As a member of the Design Hotels group, expect cutting-edge, contemporary features alongside almost-ancient sights
History & culture
The Gate Hotel Kaminarimon is named for its proximity to the Kaminarimon arch. And, heading under the covered vermilion curves of the hotel’s eponymity will bring you to one of Japan’s oldest shopping streets. Then, at the end of Nakamise street and its many food stalls and traditional shops, there’s Sensoji, the city’s oldest temple complete with sweeping roof and magnificent main hall. Nearby, you’ll find the pointed majesty of the Tokyo Sky Tree, Kappabashi’s kitchen street and the electronics area of Akihabara. The Asakusa metro station – just two minutes’ walk from the hotel – is there to whisk you further afield.
While Japan’s deluxe offerings tend towards the old fashioned, the Gate Hotel – in spite of its 137 rooms – has a certain contemporary, boutique feel about it. There’s a real focus on design considerations with the curved windows of its 13th floor lobby matched by the tangential sweep of its oversized sofa. In the rooms, bright artwork pops on dark charcoal walls as fashionistas will welcome the clean, modern lines of the furniture. Rooms come in a range of sizes but the most impressive are the suites whose balconies and living room look out onto the street below.
The Japanese have a tendency to take their favourite parts from other cultures and then – with intense attention for detail – improve it. Whiskey and beef are just two examples. And – in the hotel’s French bistro restaurant – you can experience evidence of a third as classic dishes benefit from immaculate presentation and new cooking techniques. Breakfast is a buffet affair with a la carte options including eggs benedict and indulgent pancakes. Tables are available inside or on the terrace.
If you’ve been doing your reading on Japanese culture you may have come across omotenashi, the Japanese word for tea-ceremony hospitality and a concept that each member of staff is fully trained in. They’re more than willing to recommend between the most authentic okonomiyaki noodle restaurant and the chintziest souvenir shop; think plastic food and mini robots. Back at the hotel, you’ll be able to enjoy the services of the 24-hour bar-with-a-view or the complimentary, high-speed internet.
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