10 Sensational Hotels to Explore the Ancient Capital of Kamakura
Once the ancient capital of Japan, Kamakura is packed with attractions, from shrines and temples to historical hotspots, and even scenic ocean vistas. While many visit Kamakura as a day trip from Tokyo, the area offers more than enough to warrant an overnight stay, allowing visitors to fully uncover its wonders at their own pace. In this article, we’ll showcase 10 renowned Kamakura hotels perfectly located as a base for travelers!
Mar 24 2023
Kamakura: Full of Historic, Natural, and Cultural Charm
Kamakura was the political center of Japan during the Kamakura Period (1185-1333), and its historical townscapes remain imbued with samurai culture. It’s home to countless Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples, including the Gozan temples of Kencho-ji, Engaku-ji, Jufuku-ji, Jochi-ji, and Jomyo-ji, and boasts breathtaking lookouts over the sea and mountains. Kamakura is also very spread out, so finding accommodation with convenient access to sights and transport is essential to make the most of this fascinating slice of Japan.
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10 Hotels to Explore Kamakura
1. Breath Hotel
The seaside Breath Hotel is a 15-minute walk from Kugenuma-Kaigan Station on the Odakyu Enoshima Line, and just 5-minutes on foot to the beach.
The scenic coastal views will instantly calm you, framed through large windows fitted in all guestrooms. These sophisticated rooms are also fully equipped with state-of-the-art massage chairs, humidifiers, and large TVs for a resort-like environment.
Beds have urethane and pocket coil mattresses developed in-house by the hotel. Together with dust-free pillows made with “endless fibers” and original dust-free duvets, guests can recharge with the highest quality of sleep amongst pristine air.
Breath Hotel has a wealth of add-on services, taking advantage of its location to provide dinners made of local organic ingredients, in-room spa treatments, surfing lessons, and more.
You’ll need reservations while in Japan. See our writers’ top picks!
2. Kamakura Seizan
Tucked away in a refined, peaceful street, Kamakura Seizan is just 3 minutes on foot from Kamakura Station, making it ideal for those with a packed itinerary. Its name is derived from the Zen term “seizan ryokusui” (blue mountains, green water), which celebrates the natural, unadorned form. Blending in seamlessly with nature, this unique concept of beauty is seen all throughout the hotel.
Guestrooms are modern-Japanese decorated with understated touches of traditional design with a focus on texture, offering a gratifying space to sleep and unwind.
A lovely Japanese breakfast is also available, made up of six small dishes with white rice cooked in a traditional steamer and served in a restaurant bristling with greenery.
For a bit of excitement, the area around Kamakura Station is full of trendy restaurants and cafes, making it a great place to stroll and take in the local atmosphere.
3. Hotel Metropolitan Kamakura
Just a 2-minute walk from Kamakura Station, Hotel Metropolitan Kamakura’s convenience is second-to-none. Designed upon the concept of “Experience a New Kamakura,” it brings the characteristics of classic Japanese design into the present. This is seen from the moment you enter the lobby, which flaunts a stylish traditional “engawa” corridor with wooden floors running along the outside.
The fixtures and fittings, like tables and doors, are made of natural materials that exude a gentle warmth. The hotel faces Wakamiya Oji, Kamakura’s main street, and many rooms are positioned in front of the traditional city sights, showcasing icons like the Nino Torii gate of Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu.
Guestrooms are simple and sleek and burst with sunlight flowing in from the large windows. They are clean and comfortable spaces, perfect to recover from the stress of traveling.
There is also a MUJI store on the ground floor, the first in Kamakura, with a Café & Meal MUJI and MUJIcom popular among locals.
4. THE HARBOR TERRACE
THE HARBOR TERRACE faces the laid back Zaimokuza Beach, a 10-minute drive from Kamakura Station. It’s easy to reach from Tokyo by car, and there is private parking on site (for a fee). The building is distinguished by its gorgeous white and blue design resembling the tones of Santorini in the Aegean Sea. It also has a restaurant serving creative French cuisine made with local vegetables and freshly caught seafood.
There are 8 guestrooms ranging from airy Western-style resort rooms to a Japanese style befitting luxury ryokan inns. Each naturally presents a picture-perfect coastline panorama.
The Japanese-style corner room boasts lovely views of pine trees and ocean beyond the terrace. It also contains a bath made of “hinoki” cypress and natural stone, where guests can take in the views while soaking and enjoying the wooden aromas.
On the rooftop is an infinity pool and sauna with a fantastic lookout over Kamakura and the ocean, with the pool appearing to merge seamlessly with the sky. You can also spot Mt. Fuji and Enoshima Island, and there are plenty of lounge chairs and sofas to doze off in or escape into a book.
5. Scapes The Suite
Scapes The Suite is located in Hayama, a chic, sophisticated resort town on the Morito Coast about 30 minutes from Kamakura by bus and train. The hotel presents a wide range of services, encouraging guests to act as if it was their own holiday home.
With just four guestrooms, all ocean-view suites, Scapes The Suite is an exclusive affair. Each room is themed on a color from Hayama’s rich nature: saxe blue, mandarin orange, evergreen, and maple rose. These artistic color schemes are stimulating and exotic, harmonizing beautifully with the surroundings.
Scapes The Suite promotes the idea of “active rest,” which is the notion of rejuvenation through movement, and offers a variety of experiences to stimulate the five senses. There are yoga mats, mountain bikes, running shoes, and dumbbells available to use for free.
