Karaksa Osaka Namba: eco-friendly hotel for the fambam

I was pleasantly surprised with the hotel my husband chose for us in our recent trip to Osaka, Japan. My only requirement was that it be near Dotonbori, a happy place with a happy vibe. Our hotel had a location score of 9.1.

Dotonbori, the bright heart of Osaka
Karaksa Osaka Namba had a free shuttle to the hotel at certain times of the day. Fortunately, there was one when we arrived on a Cebu Pacific flight that evening.
Free transfers to the hotel, but ¥1000/head if booked for departure

Even if it would have been okay for us to take a train to the hotel, I was so glad that we didn’t have to pull our luggages with all four kids in tow. Afterall, travel time did take an hour long from the Kansai International Airport.

These are the reasons why Karaksa made me smile:

1. Choice of Eco Cleaning.

Upon check in, we were asked to make a choice on how we want our rooms cleaned. We chose Eco Cleaning, which meant that even if our rooms won’t be cleaned, housekeeping would still come to change our towels, collect trash, and provide bottled water daily. Besides, with a little nagging, I was confident that my kids could all make their beds.

Adjoining rooms for a family of six

2. Pick your own amenities.

Near the front desk, guests can choose the amenities they’ll be needing: toothbrushes, wash cloths, razors, cotton buds, etc.

Take only amenities you’ll be needing

In our toilets, the shampoo, conditioner, and soap came in bottle dispensers, which minimized the use of plastics. (The downside: you can’t add these to your collection of hotel amenities brought home as souvenirs or for your child’s grooming kits in school.)

What was also nice was that the bath area was a separate structure from the toilet so that no one will have to wait long for the other to finish doing morning routines. Since we were in adjoining rooms, it’s like four of us can be in the toilet doing separate things.

Separate toilet and bath rooms

3. Toys for kids.

Honestly, this was the first time for me to see a hotel that made toys available for kids. So my nine-year-old learned how to play Othello, which we learned was patented in Japan in 1971. Aside from playing in the lobby, my boys were allowed to take it with them to the room.

Games to keep them away from gadgets

4. Healthy breakfast.

Breakfast was simple, but at the same time healthy. I always had salad with broccoli and tomatoes. There were berries, slices of mangoes and oranges for my yogurt, and a dispenser for soup and drinks. The kids liked the sausages and chicken with rice. Soda was unlimited and free for checked-in guests from 2-9pm. So my son was in Coca-Cola heaven!

Unlimited soda, juice, coffee, tea, soup

5. Guests are expected to sort waste.

I think this is a good practice for people to learn from. Unfortunately, instead of having plates, glasses and saucers that can be re-used, having disposable plates generate a lot of trash. Well at least, the plates are not plastics.

Clean as you go with waste segregation

Finally, we liked the in-room pajamas, which were also provided daily. Hoping next time they could have smaller sizes for kids.

The entire fambam: Ricky, Gail, Isab, Mio, Leo and Luis

So yeah, I was impressed with this hotel not because it was fancy, but because it was making a conscious attempt to be environmentally-friendly. Best, we found the rooms spacious, to think that we were in Japan.

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