Howdy there! And Happy 2014! We rang in the New Year in Tokyo, and are still suffering from some serious Japan withdrawal.
New Year’s in Japan is a different experience from anywhere else in the world; it’s a sacred time, when most families group together and take a long break from work. Many shops and restaurants shut down over the entire period, and nearly all museums and public parks close. It was a bit of an inconvenience, and meant that we had to rethink our itinerary, but it was insightful to witness Tokyo during this quiet time.
Last time we were in Tokyo, we stayed on the outskirts of Shinjuku; this time we, we paid a bit extra to be right in the center of glamorous Ginza.
After our incredibly comfortable stay at the Hotel Monterey La Soeur in Osaka, we decided to stay with them again in Tokyo, and we weren’t disappointed! If you’re planning a trip to Japan, I can’t recommend this hotel enough. The hotel is situated right in the heart of Ginza, no more than a ten minute walk from Tokyo station.
This funky, green building was right across the street from the hotel, it looked like it could’ve been plucked right outta NYC. The ground floor was occupied by an antiques dealer, while all of the upper levels were apartments.
We also spotted this antique on the street leading down to the hotel!
The area was still covered in fairy lights from Christmas; everything was so magical and sparkly.
Ginza’s a pretty swanky area, with loads of designer shops, expensive boutiques, and Parisian cafes.
Just check out this huge, glittering snake wound around the Bulgari building!
Ginza’s also home to the Ginza Lion, Sapporo’s own German-themed gastropub, where you can get super fresh Sapporo on tap.
The German theme is really over the top, with old German anthems playing over the sound system, a wide selection of sausage platters, and even Japanese barmaids dressed in lederhosen.