The Okura has a distinct preserved-in-amber quality to it. There are touches of 60's decor everywhere you look, the spaces are invariably hushed and everywhere you go, there's someone standing there, bowing at you. The hotel seems to have been designed to be timelessly classy, and that shines through in some parts and not others. The lobbies and the hotel bar (the Orchid) are deliciously retro and very, very cool. The pool, locker room and bathhouse, however, just feel dated. The shopping arcades in the basement are downright baffling, with their procession of shops packed with dowdy, dusty stuff.
Which is not to say that the facilities aren't clean and well-maintained. Quite to the contrary. Our room was neat as a pin and colossal by Tokyo standards. The pool was large enough to actually get a decent swim in (though annoyingly, you have to pay an extra fee to use it). The bed was comfortable and firm and though there must have been smoking rooms around, we didn't catch of a whiff of it anywhere. Free wi-fi everywhere was a nice touch. And the room had a nice, deep tub to soak in, which was delightful.
Some people have commented on how dead the neighborhood is, and I can't refute that. You are sandwiched between the Swedish embassy, a handful of corporate towers and some nondescript apartment blocks. But then, if you want to get all rowdy, the main drag in Roppongi is a short walk away and there are 3 subway stations nearby.
On balance, I'd recommend this place. I'm sure you could stay somewhere cheaper or more glam, but the Okura is perfectly pleasant and is an experience unto itself.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Japanese traditional design is carefully preserved, guest rooms ranging from standard to suites are available, providing an array of room choices each offering true relaxation. It is our hope that guests, greeted upon arrival in the room by a traditional folded paper crane, will enjoy a comfortable stay. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Okura Tokyo Hotel
- Okura Tokyo Minato
- Hotel Okura Tokyo Japan