Nintendo’s former HQ in Kyoto is now a hotel – and you can stay there

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While we all know and love Kyoto for its beautiful temples and bamboo grooves, did you know it’s also the birthplace of Nintendo? If you are planning a trip to the old capital, there is a new hotel you need to check out.

Photo: Plan Do See

Marufukuro is set to open inside Nintendo’s former headquarters in the same area where the gaming company was founded by Fusajiro Yamauchi in 1889. The building itself dates back to 1933 when the company was known under the name of Yamauchi Nintendo and manufactured hanafuda (Japanese playing cards) and Western-style playing cards called karuta Where toranpu. The sign outside the building pays homage to Nintendo’s humble beginnings with the words karuta and toranpu on the plate.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do See

The head office has remained vacant since 1959 when the company moved to a larger building. Breathing new life into the historic space, Tokyo-based renovation company Plan Do See transformed it into a brand new hotel.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do SeeA first design sketch for the project

With the help of world-renowned architect Tadao Ando, ​​who oversaw the design of the hotel and the addition of a new annex, Hotel Marufukuro is finally ready to open its doors on friday april 1st.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do SeeOne of the guest rooms before renovation

The hotel houses a total of 18 rooms, including seven suites, distributed in the old building and the new annex. Rooms are between 33m² and 79m² and feature a mix of different furnishings. When booking, you can choose to stay in the old building or the new wing. There is also a restaurant, bar, spa and gym on the hotel grounds.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do SeeAnother photo of the building before the renovation

Preserving the antiquated atmosphere of Nintendo HQ, the hotel retains many architectural details from the 1930s and original fixtures.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do See

True Nintendo fans might even notice some of the original designs from Nintendo’s earliest playing cards hidden behind the iron bars of the hotel window.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do See

While the interior of the old building has been updated, the exterior of the building remains intact, including the old-fashioned green tile roof.

Marufukuro Kyoto
Photo: Plan Do See

Reservations for the hotel are officially open now. You can book an all-inclusive stay from ¥100,000 per night for two that includes breakfast, dinner, minibar access, drinks, and light meals at the lounge.

Marufukuro is near Kyoto’s Kamo and Takase rivers and is a six-minute drive from Kyoto Station. For more details, visit the official website website.

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