To reach Osaka from Arashiyama, we took a train from Arashiyama to Kyoto Station, then another train from Kyoto station to Osaka station. Thankfully, we managed to find an express train that only made a few stops from Kyoto to Osaka. Unfortunately, the train was packed with people returning to Osaka from Kyoto on a Sunday evening. Once we got to Osaka station, I had our route all mapped out, and I knew we had to get on the Osaka loop subway line going counter clockwise. When I did the route planner, it did not say anything about there being branches to this loop, so we hopped on the first loop line train that we found. Once we got on the train, I was nervous that it was not the right train, especially when almost everyone got off at the stop before the stop we were supposed to get off. Never a good sign. Well, the subway changed tracks and headed off to Universal Studios Osaka, and the next stop was not for several minutes! When we got off the subway, we were way far away from where we wanted to be. To make matters worse, the kids were tired and hungry, we were exhausted from a long weekend of sightseeing, and it was just bad.
We waited for a train to come along going the other way for several minutes. When we made it back, we then had to transfer back to a train the would hopefully take us to the next station so that we could change to a different subway line that went out to the area where the Hyatt Regency is located. The Hyatt Regency is in an area of Osaka close to the waterfront and some office buildings and event centers, but not really close to anything else. From the end of the Chuo line, we took the New Tram and then walked up to the hotel around 8:00 pm. Man, we were exhausted! Only later did we learn that the Hyatt Regency Osaka offers a complimentary shuttle from Osaka station, so our whole ordeal on the subway could have been easily avoided. Insider tip: always check on complimentary transportation options offered by your hotel before schlupping it all over Osaka with two grumpy kids, a double stroller and three backpacks. Yikes!
Thankfully, we had reached the peaceful oasis that is the Hyatt Regency. Since we lived in Hyatts for some time, we used points and were upgraded to a corner room with a small dining table! I was a little concerned because our room came with two double beds, and Austin and I have trouble fitting comfortably on a double bed, but it ended up working out fine. We had a wonderfully deep tub, and once we got our crabby children in bed, Austin headed down to the gym level where they had hot and cold pools, a sauna and steam room. I opted for a nice bath, since we don’t get that option in our little wet bathroom in Samgilpo.
When Owen’s crib came, they also brought a cute little robe and slippers that fit Landon perfectly. We discovered adult matching robes, so that was fun to all wear matching kimono-style robes together. The next morning, we headed down to the indoor pool Asian-style in our robes and slippers. The indoor pool was a little cold for Owen and Landon, but we convinced them to get in the pool in between dips in the hot tub. In Japan, everyone must wear swim caps, including Owen, so that was fun to see him in a little lycra cap. Owen loves the water and splashed around and kicked his legs. Landon did not like how cold it was, but could be coerced into practicing a little swimming in the colder pool. The main pool had four, 25-meter lanes, and a hot tub. The outdoor pool seemed more for recreational use, but it didn’t open until 10:00 am.
As a souvenir, the Hyatt Regency staff gave the kids several masterfully folded origami animals. I almost didn’t want Landon to even touch them because they were so beautiful! There was also a neat origami folding station in the lobby of the hotel. Unfortunately, I am very untalented in this area, so when Landon and I went to check out the station we could not figure out the instructions for even the simplest creation!
As far as food goes, we decided to forgo struggling with children at the fancy restaurants in the hotel, and instead headed over to the shopping area across the street where we found plenty of restaurants and convenience stores to fulfill all of our needs. We miss our Platinum Hyatt status and the lounge access!
We love Hyatts, and this Regency did not disappoint! Located far from the city center, but relatively close to Osaka Aquarium and Tempozan Marketplace and Ferris Wheel, this was a perfect place to finish off our stay in Japan. To reach the Kansai International airport from the hotel, we were going to take a taxi, but front desk staff helped us arrange to catch an Airport Limosine bus that stopped right at the front doors of the hotel! This saved us money, and was very convenient.