We Said …
What we dig about Tokyo
Andon Ryokan, inexpensive, 011-81-33-87-38-611. Crashing for the night on a futon may remind you of your college days - this place was designed by a university architecture professor - but the experience here is purely Japanese, from the bare walls to the tatami floors. And while the sleeping arrangements may be simple, this traditional ryokan (small inn) does have some nontraditional conveniences: free Internet access and a TV and a DVD player in every room.
Hotel Claska moderate, 011-81-33-71-98-121. The hipsters converging in the Claska's lobby restaurant and rentable gallery space are indicative of the fact that this is Tokyo's first boutique hotel. Also proof is its locale in the up-and-coming Meguro district and the chic, no-two-are-alike guest rooms.
Nakamura Gen, inexpensive to moderate, 011-81-33-71-15-897. Whenever we can, we like to clue you in to some of the hidden gems the destinations we feature have to offer. And given that this small dinner spot specializing in soba-based dishes is in Room 205 of an ordinary apartment building with no sign to announce it, it certainly fits the bill. No need to thank us; it's our job.
The Oak Door, expensive to very expensive, 011-81-34-33-38-888. Like the Hotel Claska, the Oak Door signals another "first" for Tokyo - a truly world-class steak house. (Which is odd in view of Japan's renown for its Kobe beef.) It, too, boasts a trendy address (inside the $4 billion Roppongi Hills development) and a stylish clientele, who stop in for savory steaks and seafood, not to mention the top-notch wine list.
Sunshine Namjatown, 011-81-35-95-00-765. Most major cities have theme parks, so we’re not in the habit of recommending them, but Namjatown has a little something different that we just had to share with you. At the Cup Ice Museum, in the section of the park called Ice Cream City, you can sample the world’s most insane ice cream flavors. A scoop of straw or chargrilled seaweed, anyone?