Did you know that Tokyo is one of the most populated cities in the world? Seriously this place is gigantic and therefore has so many hotels to choose from. You could spend hours trying to figure out which one to pick
During our last trip to Japan, Gary and I stayed at four different hotels in totally different areas of Tokyo. Each one was special in its own way. But I would argue that Shiba Park Hotel offers the best value for money. Not only are the rooms gigantic for Japanese standards, but the hotel is also ideally located if you are planning to visit Tokyo Tower, all the staff members were very friendly and Shiba Park Hotel even has a cultural learning centre.
If you are planning a trip to Tokyo and are undecided on where to stay, then keep reading!
A LITTLE BIT ABOUT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
Shiba Park Hotel first opened its doors to customers in 1948. From the outset the hotel’s intention was to make their guests feel relaxed and as if they are staying in someone’s home.
The hotel is actually made up of two separate buildings that share the same lobby. The new annexe across the road (Shiba Park Hotel 151) was constructed in 2016 making it super modern and sparkly clean.
Most of the hotel rooms have twin beds and can accommodate a maximum of four guests, making this hotel particularly suitable for young families.
Keeping their international visitors in mind the hotel also features a Japanese cultural salon, where guests can learn more about Japanese culture and art. Personally, I think this is the hotel’s most unique and attractive attribute.
LOCATION OF SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
Shiba Park Hotel is located in the quiet neighbourhood of Shibadaimon, just a hop and a skip away from the iconic Tokyo Tower! Both the Zojo-Ji Temple and Atago Shrine are also situated nearby and we visited all three attractions on our first day back in Tokyo.
Although Shiba Park Hotel’s proximity to Tokyo’s tower might be attractive, when you visit Tokyo, it is super important to pick your hotel based on its accessibility to the rest of the city. The attractions of Tokyo are scattered all over the metropole, so most hotels will be relatively close to one or two of them. But you really want to make sure that you can easily reach Tokyo’s public transport, otherwise, you are going to waste a lot of time.
Shiba Park Hotel is located just down the street from two subway stations ( Onarimon Station and Daimon Station) and one JR/railway station (Hamamatschucho Station). This was super convenient and meant that we could easily get to almost every main tourist hotspot (Shibuya, Shinjuku, Asakusa, etc.) without walking very far or having to switch lines. It also took us less than 30 mins to reach Shiba Park Hotek from Haneda International Airport with the monorail. Furthermore, the hotel staff at Shiba Park Hotel were very helpful in getting us to where we needed to go. We just asked them for a map and they would happily explain to us what the easiest way was to reach a particular tourist attraction.
Another criteria that Gary and I look out for when we choose a hotel in Tokyo, is whether there is a convenience store nearby. Eating out in Japan can get expensive but you can easily cut down the cost of your trip by grabbing your breakfast, lunch or dessert from a local 7/11. Furthermore, Gray and I are somewhat addicted to Japanese sweets, fizzy drinks and cakes, so we like to ensure that we can easily pop next door for a quick snack. Shiba Park Hotel is surrounded by convenient stores and there’s one right next to the hotel. You’ll also find various curry, ramen shops, drug stores and izakaya joints nearby.
FACILITIES AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
Shiba Park Hotel has all the amenities you could possibly hope for.
In the lobby of the hotel you will find a bowl of sweets, a beautiful Feng Shui water feature, and comfy sofas to rest tired feet. There is also an umbrella stand, from which guests can borrow a free umbrella on rainy days. Or if you brought your own, and the weather happens to be sunny, you can leave it in the umbrella locker.
There is a laundry room on the second floor of the new annexe of Shiba Park Hotel. It only costs 300 yen per washing cycle and 100 yen per drying cycle to do your own laundry. To be fair this is fairly typical for hotels in Japan, but nonetheless how convenient is that?
You’ll find several vending machines for drinks and ice machines on several floors of the hotel.
Finally, although smoking is not permitted in the hotel, Shiba Park Hotel does have a smoking room just next to the entrance lobby for smokers.
ATMOSPHERE AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
When it comes to hospitality, the Japanese really have it down to a tee. Just spend a couple of hours in Japan and you will immediately notice how polite and helpful everyone is. Nonetheless, the service and friendliness of the staff at Shiba Park Hotel really stood out among the rest.
We were made to feel welcome from the moment we stepped foot in the door right until we were waved off from the pavement as we left. The warm nature of the staff was infectious and all members of the team were a delight to speak to.
Not only did the staff help us organize transport, activities and suggest great places to eat. every morning as we walked through the reception, we were pleasantly greeted, and staff often took the time to chat with us to see how our day was going and what we had planned.
One little detail, that I noticed, was that all members of staff at Shiba Park Hotel carried personalised business cards that they readily hand out to guests. Aside from a cartoon picture, each card also expresses a fun fact about the staff member too. This was such a nice personal touch.
