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Keith1010

Private Vehicle Recommendations - NRT to Tokyo

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Keith,

Having previously lived in Tokyo for seven years, a possible hotel suggestion would be the Palace Hotel ( originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright), located across from the imperial palace and centrally located to the Ginza area. As others have mentioned I too had used the limousine bus to commute to and from NRT, the bus will drop you off at the front door of the Palace ( as well as most top hotels). Buses leave every 30 minutes, cost 3,200 yen pp, travel time 1hour.

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Denver united thank you so much for the Hotel and transportation recommendations and Observer my thanks for the transportation recommendation.

 

Hotels are now starting to accept reservations and show pricing for the dates we are interested in so we are trying to either finalize our selection or at least narrow it down to a couple of them.  We will work on the flights once they are open for booking but I've been doing the research based on earlier dates.  Once we get hotel and flights locked the next step will be transportation.  From there we'll start looking at restaurants.  This is one of the aspects I love about travel which is the research and planning and I so appreciate everyone's help.

 

Keith

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Keith---when I was there in May of this year I stayed at the Imperial Hotel.  I really enjoyed it.  Also, I hired a private, Engilsh speaking guide who used to live in the States for a walking tour of Tokyo.  If you want his name, send me an email and I will send it.  I had your email but can't find it at the moment.  May have been lost when I bought new PC.  I took a regular taxi from the airport to the hotel.  Julia

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Julia, thank you so much and I just saw your e-mail.  You are very kind.  Thank you again.

 

Keith

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Thought just occurred to me. Keith are you guys doing the Olympics next year in Tokyo ?    The timing seems right and since you have “never” needed to ask a cruise related question I just was wondering. The facilities under construction seemed fabulous. 

If so I hope it will be on your blog

 

Edited by ctjon

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Hi Jonathan...Our plan is to be in Tokyo for a pre cruise stay before boarding a Crystal Cruise.  We won't be there for the Olympics because we will be on board a different Crystal Cruise a few weeks before arriving to Tokyo.  I do wish the

timing might have worked out as we have never been to the Olympics and as you say the facilities under construction look wonderful.

 

Keith

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After now spending four nights in Tokyo I would never ever  suggest the Palace.  My hotel is closer to the  gardens  and Ginza.  They offer a rolls  to airport

 or from.   Door to,door service to port  and BACK. Need something it is done. All my check outs are at two. 

 

The Chinese lunch is great. But go to the Tapas Bar at he MO for dinner. A year out book now. Would go back tomorrow, 

 

today was fiah market, two shrines,  Tokyo 2020  store and dinner. What a great=day 

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2 hours ago, ellbon said:

After now spending four nights in Tokyo I would never ever  suggest the Palace.  My hotel is closer to the  gardens  and Ginza.  They offer a rolls  to airport

 or from.   Door to,door service to port  and BACK. Need something it is done. All my check outs are at two. 

What hotel is the one you are recommending?

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2 hours ago, SusieQft said:

What hotel is the one you are recommending?

 

I can hardly wait....

Looks like a great hotel - if only we knew the name

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SusieQft, I realize she didn't mention the name, but Elbon is talking about the Peninsula.

 

Keith

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The Peninsula in Tokyo is phenomenal, I think it's the best hotel in the city.  It's in the heart of Ginza and in some rooms, there's a view of the Imperial Gardens.  The standard rooms are some of the best anywhere in the world, almost all like mini-suites with a sitting area, table and chairs, dressing room/closet, and a huge bathroom.  The room is well thought out, for the daily paper in the morning, they have a box in the closet, they can access it from the hallway side, and you access it from the room, no need to open the door in a robe to get it.  Service is impeccable, which is what you would expect from a Peninsula.  There is only one weakness in my mind, which is the downstairs lobby/restaurant.  It's just in the middle and there.  It doesn't make any sense whatsoever.

 

And the Peninsula will do the pre-arranged taxis from the airport, which work really well.

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14 minutes ago, Paulatmich said:

The Peninsula in Tokyo is phenomenal, I think it's the best hotel in the city....

 

And the Peninsula will do the pre-arranged taxis from the airport, which work really well.

 

I’m curious what you are comparing it with? What would rate as close to it in Tokyo? The nice thing is there are many great luxury hotels in Tokyo - so location is often the deciding factor 

 

Arranging a car or taxi to / from the airport that pretty much any half decent hotel will organise for their guests 

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32 minutes ago, Stickman1990 said:

 

I’m curious what you are comparing it with? What would rate as close to it in Tokyo? The nice thing is there are many great luxury hotels in Tokyo - so location is often the deciding factor 

 

Arranging a car or taxi to / from the airport that pretty much any half decent hotel will organise for their guests 

 

I'm comparing it to the Ritz Carlton, Four Seasons, Grand Hyatt Roppongi, and the Mandarin Oriental.  The Aman is also a special hotel, but, from a value perspective, the Peninsula far outweighs the very slight benefit of the Aman.

