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Conrad Tokyo

Conrad Tokyo

Conrad Tokyo

Address: 1 Chome-9-1 Higashishinbashi, Minato, Tokyo 105-7337, Japan

Telephone: +81 3-6388-8000

http://conradhotels3.hilton.com/en/hotels/japan/conrad-tokyo-TYOCICI/index.html

My Rating: 80%

Price Rating: $$$$$

Hotel Exterior

Hotel Exterior

Summary of Stay: The Conrad Tokyo is a beautiful modern hotel just a short walk from world-class shopping on the Ginza. The hotel begins on the 30th floor and affords guests stunning views of the city and Tokyo bay. 

When I checked in, the front-desk agent had a few issues pulling up my reservation even though I had the confirmation numbers with me. Within 5 minutes, it was all sorted out and I was shown up to my room. While checking in, the concierge came over and introduced himself. He also retrieved print-outs regarding a dining reservation that they had made on my behalf for that night. 

Check-in desk

Check-in desk

The room itself was comfortable, spacious, modern and forgettable. Beyond the cute branded rubber ducky and the 'twig in a vase' that I originally mistook for a Bonsai tree, the room was nothing out of the ordinary. There is a large difference between a luxury hotel and a high-end business hotel. The Conrad Tokyo leans closer to the high-end business side. The room did have a nice view of Tokyo bay and the window seating, though awkward to sit, was a nice touch. The bed was very comfortable and the sheets were high quality. The furniture had some signs of wear but overall, nicely appointed. The closets were decent size but not functional. While they did hold my luggage, there was no room to hang any of my clothes. 

Executive King Room

Executive King Room

The hotel does have a gorgeous pool that sported a panoramic view of Tokyo. The fitness facilities also include a full gym and the Mizuki spa. The attendants were friendly and very professional.

Swimming pool

Swimming pool

I had booked an executive room which gave access to a private lounge that served breakfast, cocktails, etc. When I arrived, I was informed that the lounge was being renovated and they had turned a meeting room into a temporary lounge. There was no notice of this on their website at the time of my booking. This was disappointing but it only got worse. The service was subpar, unwelcoming and impersonal. The offerings of food were alright but the atmosphere was clearly not that of an executive lounge. Also, there were too many children there for my liking. I guess I assumed that most executive lounges would be 18+. Dear child - can I please see your business card and credentials? MBA at Harvard Pre-School? Overall, booking a room for the lounge access seemed like poor value in my opinion. 

Make-shift executive lounge

Make-shift executive lounge

Highlight of the Hotel: One perk of this hotel is that they share an airport shuttle service. This isn't a common feature in Tokyo and often forces travellers to take trains or expensive taxis to the airport. For approximately $25 US, I had a one-way transfer to Narita airport. The shuttle was air-conditioned and very clean and comfortable. We were given bottles of water for the hour long journey. Considering my taxi from the airport into Tokyo was approximately $120, this was a great deal. 

Highlight of my Stay: The service that I received from the concierge desk was superb. They arranged (on short notice) dinner at a 2 Michelin Star restaurant. Their communication was quick, professional and precise. They also had tremendous follow up upon check-in. They clearly mapped out locations of stores that I wanted to visit on or near the Ginza to save me time. 

View of Tokyo Bay from my room

View of Tokyo Bay from my room

Drawbacks: Overall, the hotel lacked any personality or charm. It is a well kept property and it is fine for a stay in Tokyo. I was disappointed in the executive floors and wouldn't pay to upgrade again. If you go in expecting a top-notch business hotel and not a luxury hotel, you won't be disappointed. 

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Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills

Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills

Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills

Address: 1-23-4, Toranomon, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan, 105-0001

Telephone: +81 3 6830 1234

https://tokyo.andaz.hyatt.com

My Rating: 85%

Price Rating: $$$$$

Summary of Stay: I began my vacation at the Andaz Tokyo. I arrived in the evening after a long flight from Vancouver but was warmly welcomed by the staff. I was whisked up 50 floors to the lobby of the hotel and quickly checked-in and taken down to my room. 

View when you first walk into the room.

