Sutainability at Aman Kyoto

Sustainability at Aman Kyoto

A world-leading eco-sensitive destination  

In a hidden garden close to Kinkaku-ji Temple, Aman Kyoto and its secret garden sit within reach of the city's 17 Unesco World Heritage Sites. Kyoto has always had a head and heart for protecting nature, preserving past treasures, and looking to the future. Founded 1,200 years ago, Kyoto is forever linked to the sustainability conversation since it bears the name of the 1997 treaty drafted by the United Nations to tackle global warming.  


Kyoto by bike

Kyoto is celebrated for being explored easily, and in a greener way, by foot or by bicycle. At Aman Kyoto, electric bikes allow guests to explore by two wheels, in the most traditional way. The hotel is only 30 minutes from the centre, yet it feels like a rural retreat. In contrast to Japan's capital, Kyoto City is lauded for its restrictions on building heights and for having one of the world's most sustainable waste-management systems. The easy-to-use public transport system has also reduced the amount of traffic in the city.  

A brighter future

Fireflies — the beetles famous for glowing so beautifully in the dark — as with all insects, play a vital role in the ecosystem, so their declining population has been of concern. In Japan, they are called 'hotaru' and their glow in hot summer nights, is known as 'hotaru-gari'. Since riverbanks are their habitat, and they need it to be clean to thrive, Aman Kyoto’s team has joined the local community in cleaning of a nearby stream to protect their future and ensure our environment is as un-polluted as possible.  

Biophilia and biodiversity 

Aman Kyoto is set in a once-forgotten secret garden with many indigenous trees such as cedars, Camphor trees and evergreen shrubs such as andromeda, camellia, and blue oaks, across its 80 acres, including 72 acres of permanent forest. In the early summer, guests can admire beautiful vivid green maples, and in the autumn, the setting is resplendent in red leaves. With grounds designed to self-irrigate, rainwater is captured through the site's numerous hidden caves and water tunnels. This is a true sanctuary soundtracked by the natural sounds of water and wind, and frogs and cicadas in summer. Time in the meditative gardens quickly resets the nervous system of all who relax here.  


Seasonality and locality 

The spirit of valuing the four distinct seasons of the year is deeply rooted in Japanese culture. Celebrating the significance of seasonality, Aman Kyoto works with local farmers, sourcing more than a third of its fresh vegetables from the immediate region including vegetables from Kamigamo, organic rice from Tango, and free-range eggs from Ohara. Reflected in Aman Kyoto’s cuisine, the seasons can be experienced through the resort’s dedicated afternoon tea which changes throughout the year according to the produce available.  

Showcasing ancient artisanal skills and rituals  

The painstaking work of world-class artisans is visible and tangible across Aman Kyoto's interiors, from the handmade raku tile panels, custom-made ceramic tiles, traditional delicate Japanese lanterns, and scroll paintings by local artist Yuji Sakai. Carefully selected artefacts — precious wabi-sabi vases, artworks and collectable antiques — all represent Japan's refined aesthetic and creative values. Aman's respect for local culture and local craftsmanship is unrivalled.  

Housekeeping heroes 

Laundry operations typically account for 20% of total energy and water use. As at all Aman hotels, when guests choose not to have bed linens or bath towels changed, Aman Kyoto makes a donation to the Kamiyagawa River Beautifying Association – a charity which strives to keep the waterway clean, supporting firefly population growth and conservation activities with the local community.