Kyoto, Japan’s ancient capital, is famous for its historic temples and gardens but it is also home to a number of hi-tech companies, including games giant Nintendo. Until it moved to new premises in 1959, the company – originally founded as a playing cards maker in 1889 – had its headquarters in a four-storey structure that was completed in 1930. Now the building will be turned into a hotel by architect Tadao Ando and hospitality company Plan Do See. It’s an example of a shift in mentality. Old houses and offices were once routinely torn down in Kyoto but authorities now see the value in preserving the townscape. A 213-room Ace Hotel is opening in Kyoto this spring in the historic Shinpukan building, formerly the Kyoto Central Telephone Office; the renovation of the 1926 building is being overseen by another famous Japanese architect, Kengo Kuma. As tourism to Kyoto has skyrocketed in recent years, new hotels – and preserved traditions – are much in demand.
Source: Monocle Minute