The SpaceOur home is usually only open to rent to one or two adults, and you will be sharing the house with us. There are rare times when we are away and the house can be rented by up to four people. If you have a group of three or four, please let us know the dates and we will let you know if the house is available for a group. The cost to occupy the entire house is higher than the rate indicated in our listing, and we will let you know that cost when you inquire.
Our home is a 15-20 min. walk from Daitokuji temple, and a 5-10 minute bus ride to Kinkakuji (Golden Temple) and Ryouanji (Temple of the Dragon at Peace), the latter temple is famous for its karesansui ("dry water"), zen sand landscape style garden.
Close by (5-10 min. walk) is a popular café, a Japanese coffee shop and bakery for breakfast, and Funaoka Onsen, the most famous public bath house in Kyoto and registered as a type of cultural heritage site.
Our home has a large kitchen. It is fully equipped with a variety of cooking implements, plates, utensils, mugs, glasses, etc.
We have a lovely Japanese style bathing area, which includes both a furo (bath tub) and shower.
The house has two stories, with the master bedroom on the top floor. If you are sharing the house with us, we will be occupying this room. It has a large window facing east from which you can look out across the street into our neighbor`s lovely garden. The floor of this room is half tatami, half hard wood.
There is a good-sized common space on the first floor for eating and lounging, with many books for your perusal on a variety of subjects (we are both avid readers).
We also have a meditation/yoga space.
When we are still occupying the house, this room is where travelers can sleep while we are still here. If we are not here, this room can double as a second "bedroom" for two. It has a wood floor, and two large glass sliding doors facing the south. On sunny days this room receives generous amounts of sunlight. This room is 7.22 meters square (6 tatami mats) in size. It is big enough for two to comfortably sleep in and/or for yoga practice together. With two futons laid down, there is still a bit of space for a small coffee table we provide, as well as a couple of cushions to sit on. There are mats and props for your use upon request. There is no other furniture in this room.
There is a backyard space, which is where the clothes washer is located. In Japan, for drying clothes, most people hang clothes outside. There is a small concrete patio with a good-sized simple pole construction to hang your clothes on. Lots of hangars and clips for your use. Guest AccessWhether you are sharing the house with us or here on your own, you will have access to wi-fi, plenty of books, a stereo system with cds and the capacity to plug in to any mobile music device, meditation/yoga room, washer and drying area for clothes.
The kitchen has a gas range with two good-sized burners, a microwave, a toaster oven, a large refrigerator, an oven and a blender. There is also an extensive variety of cookbooks in English (and a few in Japanese and Italian).
For your bathing convenience, we provide bath towels (which may also be taken to Funaoka Onsen), shampoo, conditioner, hair dryer, body soap, and candles for your meditative or romantic use. : )
NOTE: If you are occupying the whole house, the master bedroom is on the second floor. The stairway is slightly narrower and the incline is a bit steeper than a Western stairway. If a person has difficulty climbing stairs, this may pose a challenge to them. That person would probably be better off sleeping in the yoga/meditation space on the first floor. Interaction with GuestsMore than likely we will be here during your stay. Both of us are out of the house often though. We own a yoga studio and cultural center in Okazaki called studio BiNDU ((URL HIDDEN) where Mark spends much of his time. Eri is an Interior Space Communication Designer. When not at the studio she is out consulting with clients.
If we are away during your stay, we have a bilingual friend who will serve as your immediate contact during your stay at our home. In addition, you will be able to contact us directly via email anytime.
We will leave you a map of the immediate area, marked with the location of several supermarkets, cafés/restaurants, a boulangerie, bakeries, a kissaten (Japanese coffee shop), as well as the Funaoka Onsen (large public bath house) and Daitokuji temple. We will give you a short list of our favorite restaurant recommendations in the downtown area as well. The NeighborhoodOur neighborhood is pretty quiet. Our home is nestled a little bit back away from the main street (Kuromaguchi) that runs east to west from the subway station all the way to the west side of the city. Within a 8-10 minute walk are several bus lines, as well as many eateries, a few convenience stores, and even a drug store and several traditional Japanese shops. Getting AroundFrom our home, it is an easy 8-10 minute walk to two major bus routes, one on Senbon street and the other on Kitaoji. From Senbon, you can catch a direct bus to Heian Jinguu, a large shrine in the Okazaki area, close to the Kyoto National museum (and our yoga studio!). The shrine is one of my favorites because it has a beautiful spacious four-part garden (¥600 to enter) with some lovely walking paths and two ponds. From Senbon there is also a direct bus to the downtown shopping area and the famous Nishiki market. From Kitaoji, there is a direct bus to Nijo Castle. From our home, you could also take a 20 minute walk to Kitano Tenmangu shrine, which is especially lovely during ume (plum blossom) season at the end of February.
Kyoto is also a bicycle city. We can direct you to a place that rents bicycles for ¥750 per day (our bikes are not available for use). By bicycle, from our home it is an 8 minute ride to the Kuramaguchi subway station, which gives you access to the entire downtown area of Kyoto within 5-10 minutes.
Also, by bike you can reach the Kamogawa river in 10 minutes, and bike along the river to downtown, or stop and have a snack or lunch at one of the many benches along the way.