At Aoi Kyoto Stay, many visitors are able to step into a day-to-day lifestyle of the locals in the historical city by staying in a Machiya. Machiyas are traditional townhouses that existed since the Edo period (1603-1867), which functioned as residential homes and workspaces. Over the centuries, many have been destroyed at an alarming rate by fires and earthquakes, and residents who opt for more modern homes or simply cannot afford maintaining them. We believe structures like those are cultural treasures worth preserving and we are passionate about protecting the beautiful townhouses of Kyoto. We have not only preserved these homes, but we also made them more accessible and usable for future generations. When renovating the houses, we emphasized on modernizing them in accordance to the current hotel and safety standards while also maintaining the unique atmosphere of each Machiya.
Aoi, the Wild Ginger, is the symbol of the two Kamo Shrines – Shimogamo-jinja and Kamigamo-jinja (UNESCO World Heritage Sites) and is also namesake for the Aoi-Matsuri, which is one of the three main festivals of Japan's former imperial capital, Kyoto. It has a long tradition in Japanese heraldry and is mainly known for its appearance in the Mon (crest) of the Tokugawa clan which ruled over Japan for more than 250 years and paved the way for the country's modernization.