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Paulatmich....After doing a lot of research a key point that hit home from previous input is what Stickman1990 said and that is location.  Now location like most tings are in the eye of the beholder based on their interests, etc.

 

As I am narrowing down my list in addition to location I am getting input when I can from people who have stayed at the properties we are looking at.  This has been helpful.

 

Maybe it's me but the prices I am looking at for Peninsula Hotel "value" is not something that I would attribute to this property.  But if you are comparing it to one other hotel maybe value is a good description. I have looked at dozens of hotels but not The Arman.   If I was comparing it to say the Four Seasons I would not use the term value.

 

Anyway, having been to Tokyo on business my focus is location and finding the type of accommodation we prefer without spending a ridiculous amount.  After all, dinner may end up costing as much as the Hotel at some restaurants.  LOL.

 

Keith

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2 hours ago, Paulatmich said:

T  There is only one weakness in my mind, which is the downstairs lobby/restaurant.  It's just in the middle and there.  It doesn't make any sense whatsoever.

 

And the Peninsula will do the pre-arranged taxis from the airport, which work really well.

Yes the location of the restaurant is what someone mentioned to me as a downside by people we know.

 

I have inquired at hotels we are considering and they will all arrange transportation for us so I don't think that gives an up to Peninsula as the others do that.

 

I do agree that the location appears to be excellent. A big plus.

 

One of my challenges right now is two weeks ago I could get pricing for rooms one week prior to our visit.  Each day I checked and I could get the following day.  So I figured wait a week and Ill be able to get pricing for our stay.

 

Time passes and I check and it says no rooms.  I try for another day or two but then it shows no rooms for the preceding few weeks even though it had them before.

 

So I call reservations to ask if it is really no rooms or is it that they aren't allowing reservations at this time.  He checks and says no reservations at this time and probably not for a few months.

 

I left it at that but I wanted to say then why only two weeks ago you showed pricing for the dates that you now say no pricing is available (if we were staying during that time frame we could have booked it) and now pricing won't be available for a few months.

 

So I will book one or two other properties and then revisit this but it seemed odd.  Not odd because I couldn't get the dates yet but odd based on what had happened.

 

As they say, time will tell and the good news is time is on our side.

 

Keith

 

 

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1 hour ago, Keith1010 said:

Paulatmich....After doing a lot of research a key point that hit home from previous input is what Stickman1990 said and that is location.  Now location like most tings are in the eye of the beholder based on their interests, etc.

 

As I am narrowing down my list in addition to location I am getting input when I can from people who have stayed at the properties we are looking at.  This has been helpful.

 

Maybe it's me but the prices I am looking at for Peninsula Hotel "value" is not something that I would attribute to this property.  But if you are comparing it to one other hotel maybe value is a good description. I have looked at dozens of hotels but not The Arman.   If I was comparing it to say the Four Seasons I would not use the term value.

 

Anyway, having been to Tokyo on business my focus is location and finding the type of accommodation we prefer without spending a ridiculous amount.  After all, dinner may end up costing as much as the Hotel at some restaurants.  LOL.

 

Keith

 

You make a good point.  Nobody would consider any of those properties to be "value."  For me, all of the hotels are generally in the same class, but the Aman and Peninsula are a slight step up.  Now, if I am pricing the hotels and the RC is JPY50000 a night and the Peninsula is JPY90000 a night, to me, the Ritz Carlton is a better value.  I'm not getting enough benefit out of the Peninsula to outweigh the extra JPY40000.  From my previous stays, the Aman was generally JPY25000-50000 more than the Peninsula, so to me, there was no "value" in staying there versus the Peninsula, which I thought was just about as good.

 

And it's likely the meal will cost you more than the hotel.  Depending on your preferences and what type of meal you would want, I would suggest RyuGin, which I'd classify as seasonal Kaiseki, and is definitely a memorable meal, or Jiro, which is obviously the well known sushi spot, but I think excellent.  Jiro is an experience in terms of the atmosphere and cuisine, but it's a relatively short meal compared to other places.  Sushi Saito is another, but nearly impossible to get a reservation.  The only way I was able to get in there was because I was dining with a very senior executive at one of the large Japanese banks. 

 

One other benefit of the Peninsula is that their concierge seems more capable of getting reservations at these spots, I found the Ritz Carlton concierge very unhelpful in this area.

