First time in Tokyo and we arrived after a 13 hour flight from Toronto. Easy bus service to Shinjuku JR Terminal (West Exit) and hopped in our first Tokyo cab for a 10 minute ride to the Granbell. Lovely lobby and very friendly staff. On the fringes of Kabuchiko's "red light" district, the streets and neighbourhood are very safe to walk and there are many ramen restaurants and local taverns nearby. View of West Torkyo from our window, and very nice hotel ammenities in the bathroom. Very clean and fast serving elevators. Great roof top bar for a drink and the chance to take in the lights of Shinjuku. Found a great treelined walkway with connects hotel with Shinjuku's main avenues, without having to deal with all the video game arcades, hostess' clubs, and gentleman's massage "clubs". The "love hotels" can get to you after a few days, but one is always safe and subject to Japanese politeness.
Arrived at Narita in the late afternoon, took the Limousine Bus to Haneda before my early am departure the next day. A Japanese colleague recommended this hotel to me - I was very happy with it. Although my flight was domestic, it was easy to take the airport shuttle from the international terminal, where the hotel is located, to the domestic terminal for my flight.
Too bad that the main building of the Okura is being torn down and replaced for the Olympics. This is an older property, but it is elegant in an understated way. My only complaint is that the bar allows smoking. There is a no smoking room off the bar. I think the bar should be non-smoking entirely.
The staff are fantastic! But, the polite treatment is what one expects from upper end Japanese hotels.
Food and drink are expensive, but this is the Okura. There are plenty of other fine dining options nearby.
I highly recommend.
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