From a distance, the building that houses Hoshinoya is another high-rise wrapped in glass and steel. Up close it’s apparent that the steel facade is actually intricately patterned. “It’s called Edo kimono, ” explains Fumi Arai, a public relations manager at the hotel. “In the Edo period, commoners were not allowed to wear patterned kimonos, so they developed Edo komon.” It’s a tightly repeating pattern that looks solid from a distance but is discernible up close. “We are a ryokan This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Two Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 49 Checked Out Why is hotel art so boring? Arts & Culture City Guide The New York Edition A serene stay in the Flatiron District. Arts & Culture City Guide The Hoxton, Williamsburg A British bolthole in Brooklyn. Arts & Culture The Touch Hoshinoya Kyoto At the edge of Kyoto, a slow sailboat takes hotel guests downriver to a bygone world. Arts & Culture Issue 32 Seven Cuts An umbrella. An octopus. A mask. Tokyo seen through still life portraits. Arts & Culture City Guide Issue 32 Yaeca Home Store A shop inside a home.