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We stayed for 2 nights at the Peninsula in May after a cruise that ended in Tokyo on the Symphony. I agree with Paulatmich that the Peninsula has very generous size rooms and the service is very good but the lobby area restaurant and the very lacklustre bar for an evening drink (on a high level floor but sort of in an adjacent tower and not operated by Peninsula I think although I could be wrong) were reasons that I would not stay here again. The public spaces in the hotel were very suboptimal - this might not be important for some but it is to us. If money were no object I would stay at the Aman for sure - I am big fan of their properties but they can be eye waveringly expensive.

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4 hours ago, Keith1010 said:

.So I call reservations to ask if it is really no rooms or is it that they aren't allowing reservations at this time.  He checks and says no reservations at this time and probably not for a few months.

 

I left it at that but I wanted to say then why only two weeks ago you showed pricing for the dates that you now say no pricing is available (if we were staying during that time frame we could have booked it) and now pricing won't be available for a few months.

 

Ha - so Japanese 

 

Remember they will avoid saying no - so you get some very perplexing answers that you have to read between the lines 

 

Unless you’re going to be there at the time of an event like the Olympics you will be ok getting a reservation but they don’t open up their systems as early as we’re used to in the west. Having said that it’s best to get in early as I have seen times when the luxury hotels all book out in advance, so it can happen 

 

Patience Grasshopper (apologies to Mr Miyagi)

 

 

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Yes, a good reminder that the culture avoids saying no.  

 

A favorite movie of mine.  Many important lessons from the movie.  

 

At first I wondered if it was an event as there is one other major event when we were there but I am thinking what they say is correct and I agree with you Terry that many of the hotels have much shorter windows for reservations than we are accustomed to.

 

Funny about some of their hotels.  We won't do it but I had considered staying at Disney for a couple of days and that hotel I think you could only reserve three or four months in advance which is a big difference from the USA when you can reserve one year or more.  

 

Keith

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I think you should look into Hoshinoya hotel.  I haven't been there yet, but I heard really nice things about it.  If you are only going to be in Tokyo for a few days, this will definitely give you more of a traditional Japanese experience in a way that is more accessible to most of us here in the US.

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On 9/18/2019 at 2:15 PM, Keith1010 said:

SusieQft, I realize she didn't mention the name, but Elbon is talking about the Peninsula.

 

Keith

I am sorry that I did not get back to you. Since leaving Tokyo I have been in Osaka. Plus port change due to weather.

yes and yes to the Peninsula. The service beats any hotel I stayed in . I used  their  car service. Greeted outside and taken to my room. Credit card etc was done in room.  A tour of room and about fifty buttons for lights , a special door door for valet service . The list goes on.

 

check out is at noon and I stayed in room until after lunch. Went off came back and while I was checking our bags brought downstairs.  Also they sent for a cost a bellman who got me as far as he could go  to terminal which was check in.

 

again book the  Tapas Bar at the MO for dinner 

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I had breakfast twice in the lobby. That was fine. Lunch was ok . But if in hotel Peters is good for drinks and view. The MO location is not good to walk anywhere.  But dinner on the 38th floor was great. The views lovely.

 

i was comparing hotels  like Raffles in Singapore and Cambodia or FS in Sydney . 

 

In general I book 11 months out. I have been known to book two hotels then I pick one with in six months out.

Edited by ellbon

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I strongly recommend taking the Narita express in their premium cabin. Part of the experience of visiting Tokyo is seeing the expansive scenery and watching the transition from Japanese countryside to sprawling metropolis. You won't get those views from a car. The cabin is spacious and comfortable and feels very private. Trains leave very frequently so you won't be waiting long, and car hires are absurdly expensive. 

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Thank you all again for your input.

 

We plan to book the private vehicle transfers through the hotel once we finalize the hotel.  

 

Well, the person from Peninsula Reservations was wrong about pricing not being available for a few months.  When he told me that it didn't make sense as a few weeks ago I was seeing pricing up until a few days before our desired check in date so what he told me was counter intuitive.  For what we desire the pricing is really high so we will see.  

 

I might make two or three reservations and take a couple of months to think them through as well as watch the pricing to see after I make the reservations if they go down.  

 

I think between the input we have received about hotel and location from some of you on this board and off-line coupled with other sources from Trip Advisor to a few other sites and also from doing searches on CC on other boards we will come up with a hotel.  There are certainly several out there to consider.

 

As I've mentioned one of the things I love about travel is the planning so this makes it fun and I am must glad that we have begun to plan travel again.

 

Many thanks.

 

Keith

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