CHECK-IN AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
After a 13-hour flight, we arrived at Haneda Airport just before midnight and caught the last monorail. Needless to say, we were both really exhausted and I was somewhat worried, we might have trouble checking in. It turns out I didn’t need to be.
We were quickly ushered through the doors into the entrance lobby. A beautiful globe marked the centre of the room.
The check-in process was really fast and we were given information. Then, in no time, we were whisked with all of our luggage upstairs to our room, where we were greeted with a gift of origami cranes and sweets. Thankful for a comfy bed we quickly fell asleep.
OUR ROOM AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
Shiba Park hotel has several types of rooms to suit both couples and families. They all feature the same contemporary Japanese design with small Western details.
Throughout our visit, Gary and I stayed in a comfort twin room, with Hollywood twin style beds.
Now, hotel rooms in Japan tend to be very compact and are certainly smaller than the ones you will find in the West. So, we were really surprised by the spacious size (30sqm) of our room at Shiba Park Hotel and the two enormous beds. It was marvellous to be able to store our luggage on the baggage rack in the entrance hallway (and not have it clog up the space).
Our twin room featured a large working desk, two chairs and a little dresser. Like most Japanese hotels, there were plenty of additional amenities too: pyjamas, toothbrushes, toothpaste, face soap, a refrigerator, a kettle, charging stations, as well as complimentary fast and reliable Wi-Fi. We just can’t stand hotels that charge extra for decent internet access. It was therefore great to see that Shiba Park hotel understands how to do it right! Now, we wouldn’t be English if we didn’t make ourselves a large cup of tea. So, we were delighted when we realised that our room not only had a tea and coffee facility, but also Scottish shortbread treats!
The guest rooms at Shiba Park Hotel are chic and modern, yet comfortable and cozy. The decor incorporates traditional Japanese colors, such as mustard yellow and ochre red. A timber sliding door separates the bedroom from the entrance hall and bathroom area,
The bathroom was actually pretty large for Japanese standards. It had a large sink and a bathtub that doubled up as a shower. The complimentary shampoo and bath soap was-quality stuff. And the hotel changed the towels, floor mat, tissues and toilet paper every single day. Definitely a 5-star service for a 3 or 4-star hotel.
The toilet had its own separate room, which was great when we were getting ready in the morning. The toilet itself had all the typical Japanese contraptions (a heated seat and buttons for music, front/back wash, pressure, dry and flush).
BREAKFAST AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
Our stay at Shiba Park hotel included a western style breakfast on all four mornings.
Whilst in Japan, we would usually grab breakfast at the local 7/11. This saved us a lot of money and time (and I would recommend this to anyone on a budget). That being said, it really was great to start the day off with a big complimentary breakfast in the hotel. This made our morning completely fuss-free and put us in the best of moods, ready to face the rest of the day.
Breakfast was served in the Old City Grill House, Shiba Park Hotel’s very own restaurant, right beside the entrance lobby.
Guests who opt to have breakfast can order eggs freshly cooked in a multitude of ways from a menu or serve themselves to the unlimited buffet. The buffet featured mainly western style dishes, such as fresh bread, bagels, pastries, pancakes, waffles, fresh and dried fruit, cereal, fried rice, pasta, hot chips, nuggets, bacon, cheese and smoked salmon.
An alternative option for breakfast is a traditional Japanese breakfast set. You just need to remember to order it from reception the night before. It is so interesting to try all the different flavours and it is definitely worth having at least once during your stay.
A LESSON IN FUROSHIKI AT SHIBA PARK HOTEL TOKYO
The most unique thing about Shiba Park Hotel are the cultural classes they offer in their Sakura Lounge. It is a great way to get to know the country more intrinsically. You can choose between a whole set of workshops, from making onigiri (rice ball) to calligraphy, ceramics painting, a matcha ceremony and a sake tasting.
So, on our second day in Japan, we started the morning off with a Furoshiki workshop. Furoshiki is the Japanese art of wrapping items in fabric. It is used to transport clothes, gifts, or other goods.
The workshop lasted for about an hour. And I must say we highly underestimated the skill and patience involved in making these extraordinary designs. Taking our Japanese style fabric, Yuka, who was an expert at Furoshiki, showed us the ropes and trust us, it’s definitely harder than it looks! A couple of hours and several metal boxes later, we managed to recreate some of the designs.
We thoroughly enjoyed our four nights at Shiba Park Hotel 151. The staff made us feel right at home! And we really appreciated the attention the hotel paid to details, from the free umbrellas to the origami cranes that were left in our room as a present.
The hotel was perfect for us as a couple. But I also believe that it would be well suited to families with younger children. The large room means you can all stay in the same room.
Have you ever tried Furoshiki?
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