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Kobe Beef is a prized Japanese delicacy and probably the most widely-known regional specialty food in Japan. It is one of several breeds of Wagyu, or Japanese cattle, which are bred throughout the country and often associated with the area where they are raised. While Kobe Beef is probably the best known type of wagyu outside of Japan, there are many other breeds, such as Matsusaka and Yonezawa Beef, that are equally famous inside the country.

Kobe Beef is distinguished as a tender, flavorful meat that is well marbled with fat. It is produced from pedigreed Tajima breed cattle which were born and slaughtered in Hyogo Prefecture. Despite popular rumor, the cows are not usually fed beer or massaged with sake. Once slaughtered, the meat must pass a series of requirements and only the highest grades of meat with exceptionally high levels of fat marbling earn the Kobe Beef label, which is a strictly-guarded trademark.

Kobe Beef is usually served as steaks, shabu shabu (thin slices of meat quickly boiled in a broth) or sukiyaki (meat slices simmered in a hot pot). One of the best ways to enjoy Kobe Beef is at a teppanyaki restaurant, where a chef grills the meat on an iron plate in front of his guests. Prices vary on the establishment, but you can expect to pay a few thousand yen per hundred grams of beef, while a full meal at a teppanyaki restaurant typically costs between 8,000 and 30,000 yen per person.

