Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tokyo, Japan - Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel

Shibuya Crossing by day (as seen from the hotel bar, Bello Visto)

There are many fabulous luxury hotels in Tokyo, but for those of you who are on more of a budget, or need to stay for an extended period of time, the Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel is a great choice and very centrally located. I stayed here on a business trip and loved how close it was to the famous Shibuya Crossing (featured in the movie Lost in Translation) and the Shibuya 109 (a huge mall with over 100 stores), a great area for both shopping and feeling the frenetic energy of the city. The Shibuya crossing "scarmble" is not to be missed. When the lights turn red at this busy junction, they all turn red at the same time in every direction. Traffic stops completely and pedestrians surge into the intersection from all sides. If you are too claustrophobic to take part in this, you can watch from the second-floor of the Starbucks (one of the busiest in the world) on the corner of the crossing.
Shibuya Crossing by night (as seen from the hotel bar)
All of the rooms at the Cerulean Tower are located between the 19th and 37th floors and have spectacular views of Tokyo. There are many different dining options within the hotel as well, and when I was feeling the need to take a break from Japanese cuisine, I ate in the lobby café called the Garden Kitchen Caramelo, as well as in the Italian restaurant, Oli. The hotel bar, Bello Visto, is on the top floor of the hotel, and has spectacular views of Tokyo including Shinjuku skyline, Roppongi skyline, the Tokyo tower and even Mt. Fuji. The bar has an extensive wine list and live piano player on weekends.

Mt. Fuji at sunset, as seen from the hotel bar, Bello Visto 

The lobby of the hotel
The rooms are small, but comfortable and modern, and Japanese beds are hard, so you may have to ask for a mattress topper, as I did. The most amusing part of the room is all of the options on the toilet, even a seat warmer! The view from the hotel room, whether day or night, was simply stunning. We took taxis each night to various sections of Tokyo and none of the popular neighborhoods and destinations are more than a 15 minute ride away from the hotel. The airport shuttle bus even stops directly at the hotel, which is an added convenience.

Our room by day

Our room by night

Some of the many options on the loo!
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