Welcome to Gojozaka Machiya

Presentation   –   Detailed Description   –   Location   –   Guest Reviews

Gosan no kiri Kamon

Gojozaka Machiya - The front garden


This is Samurai Joe’s place and we’re happy to share it with you.  This is our latest and largest project and we hope you’ll like it. Joe’s family crest is the famous “Gosan No Kiri” (5-3 Paulownia), consisting of three leaves and an inflorescence of 3-5-3 flowers. The Toyotomi clan, led by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, later adopted the Paulownia Seal for use as the crest of his clan.

(Please note that the decoration of the house  may change with the season.)

Here is a more detailed description of the Gojozaka Machiya.
(you can click on any photo to see a larger one).

Floor Plan

The floor plan of the house will make it easier for you to understand the position and layout of the various rooms and areas of this house.  Simply click on the small graphic to see a larger one.

Floor Plan - Gojozaka Machiya 1F
Floor Plan - Gojozaka Machiya 2F

The Entrance – “Genkan”

Gojozaka Machiya - The entrance "Genkan" with an old "Noh" mask

The “Genkan” is where you enter the house, hang your coat and leave your shoes.  You are welcomed by an old Noh Mask (Komote, which means young girl)  placed in a niche.  Needless to say, this is not really a traditional feature of a standard Machiya, but we liked the idea and we hope you’ll enjoy it.  From here, you can enter the western bedroom on your left, walk up the stairs to the second floor, find the toilet and the bathroom ahead of you, or enter the dining kitchen.

"Noh Mask" called "Koomote" meaning young girl

The LDK – Living  Dining  Kitchen

Gojozaka Machiya – View from the kitchen corner, the dining table, the living space and the Tokonoma (Alcove) with Samurai Joe.
Gojozaka Machiya – The dining table in the kitchen, with seating for up to ten persons

From the “Genkan’, you reach the Dining / Kitchen. A large wood table occupies the center part of this room and will seat up to ten persons. This is where everybody can get together for a simple breakfast or a complete dinner.

The space continues into the Japanese style tatami mat living room where you’ll seat on cushion and low chairs around an old table to share a drink, in front of Joe who’s standing still in the “Tokonoma” (Alcove).

The Tokonoma (Alcove) with Samurai Joe. The garden is behind the "Shôji" paper doors
The living space -- enjoy the Japanese like living style sitting and lying on the tatami mats.

The living room is a traditional Japanese tatami mat room that opens to a Japanese garden. We placed a coffee table made from an old Hibachi in the center of the room. (Note that if there are more than 8 guests, futons can be placed in this room which then becomes a bedroom during the day — a common way of using space in Japan.)

By the way, we know how cold Kyoto can be in the Winter, and we knew something had to be done about this.  So for added comfort, we have installed “Floor Heating” around the ground floor, in the dining room, under the tatami mats in the living room, and in front of the kitchen.  And for the Summer, when it’s unbearably hot outside, you’ll appreciate the fact that every room has its own air conditioning unit.



From there, you can enjoy the large flat screen HDTV hidden behind the paper doors of the closet (you’ll find a BD Player and have access to Netflix for unlimited movie and TV series enjoyment).

The Kitchen


The fully equipped kitchen is spacious and functional. You’ll find everything necessary to prepare a coffee or a breakfast, or even cook a sophisticated meal.  A sink, induction heating plate, dish washer, and all the necessary appliances you’d expect to find in a home: fridge with freezer, coffee maker, electric kettle, toaster, rice cooker, oven/wave oven, pressure cooker, blender, and all the pans and cutlery and plates and glasses, etc.


Gojozaka Machiya - The fully equipped modern Kitchen
Everything you'll need to eat at home during your stay is available
The Hotei san gods in the kitchen protect the house against fire

The Bathrooms


Ground Floor

The bathroom is located behind a sliding wooden door straight from the entrance.  You first enter the laundry room with a fully automatic All-In-One Washer / Dryer (something travelers will truly appreciate.)    

The laundry room and the bathroom are behind a sliding door near the entrance
The traditional wooden bathroom
The wooden bathroom is made of Japanese cypress wood. On one side, you have the shower and corner to wash yourself, and on the other, the bathtub.  The bathroom is an old style traditional wooden one, but the whole system is controlled by a modern electronic system — you simply press a button and the bathtub will automatically fill up with hot water. The voice of a charming Japanese lady will announce when the bath is ready. After a long day of visiting temples and shrines, there is nothing more relaxing than a good Japanese hot bath.  Trust us on this!

Kiyomizu Machiya - The modern "washlet" toilet

The toilet is located right next to the bathroom.  The Japanese “washlet” will probably surprise you at first.  And yes, we do provide instructions in English about its usage.

Upper Floor

For the convenience of larger group of guests, we have installed a second toilet and a shower room upstairs.

Gojozaka Machiya - Shower Room



Access to the upper is through regular stairs that are not as steep and narrow as the ones often found in old traditional machiya. The upper floor features two independent Japanese tatami mat rooms and a toilet and shower room area — something larger group of guests will certainly appreciate. From the stairs, you have independent access to both bedrooms.



The first bedroom on the left is a Japanese tatami mat room (Geisha style room with old wedding kimono and a “Tokonoma” or Alcove). Futons are placed on the tatami mats. An old “Tansu” or furniture is at your disposal to place your clothes if you so wish.

The second Japanese tyle tatami mat bedroom is the Oiran room. Here also, the room is used as both a seating area with a low table and cushions  during the day, and a bedroom with futons placed on the tatami mats during the night.


The Garden

We actually have two gardens in this house. The first one is right in front of the entrance and welcomes our guests. It is a simple row of green “tokusa” at the bottom of a wooden wall.  A small island of moss surrounds a Maple tree in the middle of a gravel area. The second garden is located at the back of the house, in front of the living room. Large bamboo trees come out of the gravel floor, next to another maple tree.  Again, a small island of moss hosts a “Tsukubai” or small washing bassin in front of a Japanese lantern. Both of these gardens are meant to be looked at and not walked about.

The garden in front of the house
The garden at the back of the house




Details of the items found around the house…


Gojozaka Machiya Presentation   –   Detailed Description  –  Location   –   Guest Reviews

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