View when you first walk into the room.

This boutique hotel consists of 164 rooms and suites and is one of the newest 5 star hotels in Tokyo. The design is modern while paying homage to Japanese culture and design. The hotel has a tavern, rooftop bar and a small sushi restaurant. In the same building, there is also a patisserie and American style restaurant. 

Tokyo hotel rooms are infamous for being small and cramped. The Andaz View room I stayed in was anything but. From the moment you step out of the elevator and into the wide hallways, you realize space isn't an issue. The guest rooms are spacious—mine was approximately 650+ square feet. While the room is heavy with teak finishes, the bright green carpet, floor-to-ceiling windows and off-white walls balance the room to keep it bright. 

Bedroom area

Bedroom area

While many hotels claim to have views, the Andaz does not disappoint. My view of the city and Tokyo Tower was incredible. There was a sofa that ran the entire width of the room alongside the windows. At night, the Tower lit up and the spectacle continued. But not to worry, blackout shades ensured I could still get a great night sleep. 

Japanese hotels are also known for having extremely firm mattresses. The Andaz bed was the ideal mix of firm and soft and the sheets were incredibly smooth and inviting. Bedside was a master control that managed lighting, curtains, etc. 

The bathroom is also worth noting. My room had a generous walk-in shower and soaker tub. After a long flight, the soaker tub was a very nice feature to have. The sink area was set upon a long slab of polished teak—again keeping with Japanese design. The room was also equipped with a Japanese washlet toilet—it included features such as bidet washing, seat warming and dryer. Beyond the fixtures, the bathroom was well stocked with toiletries including dental kits, brush, comb, vanity kit, etc. Another nice touch was that the towels were scented with their seasonal scent. 

Tub and shower

Tub and shower

The hotel houses the AO Spa with 5 treatment rooms. Hotel guests receive complimentary access to the pool, saunas and gym. Everything was sleek and modern—and from the 37th floor, you get an amazing view of the city no matter which direction you look. There are locker room attendants handy to help show you around. On a side note, bathing caps must be worn in the pool at this hotel. Not something I had encountered before. 

Swimming pool

Swimming pool

The hotel attracts a young jet-set crowd under 40 and Andaz caters to them. I missed the complimentary happy hour where snacks and wine tastings were offered but I raided the mini-bar—everything except alcohol is complimentary. 

Highlight of the Hotel: On other reviews for this hotel, people were disappointed with the location of the hotel. I actually felt that it was an ideal central location to get to many different places. While only blocks from the Tokyo Tower, a fifteen minute walk in the other direction landed me at the Imperial Palace. Another ten minutes and I would have been on the Ginza. The neighbourhood was quiet, clean and convenient. 

Neighbourhood

Neighbourhood

Highlight of the Stay: 2 highlights from this stay. First, the view blew me away. The video and photos don't do it justice. The floor-to-ceiling panorama of the Tokyo Tower is something I'll never forget. So ensure you opt for the View room. Secondly, the bathroom was stellar. From the toiletries to the scented towels, to the heated toilet seat and the Japanese style bathtub, to the Kimono robes and polished teak counter, the bathroom was a standout. It was beautifully and functionally designed and it was joy to use. 

Enjoying my morning coffee in the hotel robe

Enjoying my morning coffee in the hotel robe

The love is in the details...

The love is in the details...

Drawbacks: There were a few failings here. I had tried to correspond with the hotel on 2 occasions via email. First time I received no reply from the concierge. Second time I received a very delayed response. I followed up to the reply in regards to arranging a driver at the airport but they did not arrange it and did not reply back to me until I was already checked into the hotel. There was more than 48 hours for them to reply and they did not. And when I was in the hotel, I asked for some information about local sights and the concierge barely tried to answer my questions. So this was unfortunate and unacceptable. On a more minor note, the bell desk was very slow with luggage both during arrival and check-out. After waiting twenty minutes in my room, I finally hauled it down to the check-out desk myself. 

Plum blossoms—just don't ask the concierge where to find them in public. 

Plum blossoms—just don't ask the concierge where to find them in public. 

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