First Noku Roxy hotel opens in Kyoto

Property and hospitality group Roxy-Pacific Holdings officially opened the first hotel under its new upscale Noku Roxy brand.

The newly-refurbished, six-storey boutique hotel in Kyoto, Japan, is next to the Kyoto Imperial Palace and near key tourist spots such as the Shimogamo Shrine, Nishijin Textile District and Teramachi Street.

It has 81 rooms, ranging from 215 to 550 sq ft, with upper floors boasting views of the Kyoto Imperial Garden. Rates start from 20,000 yen (S$231).

Roxy-Pacific managing director Chris Teo noted in a statement that the hotel has been more than a year in the making.

"Kyoto was a clear choice due to its prominence - it was ranked as the world's top city for two consecutive years - and rich culture, being home to many Unesco World Heritage sites. Since the hotel's soft opening on Nov 1, we've received an encouraging flow of reservation requests, signalling healthy demand."

Noku Roxy's launch comes at a time when Japan is experiencing a tourism boom driven by a favourable exchange rate and various government initiatives, including easier processes for obtaining visas and lower sales taxes.

The latest flash estimates by the Japan National Tourism Organisation showed that Japan received 49.1 per cent more tourists from January to August this year over the same period last year.

Mr Teo said: "We are targeting a growing generation of travellers yearning for unique experiences and the ability to explore the city like a local."

The company aims to launch its second Noku Roxy hotel in Phuket, Thailand, in 2018.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 12, 2015, with the headline 'First Noku Roxy hotel opens in Kyoto'. Print Edition | Subscribe