Modern Architecture Course

Select this course to tour modern architecture in Kyoto.

1. Doshisha University
Established in 1875 as a Protestant institution, Doshisha University has been designated an Important Cultural Asset and stands today as a superb example of nineteenth-century modern Western architecture. Designed primarily by American architect D.C. Green in the American Gothic style, it features an unadorned sophistication and remains the oldest brick structure in Kyoto City.

* Address: Karasuma Higashi-iru, Imadegawa-dori, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 1-minute walk from Imadegawa Station on the Karasuma Subway Line
15-minute walk from Demachi Yanagi Station on the Keihan Railway

2. St. Agnes Episcopal Church (Anglican), Kyoto
Designed by the American architect J.M. Gardiner, this building was completed in 1898 and was used as a chapel for St. Agnes' Junior High and Senior High School. The bold brick facade and beautiful exposed timber trusses make St. Agnes a stunning example of Meiji-era (1868-1912) churches. The Meijikan, which is a Designated Cultural Asset, is currently under construction and will be used as a salon after its renovation.

* Address: Horimatsu-cho, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 3-minute walk from Marutamachi Station on the Karasuma Subway Line
* Website:

3. Former main building of Kyoto Prefecture Office
Constructed in 1904 by Matsumuro Shigemitsu and other Kyoto prefecture engineers, this building is the oldest existing example of a Kyoto government office. It is valued both as an important piece of architectural history and as a model of superb design. The surrounding garden, which was arranged by Ogawa Jihei (the man responsible for the gardens at the Heian-jingu Shrine and Murin-an), is representative of late nineteenth and early twentieth-century Japanese gardens. The furniture was produced by Sugita Kougoro, a Tokyo native who is known today as the father of Japan's Western furniture.

* Address: Yabunouchi-cho, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 10-minute walk from Marutamachi Station on the Karasuma Subway Line

4. The Museum of Kyoto Annex
Originally housing the Kyoto Branch of the Bank of Japan, this 1906 structure was designed by Tatsuno Kingo (the architect behind the Kyoto Chuo Branch of Mizuho Bank) and Nagano Uheiji. The 2-story brick building is a classic example of late nineteenth-century Western architecture, featuring an imposing frame and wealth of ornate detailing. This hall is occasionally used for exhibitions and concerts.

* Address: Sanjo-Takakura, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 5-minute walk from Karasuma-Oike Station on the Karasuma Subway Line

5. Kyoto City Office
The main plaza in front of this office (built in 1927) provides a relaxed, leisurely atmosphere. The Western-style government building incorporates elements of Eastern design.

* Address: 488 Teramachi-Oike, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 1-minute walk from Kyoto Shiyakusho-mae Station on the Tozai Subway Line

6. Chourakukan
The American architect J. M. Gardiner built the Chourakukan in 1909 in a section of Maruyama Park as a villa for the wealthy Murai Kichibei. It was rebuilt into its current form in 1915, but most of the original furniture and interiors remain. It is used as a reception hall to welcome guests from all over the world.

* Address: Maruyama park, Maruyama-cho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 5-minute walk from City Bus Stop Gion
10-minute walk from Gionshijo Station on the Keihan Railway
* Website:


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Gekkeikan Okura Sake Museum 【South Area】

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Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art [East Area]

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Kyoto City Office 【Central Area】

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