I've stayed in hotels in most countries in Europe (France, Spain, Germany, Italy) and I had NEVER seen a room as small as the one I got here. I couldn't take 2 steps without bumping into something. I had to put my bag on the bed to open it: the stool provided by the hotel was under the desk, and frankly had I pulled it out from there, I wouldn't have had any room to move. BUt first, getting to the hotel is a heck of a chore. The airport limousines buses that run from the airport do not stop at that hotel, although: they stop at the ANA Intercontinetal. at the Excel Tokyu, and others. So, I took a taxi from the airport, and the cab driver stopped 3 times to ask for directions (with the meter running). By the time he found the hotel, the meter had run to 22,000 yen (so, I was in for almost $300 at the $1/7500 yen FX rate) while the Japanese friend who had recommended me the hotel had told me the cab ride would cost me about $150 (i.e. half of the actual fare). Then when we got to the hotel, they have stairs in front, and not a ramp in sight (so clearly they don't expect their guests to have any bags). No porter, or bell boy. You haul your bags yourself and see how well you manage to get them into the lobby which itself will be crowded if ever there are more than a dozen people there at a tme. The lobby area can reasonably accommodate 8 to 12 people: the 2 chairs and the sofa can take 5. Another 2 can stand by the coffee machine, and 4 to 5 will be shoulder-to-shoulder in front of the counter. (I am not exaggerating).
But will all these negatives, the staff is at least courteous and tries to accommodate (in the areas where they can: there's absolutely nothing they can do about the rooms size).
The TV channels are all Japanese. So good luch trying (at the end of a busy day) to watch anything that your brain can comprehend. Luckily, I had saved some episodes of Law & Order on my laptop.
Restaurant: Contrarily to what some people have said here, the hotel does NOT have a restaurant. However, there is an Italian restaurant adjacent to the hotel, which has cleverly managed a connecting door allowing you to go from the hotel lobby into the restaurant. But you CANNOT charge your restaurant consumption onto your bill, and you cannot order room service. If the restaurant was so much as "affiliated" to the hotel, as a guest in the hotel, you would be able to charge your dinner and pay one final bill. So, be prepared to settle your bill with cash or credi card.
Location: In terms of location, I think one can do better 10 times. The hotel is remote from all the activities, and it is on a steep slope, whichever way you take. The first couple of days, I did enjoy stretching my calves. But then, that got old quickly. So, I berated myself the rest of my stay for not chosing something in the mainstream area, or closer to subways.
Price/Quality ratio: I don't know how much the other hotels would have charged (a Japanese friend had made the booking for me) but I stayed in the B Akasaka from Aug 7 to 14. I so wished I had booked somewhere that would allow me to get quickly back in my hotel at the end of the day. This was not the case in this hotel. But the people at the front desk really try to make up for the hotel's shortcomings. But there's no concierge. Whoever are the 2 people manning the front desk at the time, they're the go-to folks for everything else, including answering phones. So, good luck trying to get their attention in busy times. One good thing: the hotel has washing machines and dryer. So, for us, it was good to be able to wash our clothes before leaving to our next destination. Also, on days when you are too tired to venture out and face that slope on the way back, the hotel has a vending machine selling noodle soups. I wouldn't buy them every day, but one night, I was very tired, and the restaurant next door was closed (reserved for a function). So, I didn't have options. That vending machine and its noodles soup saved my life...
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the hub of the business, entertainment, dining and shopping districts of cosmopolitan Akasaka. Close-by is TBS Studios, Akasaka Sacas and two major subway stations providing easy access to Ginza, Shibuya, Shinjuku and Omote Sando. A short walk away you’ll find the Imperial Palace and the popular nightlife and entertainment area of Roppongi including Roppongi Hills, Tokyo Midtown, Suntory Museum of Art and the National Art Centre. The hotel also features Image SPA facility. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The b Akasaka Hotel Minato
- b Akasaka Minato
- b Akasaka Hotel Minato
- The b Akasaka Tokyo, Japan