Strolling amidst the throng of commuters at Tokyo station, one can truly appreciate Tokyo’s status as the world’s largest city. A stone’s throw away from the station in a towering skyscraper is the Shangri-La Tokyo, a luxurious haven perched above the urban chaos. Here guests are welcomed into a world of lavish opulence, art, and serenity – the latter being one of the pillars of the Shangri-La chain.
A stone’s throw was not an exaggeration when discussing Tokyo station. The nearest entrance is a 1 minute walk away but do make use of the complimentary “Meet and Greet” service if you arriving for the first time. The interior of the station is vast and one wrong turn may leave you wandering for an hour. The Marunouchi financial district, the historic Nihonbashi area, and the Imperial Palace are all within walking distance.
The interior of the Shangri-La presents an eclectic mix of ultra modern technology, understated furniture in gold and brown tones, and extravagant artwork. In total, the hotel features 2000 works of art including over 50 chandeliers. The pièce de rèsistance is a magnificent 10-meter long chandelier custom made in the Czech Republic consisting of over 1000 hand-blown crystal icicles and 480,000 crystal beads. As in all Shangri-La hotels the elegant décor and the sense of space create a feeling of homeliness – a sanctuary away from it all, of course, this is helped by arriving back to the familiar scent of their signature perfume, which swathes the corridors.
Rooms at the Shangri-La are some of the biggest in Tokyo, an important point when space is the hottest commodity in the city. All the rooms boast floor length windows showing a stunning view of Tokyo’s skyline. Guests of the Presidential Suite can even sit in their private Jacuzzi bath and watch the world go by from their vantage point 36 floors up.
If you ever do manage to tire from the view one can enjoy entertainment on the 42-inch flat screen complete with Bose sound system, and of course, most importantly, the Wi-Fi is fast and free.
The Shangri-La Tokyo features two main dining options, Piacere which serves contemporary Italian cuisine, and Nadaman, an authentic Japanese Restaurant. Most of the food is locally sourced through a new initiative named “Going to the Source”. This idea started by Chef Andrea Ferrero, involved him carrying out an extensive nationwide search every year looking for organic farms with produce he can add to his menus.
The CHI spa attracts guests and locals alike for its specialised facials and body treatments. The treatment menu draws inspiration from traditional Japanese therapies some of which can only be found in Tokyo.
The Horizon Club is another facility that those accustomed to the Shangri-La chain may recognize. Guests staying in the Horizon Club rooms may enjoy champagne cocktails and canapés or afternoon tea with a view over the city from the 37th floor.
It goes without saying that such luxury comes with a hefty price tag so the question is not if the hotel is nice or not, because of course it is stunning, but if it is worth the expense. After a two night stay this reviewer gives a definite thumbs up, the location, the artwork, the spacious rooms, and the new age technology all make for an incredible stay, one that I would love to repeat sometime soon.