There is also a library and Bang & Olufsen audio equipment for those wanting a more peaceful “active rest.”
6. BIRD HOTEL
BIRD HOTEL is just 3 minutes on foot from Yuigahama Station. Yuigahama has long been a haven for Japanese artists, and is full of health resorts and luxury weekend homes. The hotel flaunts a verdant garden arranged to have flowers blooming throughout the year, giving guests pleasing scenery the moment they step onto the premises.
The hotel has just five guestrooms, ensuring each guest is attended to with the utmost care. Interiors are designed as integrated wholes, with wooden tones and high ceilings reminiscent of log cabins giving it the calm, relaxed feel of a holiday home.
Originally founded as a restaurant, BIRD HOTEL operates as an “auberge,” the French term for an inn providing food and lodging for travelers. The onsite restaurant serves Italian-style dishes bringing out the best of the ingredients, including seasonal vegetables chargrilled to enhance their umami, as well as plenty of meat and fish.
It also has a spacious terrace, a dining area and lounge connected to a courtyard, and a bar counter with courtyard views - all wonderful places to eat and drink while relishing the changing seasons!
7. GEN HOTEL KAMAKURA
GEN HOTEL KAMAKURA is an 8-minute walk from Kamakura Station. Its name comes from the samurai family that once ruled Japan from Kamakura, along with its location on the land where Hojo Tokifusa, the brother-in-law of shogun Minamoto no Yoritomo, once resided. There are even recreations of the well and torii gate that stood on the grounds from the late Edo Period until relatively recently, and plenty more to tantalize history buffs.
The white-toned guestrooms combine both Japanese and Western elements to produce the ultimate sense of serenity. They come in a variety of styles, from large family rooms to compact ones for solo travelers.
GEN HOTEL is also an excellent base for sightseeing, with Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu, a historic shrine, just 2 minutes away on foot, and the prestigious Kencho-ji Temple also nearby. There are likewise dozens of restaurants and cafes around the neighborhood to check out. Plus, you can enjoy a rickshaw ride from Ebisuya Kamakura, a joint business with the hotel.
Head up to the rooftop terrace for sweeping Kamakura views incorporating the surrounding mountains, then finish up the day with a refreshing drink.
8. Tosei Hotel Cocone Kamakura
Tosei Hotel Cocone, a roughly 4-minute walk from Kamakura Station, sits on a back street of Wakamiya Oji leading to Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu, and is a great location to use as a Kamakura sightseeing base. It also has a shared bicycle station to make your tour of Kamakura even more efficient.
The interior is designed in “wa-modern” style, a contemporary take on traditional Japanese aesthetics. Guestroom types accommodate a wide variety of travelers, from singles to couples plus groups and families.
The reception area is decorated with traditional “kumiko” latticework, filling the room with the warmth of wood, and enhanced by stylish lighting to form a comfortable, welcoming space.
The hotel also serves wonderful breakfasts, with a choice between a Japanese grilled fish set or Western breakfast with eggs and bread. There is also a drinks counter on the 1st floor with free coffee, hot chocolate, and more.
9. Kamakura Prince Hotel
Kamakura Prince Hotel is situated in a fantastic spot with views of Sagami Bay and Enoshima, and is an 8-minute walk from Shichirigahama Station. It is on top of a hill, with an incline elevator for easy access on foot.
All guestrooms have floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning ocean panoramas. Mt. Fuji can even be seen on a clear day from several rooms, and there are often lovely sunsets in the evening.
Kamakura Prince Hotel holds regular fairs and events, including special dinners and afternoon teas showcasing the latest seasonal ingredients. The restaurant has large windows capturing the horizon, making the lavish dinners taste even better.
Adjoining the hotel is the Shichirigahama Golf Driving Range, where guests can practice their shots out in the open, without being hemmed in by a net. The driving range is lit up at night, and is a must-visit for golf lovers.
10. HOTEL AO KAMAKURA
HOTEL AO KAMAKURA, located 2 minutes on foot from Koshigoe Station, was opened by Kamakura Matsubaraan, a famous local restaurant specializing in soba noodles and other dishes with sake. The hotel is themed around the gradients of blue in the ocean and sky, and is full of painstaking attention to detail guaranteeing nothing but pure bliss for guests.
The modern guestrooms are likewise based around the traditional Japanese hues of blue. Each room is colored and named after a different shade, giving off serene, laid-back vibes.
Freshly made soba noodles and à la carte dishes are served at Kamakura Matsubaraan Ao, the hotel’s restaurant. All ingredients come fresh from the sea and land, and are designed to pair with local sake and seasonal craft beer.
There is also a rooftop terrace on the 4th floor, which is the perfect venue to enjoy the magnificent sunset over the sea of Shonan. The hotel staff are all in the know about Kamakura and Shonan sightseeing, and can offer great suggestions for your itinerary - so don’t hesitate to ask!
Jump Into Japanese History and Unwind by the Sea in Kamakura!
Blessed by both natural wonders like the sea and mountains, alongside a profound historical significance, Kamakura is full of hotels making the most of its spectacular location and scenery. All the hotels introduced here have convenient access to tourist destinations, like Kamakura Station and the city’s many beaches, making them perfect for both travelers and leisure-seekers alike. Plus, they each boast luxury perks to help heal travel fatigue and get you geared up for another day!
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The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.