Originally built shortly after World War II, this traditional townhouse was completely restored and beautifully renovated by renowned Kyoto architect Yamamoto Yoshimitsu in 2019 and 2020.

The concept of blending the best of traditional design and craftsmanship with all the convenience of the high-tech modern Japanese home has guided each step of creating Villa Silktree. The house has been created by the owners (a European and Japanese couple) for their own use and thus no expense has been spared. The house is a premier machiya gem waiting to be explored, experienced and enjoyed by the demanding traveler.

The designers paired traditional materials and layout with high-quality handpicked furniture and design. Modern elements such as leather sofas in the living-room and Western beds in one bedroom provide maximum comfort. This concept allows the traditional machiya experience while offering a highly convenient stay, in short, a unique experience of omotenashi — classic Japanese hospitality — in Kyoto.

Offering two separate bedrooms on the second floor makes Villa Silktree ideal for groups of 4-6 people.


A beautiful traditional exterior greets the visitor to Villa Silktree. Entering through a traditional hallway, we reach an inviting spacious living and dining room with an attached open kitchen. The large dining table as well as the seating area offer comfortable seating for every visitor to the house. Two separate floor heating systems provide a warm and pleasant atmosphere in winter while a hidden air-conditioning system guarantees perfect temperatures during Kyoto’s hot summers.

All equipment, such as the washing machine, is hidden behind sliding doors so as not to spoil the refined Japanese design. The beautiful Japanese garden was created by Uetoh Zohen, a renowned Kyoto garden-design company established in 1823, responsible among others for the Japanese garden at the International Horticultural Exposition in Beijing in 2007.

Contemplating the beautifully illuminated garden at night from the leather sofas in the living room relaxes everybody after a long day of sightseeing. Arrange the sliding shoji to frame your favorite view of the garden or sit on the narrow veranda (engawa) and take in the atmosphere while listening to the birds outside.

Space & Functionality

Sitting on a larger lot than most machiya in Kyoto, Villa Silktree offers its guests more space than most traditional machiya. The second floor comes with two large and completely separate bedrooms as well as a second toilet and washroom in addition to the one on the ground floor. The ceiling of the living room has been heightened to offer more vertical space as well, and to allow lots of sunlight into the house.

Appreciated by many guests used to the smallness of Japanese hotels is the fact that each room comes with large closets which allow the unpacking of suitcases plus storing and hiding baggage behind sliding doors.

An induction cooker, a good-sized temperature-controlled Japanese bathtub and not to forget the high-tech Japanese toilets complete the introduction to the modern Japanese home. Well equipped with tableware and cooking utensils this is not just an overnight holiday accommodation but a house to be properly lived in and enjoyed.

Tradition & Modernity

Villa Silktree beautifully preserves traditional elements. You find them on the outside, be it the entrance curtain (noren), the traditional wooden windows facing the road or the traditional Japanese garden.

Likewise, the house surprises its guests on the inside with careful attention to traditional Japanese details, as exemplified by the built-in step chest (kaidan tansu) on the first floor or the alcove in the traditional tatami room with futons on the second floor.

But there is also a bedroom with one double and one single high-quality mattress, allowing those not keen to lay down on a futon to have a comfortable night’s sleep with high-quality bedding. USB outlets in this bedroom as well as in the first floor are a given. Villa Silktree also provides its guests with strong and stable wifi and a large TV with Netflix access as well as a high-end sound system that can be connected by bluetooth to any mobile device.


Villa Silktree is perfectly located in a narrow, very quiet alley adjacent to Kawaramachi Street. The neighborhood is pleasant, with small temples, small parks as well as nice cafes just around the corner. A well-stocked supermarket is just a five minutes’ walk away.

The small and romantic Takase River passes by within 100 meters and offers an extremely pleasant short walk right into the heart of Kyoto. Add another 100 meters and you reach the famous Kamogawa River, perfect for those looking for Kyoto’s best jogging course along the river to both the north and the south.

Famous attractions such as the Higashiyama district with Kiyomizu Temple and Gion can be reached within 30 minutes on foot or conveniently by bus or train. The nearest bus stop connecting to Kyoto Station as well as most tourist attractions is less than 100 meters away. Guests arriving by car find numerous reasonably priced parking areas within 200 meters.

Kyoto station is just twelve minutes on foot, the nearest subway station (Gojo) only eight. Also convenient is the short distance of eight minutes walking from Villa Silktree to another station, Kiyomizu-Gojo on Keihan railway. This allows to reach famous spots like the Silver Pavilion or the Philosopher’s Path in the north-eastern part of Kyoto as well as the Fujimi Inari Shrine in the south directly without changing trains. You can use Kiyomizu-Gojo station even for an inexpensive train ride to Osaka.


“We really enjoyed our stay. A lot of thought has gone into designing and equipping the house. With its modern and traditional features, the house is the perfect base to explore Kyoto. It is especially suited for families with teenage children, offering ample space for everyone to relax and a superfast internet connection. The proper kitchen allows preparing your own food, important for people with food restrictions.”

– Couple, 50s, Singapore

“The place is close to major tourists spots as well as Kyoto Station yet in quiet area. The facility not only has great functionality such as floor heating system and bathroom drier but keeps the beautiful appearance by blending washing machine and air conditioner seamlessly into the walls. Overall atmosphere is very modern, but it maintains all the good essence of a Japanese machiya.”

– Female, 30s, Tokyo

“Our two families felt immediately at home – like living among the affluent residents of Kyoto in a luxurious house while being close to all the sightseeing spots. Great that we could choose between sleeping in the traditional Japanese way (futons on tatami) or enjoying the comfort of a Western bed. I loved the underfloor heating system: Natural warmth without the AC causing that very dry air that is all too common in other Japanese houses or hotels.”

– Male, 40s, Tokyo

“Traveling to Japan for the first time, I was very fascinated by Villa Silktree. It stays very true to authenticity that I had expected from Japanese culture, while sacrificing some of it on some well-placed upgrades for convenience sake, making it just perfect. This extends to the surrounding as well, the streets cafes and bars all brimming with personality. The last big plus is how close transit is: Having a bus and train stations so close was really convenient.”

– Male, 20s, Berlin

“Great location in Kyoto – away from the bustling busier area but conveniently accessible to key sightseeing areas. You can enjoy being a tourist during the day while also experience being a local by coming “home” to a residential area. The facility is clean, beautiful modern Machiya design (experience traditional tatami rooms while having a bed option), fully equipped, and spacious – perfect for staying with family or a group of friends.”

– Female, 30s, Tokyo

“Staying at Villa Silktree makes you feel like a Kyoto resident. You are part of a nice and quiet neighborhood but also perfectly located to comfortably reach all the Kyoto sights and city life. The machiya style house offers generous space and the elegant atmosphere you would expect from classical Japanese interior and garden design. Technical equipment is absolutely up-to-date, nothing’s lacking. This special retreat made our Kyoto experience unique.”

– Couple, 50s, Hong Kong