Spend Valentine’s in a Love Hotel!

Japan is full of surprises… 

…especially if you stay at a love hotel!

Japan Love Hotels

Recently we went on an adventure to “old Japan.” We spent time in Osaka, Nara, and Kyoto. Being prepared, we decided to make our hotel reservations prior to the trip. In Osaka we reserved two “rooms” in a capsule hotel (but we’ll talk about that another time) and in Kyoto we used a well-known hotel reservation site to find and book a hotel that was affordable.

The hotel we decided on was called “Hotel Cinderella” it looked beautiful and was actually in our price range (turns out Kyoto is expensive!). We also liked that the hotel was a “no children” hotel, this isn’t uncommon in Japan, but it is still a plus on occasion.


We arrived in Kyoto around 5pm; we had taken the train from Kobe that day. We decided it would be a good idea to try to check in before we did any exploring so we wouldn’t have to lug our luggage around. We found the hotel and it was so Japanese! There were etchings of Cinderella in the glass of the doors and little soldiers guarding the grounds. We walked through the door and the first thing that greeted us was a table full of beautiful bath salts. I look to the left and see the elevator and the shrouded reception desk and the room “menu”. To the right were three private lobbies….then it hit me.

Japan Love Hotels

I tugged on my husband and whispered, “I think we are in a love-hotel,” and we both starting giggling incessantly. But, this was where our reservation was, so we were in it to win it! We tried to talk to the front reception, but they were busy on the phone, so they sent us to lobby room 1. The waiting room consisted of a TV, a bench, and a phone. Soon our private phone rang and we were summoned to the desk again. They politely explained that we couldn’t check in until 8pm (yup, love-hotel), but at least we were allowed to leave our bags.

Japan Love Hotels

We went out to explore Kyoto and have sushi for dinner. The cherry blossoms were beautiful. Then around 8, we returned to Hotel Cinderella. That’s when the fun really began! They gave us the “key” to our room and sent us on our way. The key was not a key, and actually had nothing to do with getting in and out of the room. It was just a plastic block that had the room number on it; our door was propped open for us to enter when we got there and locked when the door closed. Guess we are staying in for the rest of the night.

Japan Love Hotels

It turns out that we had booked one of the more high class rooms the hotel offered and so it was chock full of amenities. The room was decorated like it was from Cinderella’s castle. There were chandeliers and beautiful mirrors. The Jacuzzi bath was also a nice touch. And then there were the love-hotel specials: vending machines (instead of a mini-fridge) one full of drinks and snacks, the other full of…love supplies. A PlayStation 2, a karaoke machine, and a pachinko machine were all present. Next to the bed were a fancy lamp and a personal massager. The coffee table presented a few different menus, including one for costumes and one for sexy mood lighting. The mood lighting included dim, dimmer, and disco!

Japan Love Hotels

Japan Love Hotels

Honestly, it was one of the best surprises we’ve ever had. True, we should have been able to guess it was a love-hotel from the ad on the website, but it was a very commonly used hotel site, and I didn’t know you could reserve love-hotels on the internet! We stayed up for a bit taking pictures and giggling about the whole situation (you’ll have to excuse some of the pictures; I was laughing so hard I couldn’t keep the camera from shaking). Then I took a bath with some of the bath salts from the lobby and we passed out. I’ll admit the king-sized bed was not too comfortable, but I suppose it’s number one use isn’t normally sleeping.

Japan Love Hotels

The fun didn’t stop there though! Come eight o’clock the next morning there was a buzz at our door. Next to the room’s entrance there was a privacy cubby that opened out to the hallway on side and perpendicular to the door on the inside, so that you can’t see in or out if both doors are open. They had delivered our breakfast. Breakfast was a healthy egg sandwich, some fried chicken, and sausages. We ate breakfast with our chopsticks and were out of the room before nine. All-in-all, a wonderful surprise!

Japan Love Hotels

Have you ever had a travel surprise? Are you ready to hit a Japanese love hotel for Valentine’s Day?


20 thoughts on “Spend Valentine’s in a Love Hotel!”

  1. Hahah this is amazing! I didn’t even know these existed?! I think they should open some here in NYC, it would surely be a hit with those of us with an ironic sense of humor;-) Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

  2. Happy Valentine’s Day! Please don’t reply to this comment till you completely enjoy your time there. What a place to be in such an occasion! Good for you. The light fine tuning is a hilarious one! Wow!

  3. OMG this is wild and what a LOVELY (heehee) adventure for a night, Corinne! I like kids but not when I’m on vacation or trying to enjoy my peace and serenity time. So, that is awesome that a lot of the hotels in Japan are “no kids”. One question, you could get out of your room during the night if you had to right? This was so much fun to read :)

      1. Sorry, I never saw anything about it being a guest post until I came back just now. I see she is the author…you caught me off guard! Great post by Devon! :)

    1. Mike – yeah, I think they would have let us leave. We would just have to turn in our plastic block and pick it up again when we got back so they could unlock our door. LOL But we were happy to stay in that night. I took a bath and passed out. We had been walking a lot and needed a night off!

      Happy Valentine’s Day!

      1. I’m glad you two had such a spectacular time! Sorry I didn’t catch it was your guest post the first time, Devon. Happy belated V-Day to you and your husband and have a great day! :)

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