I visited Kyoto, Japan last year to run the marathon there (see, Kyoto Marathon 2014)
We’ve all been to so many lovely hotels that it is difficult to say which one was the very best. But, I will say without hesitation that the Hyatt Regency Kyoto was in the top five! The room was gorgeous – airy and expansive, understated luxury. The breakfast was fabulous. But, what makes or breaks a hotel is often the staff. The manager, Ken Yokoyama, and all of the staff at the Hyatt Regency Kyoto were outstanding! Ken Yokoyama! In my life, I have never met a person who was so devoted to his guests, and taking care of every detail and going the extra mile – gracefully and without seeming doting or annoying. The entire staff had the same demeanor. He obviously trained them well: they seemed to know what you needed before you realized you needed it. This is the hotel to study for excellence in hospitality. This is a hotel to emulate!
Here’s just one example. On the day I checked out of the hotel, Mr. Yokoyama insisted that the hotel take care of my taxi to the JR Kyoto Station (I was taking a Shinkansen train to Tokyo). Since it is impossible to say no to this man, I graciously accepted and said thank you. When I arrived at the station, and was getting out of the taxi, I looked up and saw a young women who worked at the hotel. I was startled and asked her what she was doing there. She said that the manager had put her in a taxi after me so she could meet me and make sure I found my way to the right train.
The only thing missing at the Hyatt Regency Kyoto was a Regency Club. That, and better weather when I visited. Next time I visit, I want to be there for the cherry blossoms!