the bath area, and do not swim in the bathtub.
5.Please refrain from taking videos, photos or washing your clothes or underwear.
6.Please dry yourself off before coming out of the dressing area.

ATTENTION:
Please do not take a hot bath just before or after the meal, or after drinking an above-average amount of alcohol.”

Now my husband was ‘lucky’ enough to have an elderly Japanese man already in the Onsen and he insisted on showing my husband exactly how to wash etc . He didn’t speak a word of English so you can just picture the scene!
The tiny face cloth towel you take with you as to sit on your head while you are in the hot spring/bath. You then use it to dry yourself off before putting on your Yukata and return to the room!

My husband’s description of his experience was hilarious and I was so pleased I passed on the experience.

I had my own Onsen experience in our room in the bath with some special Onsen bath salts I bought while there.

DID YOU SEE MT FUJI?

The hotel was supposed to be a great place to view Mt Fuji but on the day we checked in Mt Fuji was well hidden. The next morning the clouds were still there when we woke so we kind of gave up.

My husband went down to the gardens and while he was away Mt Fuji came into view crystal clear perfectly beyond the lake. I took several photos from the room then rushed out into the garden to enjoy the view down there with my husband who I met coming back to the room to tell me that Mt Fuji was in view just in case I hadn’t noticed.
So the hotel had given us a fabulous view and the shabbiness of the room was all forgiven.

EVENING MEAL

The hotel has three restaurants. A Teppanyaki one, A French one and a Lakeside bar with light snacks. There is also a bar.

Bar / Il Lago:
We enjoyed a few drinks in the bar and the drinks were similarly expensive as they were throughout Japan. It was pleasant and the staff helpful if a it flustered as our group gradually all gathered in the bar and ordered drinks and they tried to remember who had ordered what. It was a bit disorganised. It would have ben so simple to just go to the bar , sign the cost to the room and then sit down but their system was chaotic and it took us ages to sort out our individual bills.

French cuisine / Il Miraggio

Our group were fed at a set time in this restaurant and we had a waiter served meal but there was no choice.

We had soup to start with followed by a very nice stern style meal which made a nice change from the fare we had been ‘enjoying’ up till then. There was a tasty fishdish then a nice steak with vegetables followed by a crème brulle sort of dessert all of which was very nice and went down very nicely especially for me as I was kind of off Japanese food at that stage as I was recovering from food poisoning and somehow Japanese food just was not tempting!

We also had breakfast in this same restaurant but this was a buffet and offered a good selection of Western choices known as an Americn breakfast in Japan and this offered fruit, yogurt, break and sweet buns as well as cooked options so plenty of choice to keep most people happy.

PRICES

Hotels in japan are not cheap and this package with evening meal and breakfast costs 17,250 to 24,840 Yen.

The exchange rate means that the nearly 25,000 Yen is around £200 so I guess not too bad considering the evening meal and the view but the room is not really a room worth that!

RECOMMENDED?

Well for views of Mt Fuji you would have a job to get a better view from your room.

If you want to try an Onsen then that is included in the room price so would save you paying extra for that experience.

The food was pretty good and the hotel from the inside in the public areas was much better than the room. I think we had the basic rooms and there were more expensive one and there were also Japanese ones if you fancy trying that experience but sleeping on a futon is not something I wanted to experience and anyway we didn’t have a choice of rooms as the tour company booked them all.

Thanks for reading
©Catsholiday
25th October 2016

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Comments on this review

  • AnneLorraine1 published 01/11/2016
    Excellent
  • hiker published 29/10/2016
    Great review - I guess sometimes you pay for the promise of a view.
  • mikemelmak published 28/10/2016
    Great - IOU an E. Stunning vistas!
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Product Information : Hakone Fujiya Hotel Lake View, Hakone

Manufacturer's product description

Product Details

Type: Hotel

City: Hakone

Address: 65 Hakone, Hakone-machi, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa, 250-0521

Rating: 4 Stars

Rooms: 50

Country: Japan

Continent: Asia

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Listed on Ciao since: 19/04/2016