6 Reasons You Should Stay at the Okura Hotel During Your Tokyo Vacation
There are 100,000 hotel rooms in Tokyo and just as many sights to see. Hotels in the city run the complete gamut. From a capsule hotel with only a bunk to sleep in, to rooms in the sky in some of the city’s tallest buildings.
For some people, a trip to Japan is a once in a lifetime experience. After spending more than 30 hours planning the trip, you want to stay somewhere special. Your hotel experience should enhance your vacation, not diminish it.
Here are six reasons the Okura Hotel should be your first choice.
1. Omotenashi - True Hospitality
The Japanese concept of omotenashi is a deep respect for hospitality and making people feel welcome. The Hotel Okura Tokyo takes customer service to a personal level.
Excellent concierge is a common theme on customer reviews on Trip Advisor. One reviewer even mentioned that the hotel provided courier service from Tokyo to Osaka to return his forgotten iPad.
The staff isn’t the only amenable aspect of the hotel. The amenities themselves are plenty and thoughtful.
The heated indoor swimming pool offers exercise classes and swimming lessons. The gym has personal trainers and a club for socializing as you cool down. There are also dry and wet saunas, shiatsu massage, and a specially formulated juice blend to restore electrolytes.
Within the hotel are a number of shopping opportunities, including bookstores, boutiques, and a flower shop. There’s also a dental office, an aging clinic, and an optician.
Hotel Okura has anticipated all your needs and met them before you even had to ask.
2. A Hotel with History
Okura Tokyo has a history tied to sporting and the Olympic Games. Built on a site that belonged to an Edo Samurai, the original hotel was completed in time for the Tokyo Olympics. They went on to provide food and beverage service during the Nagano Winter Games, and the new building is set to be finished ahead of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
The original architects honored historical Japanese architecture and contrasted it with modern Western influences. They incorporated design elements like the hishi diamond and arranged furniture to echo plum blossoms.
The current renovation will keep that sense of harmony. It will preserve cherished furnishings, like wall tapestries and paper lanterns, while bringing the Okura up to code. This rebirth of the hotel supports the Shinto belief that death and renewal coincide.
3. The Food
Food memories are among the strongest memories made. Vacation is all about making good memories, so food matters!
The Okura Hotel offers a variety of cuisine: French, Chinese, Japanese, and American. Take your pick of fine dining, sushi, Teppanyaki, or cafe style food. The famed Orchid Bar serves up cocktails with fresh, seasonal fruit and a retro vibe.
Grand Chefs hone each menu with an emphasis on tradition and fine food. Their goal is to please the customer’s palate, and they are happy to work with dietary restrictions.
There’s an expansive breakfast buffet with Asian and Western options. If you’d rather stay in bed, room service begins with breakfast and features a midnight menu for nighttime snackers.
Okura also offers the opportunity to have a Japanese cultural dining experience. You can learn Japanese table manners and origami while enjoying a traditional lunch. It’s just the sort of thing Scarlett Johansson was after in Lost in Translation.
4. Walking Access to Subway Lines
If you can pull yourself away from the comforts of the Hotel Okura, several main subway lines are within walking distance.
You can take the Hibiya Line on a cultural expedition. Ueno Zoological Gardens is Japan’s oldest zoo, built in 1882. Visit giant pandas or explore the Shinobazu Pond, a wildlife habitat for diving birds.
Also on the Hibiya Line is the Tokyo National Museum. With more than 110,000 artworks and artifacts, it’s one of the biggest art museums in the world. Head to Asakusa to climb the 86 steps to the Atago Jinja shrine, and match the samurai who delivered flowers to the Edo shogun.
If shopping and pop culture are more your speed, take the Ginza line to Chuo Dori. The street rivaling 5th Avenue is closed to traffic on the weekends to allow for stress-free shopping sprees. When you’re done shopping, visit the AKB48 Cafe, celebrating the JPop group with the same name.
You can also fulfill your manga and anime desires on the Ginza line. Mandarake Akihabara has eight floors of manga memorabilia, comics, and movies.
5. Surrounding Nightlife
Nearby Roppongi is a nightlife hotspot. Roppongi Hills is a comprehensive mall with 220 restaurants, stores, and movie theaters. Head to the rooftop to admire the city lights from the open-air Sky Deck.
Then take to the streets for bars, clubs, and karaoke. Some clubs party all night long and then some, staying open until lunchtime. There’s also salsa dance clubs to get your heart rate up.
You can listen to live music at a live house or visit the various authentic-style bars. There are British and Aussie pubs and all-American bars.
6. A Chance to Visit Mount Fuji
Make your pilgrimage to the snow-capped Mount Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan. Day trips are available with bus pickup from Okura Tokyo and return by bullet train.
Once there, you’ll drive to the highest accessible point on the mountain for a guided tour. You can take a gondola for panoramic views. There’s even a pirate boat cruise.
Traipse through the ancient crater of Boiling Valley. Watch the sulfurous steam erupt, and try a black egg boiled in the water of the hot spring. The eggs turn black from the sulfur, and it’s said that eating one adds seven years to your life.
The Okura Hotel Has Everything You Need and Everything You Want
With its careful consideration of all the details, the Okura Hotel will enhance your trip to Tokyo. World class restaurants and niceties will keep you entertained on site. A prime location gives you access to the city’s culture and charms.
There’s so much to do in Tokyo that every trip will leave you waiting for your next one. Check out our growing list of places to visit when you inevitably return.