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Hotels around Kobe

Top rated in Kobe
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    • Hotel La Suite Kobe Harborland
      Luxury
      Located at the waterfront of Kobe Harborland, Hotel La Suite offers spacious rooms with ocean views and a spa bath. It features concierge service, a French restaurant and massage treatments. Free Wi-Fi/wired internet and free videos on demand are available in the rooms. This hotel was selected as one of Top 25 Hotels in Japan by TripAdvisor's Travelers' Choice Award 2013. Luxurious rooms come with a large flat-screen TV, a DVD player and extra long beds. Bathrooms have a TV and a hot tub, some with sea views. Amenities include a bathrobe, a humidifier with aroma diffuser and Phytomer brand bath salt. Guests at La Suite Kobe can lounge on comfortable sofas on the rooftop terrace. The hotel offers laundry and baby-sitting services. Bicycle and laptop rentals are available, and a free internet-PC is provided at the lobby. Creative French cuisine is presented in a decor of soft carpeting and wide windows at restaurant Le Coeur, while cafe Grand Blue serves a wide range of drinks and light meals. Restaurant Kokoro offers contemporary Japanese cooking inspired on traditional dishes. Hotel La Suite Kobe Harborland is a 4-minute walk from Minato-Motomachi Station. It's only a 3-minute walk from Kobe Tower, and a 6-minute stroll from Meriken Park. Kobe Airport is a 15-minute drive away.
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    • ORIENTAL HOTEL
      Luxury
      Overlooking the beautiful Kobe Harbour, Oriental Hotel offers luxurious accommodation in the heart of the historic Kyu-Kyoryuchi area. Guests can work out at the free-use fitness centre, or relax with beauty massages at the on-site salon. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property. Rooms with chic d?cor are fitted with stylish furnishings, and feature a flat-screen TV, a fridge and an electric kettle. The en suite bathroom includes a bath tub and free toiletries. Most rooms boast views of either the harbour or the city. The 24-hour front desk at the Hotel Oriental offers luggage storage services for free. In-room massages can be arranged at an extra charge. A range of items like a DVD player, humidifier and iron can be borrowed from the reception. The hotel is a 10-minute walk from both JR Sannomiya and Motomachi stations. Shin-kobe Shinkansen (bullet train) Station is a 5-minute drive away. Kobe City Museum is situated right next to the hotel, and Meriken Park can be reached within a 5-minute walk. Main Dining by the House of Pacific serves sophisticated Western dishes, while Kanesaka offers delicately prepared sushi. Teppanyaki can be enjoyed at Steak House Medium Rare, and The Bar J. W. Hart lets guests savour cocktails with the gorgeous harbour views.
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    • Arima Onsen Tocen Goshobo
      Luxury
      Founded in the 12th century and beloved by Junichiro Tanizaki and other Japanese novelists, Tosen Goshobo is the oldest of the hot-spring inns at Arima. Standing beside the Taki River, it features outdoor hot-spring baths and traditional in-room meals and is a 5-minute walk from Arima Onsen Train Station. The Japanese rooms have traditional futon bedding and a minibar. The 20 rooms at Arima Onsen Tosen Goshobo include tatami (woven-straw) floors and shoji paper screens. Guests can relax at the seating area and enjoy the zen atmosphere with a cup of green tea. Bathing facilities are shared. Right next to the Hankyu Highway Bus station, the ryokan is a 3-minute walk from the Arima Toys and Automata Museum. Zuihoji Park is 900 metres away. Shin-Kobe Shinkansen Station is a 30-minute train ride. Breakfast is Japanese-style with black-bean tofu, and dinner features specialties such as Kobe beef, fresh fish from Akashi-Ura port.
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    • Arima Onsen Taketoritei Maruyama
      Luxury
      Taketoritei Maruyama is a non-smoking Japanese-style accommodation featuring natural hot spring baths for private use and free Wi-Fi throughout the property. From its hilltop location a 15-minute walk from Kobe Electric Railway Arima Onsen Station, it offers sweeping views of Arima Onsen. Guests at Maruyama Taketoritei can privately unwind in a hot spring bath, or relax with a massage treatment. Facilities include drinks vending machines, while a free shuttle service is available to/from Kobe Electric Railway Arima Onsen Station and Arima Onsen Bus Stop. Air-conditioned rooms feature a seating area with a tatami (woven-straw) floor and a low table with seating cushions. Some rooms offer beds, while others have traditional futon bedding. All rooms are equipped with an LCD TV, yukata robes and a fridge. The property is a 10-minute walk from the Arima Onsen area. Osaka’s Umeda station is a 55-minute bus ride away.
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    • Kobe Guesthouse MAYA
      Budget-friendly
      Offering air-conditioned rooms in the Nada Ward district of Kobe, Kobe Guesthouse MAYA is 3.6 km from Kobe Center for Overseas Migration and Cultural Interaction. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The property is non-smoking and is set 9.3 km from Noevir Stadium Kobe. The units feature a shared bathroom, a hairdryer and bed linen. The area is popular for hiking, and bike hire is available at the hostel. Mount Maya is 16 km from Kobe Guesthouse MAYA, while Onsen-ji Temple is 16 km away. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 10 km from the accommodation.
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    • Tabiyu Abrigo
      Mid-range
      Tabiyu Abrigo is located in the Arima Onsen district of Kobe, a few steps from Arima Toys and Automata Museum, 100 metres from Onsen-ji Temple and 200 metres from Nenbutsu-ji Temple. Featuring mountain and city views, this aparthotel also offers free WiFi. This 3-star aparthotel offers private entrance. All units in the aparthotel are fitted with a kettle. Complete with a private bathroom equipped with a bidet and slippers, the units at the aparthotel have a TV and air conditioning, and selected rooms come with a balcony. At the aparthotel, every unit includes bed linen and towels. The aparthotel is located in a geothermal area, with a number of hot springs nearby for guests to relax in. Guests at the aparthotel will be able to enjoy activities in and around Kobe, like hiking. Popular points of interest near Tabiyu Abrigo include Gokurakuji Temple, Zempuku-ji Temple and Tosen Shrine. The nearest airport is Itami Airport, 23 km from the accommodation.
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    • Arima Grand Hotel
      Luxury
      Boasting an open-air hot springs bath and spacious garden, Arima Grand Hotel is located a 10-minute walk away from Arima Onsen Station. Free WiFi is available in all rooms. Free private parking is also available on site. The entire property is non-smoking, while guests can smoke in the designated smoking area. All air-conditioned rooms come with a flat-screen TV, hairdryer and a mountain view. For guests' comfort, slippers and free toiletries are provided. Some rooms include a private bathroom. A seasonal outdoor pool, various spa and wellness facilities are available at a surcharge. Guests can enjoy the public hot springs bath free of charge. There is also a hot springs bath that is available for private use upon prior reservation at an additional fee. Arima Grand Hotel is situated a 40-minute car ride away from Kobe city and a 25-minute car ride away from Rokko Mountain Snow Park. This accommodation can be reached from Kobe Airport by a 30-minute drive. Mt. Maya is a 35-minute car ride away.
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    • Hotel Hanakoyado
      Mid-range
      Offering stylish rooms with shoji paper screens and Western beds, Hotel Hanakoyado is only a 6-minute walk from Arima Onsen Train Station. It features hot-spring baths and a massage service. The air-conditioned rooms at Hanakoyado Hotel include a fridge and tea maker. Each has an attached toilet, and bathing facilities are shared. Arima Toys and Automata Museum is just 100 metres from the ryokan. JR Sannomiya Train Station is a 35-minute train ride away. Reservable baths for private use are available 24/7. Guests can take a break from the baths to go fishing or hike along one of the area’s trails. Meals are served at Shunju Dining Room and feature grilled fish and meats.
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    • 神戸ホテルジュラク Kobe Hotel Juraku
      Mid-range
      Ideally located in the Chuo Ward district of Kobe, 神戸ホテルジュラク Kobe Hotel Juraku is situated 3.3 km from Noevir Stadium Kobe, 19 km from Tanjo Shrine and 20 km from Mount Maya. With free WiFi, this 3-star hotel offers a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space. The property is non-smoking and is set 2.7 km from Kobe Center for Overseas Migration and Cultural Interaction. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms with a desk, a kettle, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. At 神戸ホテルジュラク Kobe Hotel Juraku the rooms are equipped with bed linen and towels. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a buffet breakfast. Emba Museum of Chinese Modern Art is 21 km from 神戸ホテルジュラク Kobe Hotel Juraku, while Mount Rokko is 23 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 11 km from the hotel.
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    • Kobe Minato Onsen Ren
      Luxury
      Located a 5-minute taxi ride from Sannomiya Station and Motomachi Station, Kobe Minato Onsen Ren boasts a variety of hot spring baths, a year-round hot spring outdoor pool, an indoor swimming pool, a fitness centre and hot stone spa facilities. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property and private parking is available on site at a fee. Each room at this hotel features a terrace with a sea view, a Japanese-style seating area with a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with free toiletries. A fridge, a minibar and an electric kettle are also provided. The hotel offers free shuttle service between Sannomiya Station and the hotel. Other services include massage treatments, dry cleaning, ironing, concierge and luggage storage. Guests can enjoy Japanese dishes prepared using fresh seasonal ingredients at the hotel. Noevir Stadium Kobe is 3.6 km from Kobe Minato Onsen Ren, while Mount Maya is 6 km away. The nearest airport is Osaka Itami Airport, a 40-minute shuttle bus ride from JR Sannomiya Station.
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Experiences around Kobe

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