Kano Shoju-an tea house *
Kano Shoju-an is a good example of recent sukiya architecture. Its two parts was designed in 1978 by respectively architects Kazuyuki Nimura and Yoshiharu Naya. Kano Shoju-an lies just across a small bridge crossing the stream flowing along Tetsugaku-no-michi, The Path of Philosopher. And walking along this path between Ginkaku-ji and Honen-in to the north, and Nanzen-ji, Konchi-in, and Murin-an to the south, makes Kano Shoju-an a natural stop on the way.
The shop and tea house part of Kano Shoju-an is generally open to the public. And when we passed on our way, we were permitted to enter the tea rooms facing the garden without previous permission.
Kano Shoju-an, 3 Waka-oji, Sakyo-ku, 606 Kyoto
The Kasui-en annex of Miyako Hotel is one of the better (and more accessible) examples of contemporary sukiya architecture, designed by Togo Murano in 1960 ff.
Kasui-en is not open to the general public, but a visit can be arranged by contacting Miyako Hotel.
Miyako Hotel, Keage, Sanjo, Higashiyama-ku, 605 Kyoto
Tel.: (075) 771 7111 / 711 7150 Mr. Hayashi, the office of Kikaku
Fax: (075) 751 2490
Katsura Rikyu *
Katsura Riyku was the countryside estate for the Hajijo princes. It was established in the decades from approximately 1620 to 1660 in Katsura, south-west of Kyoto. In the stroll garden Katsura Rikyu has a series of tea pavilions, Shokin-tei, Shoi-ken, Shoko-ken and Geppa-ro, and together with the three wings of the main building, these structures testify to the development of the sukiya architecture during 17th century. The park garden is outstanding as well, and the spatial composition of the part leading to Shokin-tei, architecture is especially unique in its complexity and quietude. Katsura Rikyu is a must for any architectural study travel to Kyoto.
Together with the other Imperial Gardens: Shugaku-in, Sento Gosho and Gosho, for Katsura Rikyu a reservation need to be made beforehand at the Imperial Household Agency. Depending on whether the group is predominantly foreigners or Japanese people, the application procedure is slightly different. So best advise is to call the Kyoto branch of the Imperial Household Agency early in the planning, in order to make sure the set of rules for exactly your situation. Groups are only permitted up to 4 at one time, so being a large group makes planning somewhat complicated. But the visit to the imperial gardens are so rewarding, that it is worth any troubles getting there. Katsura Rikyu was among the peak experiences of out study tour.
Foreign visitors can make reservations directly at the Imperial Household Agency in Kyoto, located in the Gosho park rectangle just south of the northern gate of the west side. But for study travel arrangements, the application is more safely made on return postcards. You need to include your passport and alien registration number, address and home address, age and sex (you must be at least 20 years old). See also notes above in the section: "Organising the application work."
Due to serious damage to the moss carpet, photographing has recently been prohibited in Katsura Rikyu. The standard guided tour includes a tour around in the garden, passing the tea pavilions Shokin-tei, Shoka-tei, Shoi-ken and Geppa-ro. And on the way, the main shoin is passed by at near hand. But the main shoin is opened only on rare occasions, and an application for access to the interior of the main building will take a really good reason and recommendations from embassies etc.
Katsura Rikyu, Shimizu-cho, Katsura, Ukyo-ku, 616 Kyoto
Imperial Household Agency Kyoto Office, Kyoto Gyoen Nai, Kamigyo-ku, 602-8611 Kyoto
Tel.: (075) 211 1215 Imperial Household Agency
URL: http://sankan.kunaicho.go.jp/english (application info)
See also images from Katsura Rikyu in the lecture presentation of my Ph.D. presentation, Arbejdets Rum (Spaces at Work).
Kinkaku-ji, the Temple of the Golden Pavilion, was built in 1397 as a country estate for Ashikaga Yoshimitsu (1358-1408), the 3rd Muromachi shogun, and after his death it was converted into a Zen temple, Rokuon-ji. The gold leaf covered Golden Pavilion is one of the very few three-story structures of traditional Japanese architecture. The present building is a recent construction after a fire in 1950. The pond garden with its composition of islands of stylised miniature pine trees dates back from 1397. Rinzai Zen Buddhism.
Kinkaku-ji is generally open to the public. But you cannot enter the pavilion, and the garden, designed to be seen from the pavilion, can only be experienced from the side and from behind.
Kinkaku-ji, 1 Kinkakuji-cho, Kita-ku, 603 Kyoto
Tel.: (075) 461 0013
Kiyomizudera was founded in 778, and buildings were erected here around the time where the grid of the Kyoto city rectangle was laid out. Kiyomizudera includes some 30 structures, most of which are reconstructions dating from 1633, and they demonstrate the relatively free architectural layout of the mountain temple. Kiyomizudera has architecture and Buddhist sculpture of considerable interest, and with its location, over-viewing the Kyoto basin and its Heian rectangle form a slightly elevated position; it is a good starting point for a study travel to Kyoto. Hosso Buddhism.
Kiyomizudera is generally open to the public.
Kiyomizudera, 294 1-chome, Kiyomizu, Higashiyama-ku, 605 Kyoto
Tel.: (075) 551 1234
Fax: (075) 551 1287
URL: www.jishujinja.or.jp (only in Japanese)
Continue to Kyoto, places to visit, Ko-L (6 of 11).