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Hotel Wakamizu(Takarazuka)
US$ 477
US$ 255
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Reviews (201)
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Reviewed 20 May 2016

Located in Takarazuka City about 40 minutes by train from Osaka, the Takarazuka Hotel has had a long history, mainly serving the many thousands of fans who travel each day to the 2,500-seat Takarazuka Revue Theatre just a couple minutes' walk away. However, you need not be a theatre fan to enjoy what it has to offer.

Featuring a design inspired by Baroque architecture, and situated in a quiet city among Western Japan's Rokko mountains, the Takarazuka Hotel exudes a classical European feel that other hotels in Japan would find hard to match. However, at almost a century old, this hotel is showing its age.

I booked a twin room at the Takarazuka Hotel for 4 nights. After a very speedy check-in by a friendly lady who spoke English very well, I was assigned a room on the 4th floor, almost at the end of the corridor.

The room is rather dated, and has not changed since the last time I stayed there in 2010. But everything spotless and well-maintained, with no cracks or damage to the furniture, even though the decor looked like it probably had not changed since the 1990s. My room also had a non-view - looking out to a ratty rooftop and across to the condominium nearby.

However, there are some plus points. If you like peace and quiet, you will enjoy the laid back vibe of suburban Japan that defines this hotel. People who find hotel rooms in Japan claustrophobic would likely appreciate the generous space - rarely would a twin room in a city hotel have extra space for a coffee table and two chairs! The staff at this hotel, mainly older folk who live in the city or nearby, also offer impeccable service and are the perfect examples of how friendly people in western Japan are.

In-room services which I have used are also much cheaper at the Takarazuka Hotel compared to elsewhere in Japan. The room's mini-bar is well-stocked and drinks consumed are always replaced. The laundry service is prompt as well.

The hotel's casual restaurant, Solares, has some pretty good food at very reasonable prices (about 2000 yen per diner). One of my favourite dishes and a chef recommendation is the Japanese-style beef stew, which is served with either short-grain white rice or bread. If you're feeling a little more adventurous, there is a pretty popular ramen restaurant about 6 minutes' walk from the hotel's back entrance (A-Ramen, about 1,000 yen per diner), and a 7-Eleven convenience store offering cheap eats and travel necessities is just across the road.

If you are travelling from Osaka, be sure to factor in a rather long commute - even the rapid service trains (those that skip certain stops to save time) will take about 40 minutes between Osaka and Takarazuka station.

While most visitors to Takarazuka either come for the theatre or the Osamu Tezuka museum that are the city's mainstay attractions, Takarazuka Hotel can also offer those who are non-fans a very different type of vacation in Japan - one that is far away from the hustle and bustle of the city, but yet immerses you in a relaxing suburban space.

Would-be visitors should also head over soon, as there is news that Hankyu, the corporation that owns both the theater and the hotel, is planning to close the current Takarazuka Hotel for good and build a more modern building nearby.

  • Stayed: February 2016, travelled solo
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Thank josada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 June 2015 via mobile

This must have been THE place to be at one time and the vast spaces and grand designs probably make it a great wedding or banquet venue. But it looks dated otherwise and somewhere aimed at older people. Rooms are comfortable and mine was big and wifi works well and staff very helpful

Stayed: June 2015, travelled on business
Thank Glyn W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2014

Stayed here for several nights. Reception area good and spacious. Rooms a little small and dated décor, reminded me a bit of Grandmas bedroom! Staff very helpful and polite, some English spoken but not too much! Coffee shop café Ok but food nothing special, you are better going outside to eat. Breakfast Ok but some strange things for a westerner so struggled to find much to eat.

Room Tip: Ask for one that looks into the inner courtyard with the fountain then you will get a peaceful nights sleep. Ones looking onto road can be noisy!
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled on business
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1  Thank VES11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2014

I stayed here for two nights on business in a double room. Quite spacious by Japanese standards, it is definitely not in the 'business hotel' (i.e. tiny room) category. The room was comfortable and quiet. The hotel itself is large and in demand for functions. The hotel cafe is the standard Japanese cafe, with tasty light meals and cakes. The breakfast buffet (in another room) was large, with mostly Japanese food, though they have bacon, eggs and toast. The hotel has a large shop selling souvenirs and gift boxes of local delicacies.
Staff were very polite and helpful when I needed to print out documents and send luggage by courier to Tokyo (standard practice in Japan to avoid lugging large bags around on the trains).
The hotel is conveniently located right across the road from Takarasuka-minamiguchi station on the Hankyu line, and there is a supermarket nearby (in the station shopping complex).
My only complaint was that like other Japanese hotels, it only had wired LAN internet access, not wifi, so I was unable to make use of the free internet with my smart phone. If you have a laptop or a mini-router that can plug into a LAN socket you'll be okay.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled on business
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Thank Neve97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 July 2012

This was a nice hotel, but few of the staff spoke English. The breakfast buffet was just ok.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled on business
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Thank MarciaK1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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