Books Design

Wallpaper City Guide: Kyoto


Just the other day I was posting about a new Tokyo guide from Louis Vuitton, something I haven’t seen for myself, but one guide I have seen is one of the latest releases from Wallpaper‘s “City Guide” series, covering the city of Kyoto.

I picked up the Tokyo edition when the series was first launched, and have to say that I always found it to be a rather nice guide. Sure, it’s far from exhaustive, but it’s not meant to be. This is for someone who is coming into town for a few days or a weekend — pretty much the sort of trip I do when I go to other cities in Asia — and wants to have a primer on what is really worth seeing in terms of design-related spots. Sort of like a city article in Casa Brutus or PEN, but in book form.


So now comes the Kyoto guide, a city I myself am not particularly familiar with — I’ve done the temple tour, and that’s about it. What you get here is the same idea as what was done with the Tokyo guide: a curated look at Kyoto, the cool and stylish — you know, the sort of thing you’d see showcased in an issue of Wallpaper.


Having gone through this, I’m actually very much looking forward to my next trip to Kansai, and intend on spending a day or two in Kyoto, if only to at least check out some of the cafes, like Café Indépendants (pictured). I’ve heard that an Osaka guide is also in the planning stages, which I’ll definitely want as well.

What else do I like? The compact format, the fact that photography comes first — something you get in a lot of Japanese travel guides, which is definitely to my liking — and that they include some pages to take notes.