The Okura Tokyo Opens Its Doors Following Four-Year Rebuilding
In a much-anticipated event and to the delight of its many followers worldwide, The Okura Tokyo, the new flagship hotel of Hotel Okura Co., Ltd, today opened its doors to the public.
The original Hotel Okura Tokyo opened in 1962 as a first-class hotel that quickly became renowned worldwide for its blending of traditional Japanese beauty with the very best in accommodation, cuisine and service. It closed its doors in August 2015, and after four years of rebuilding work, it reopened today as The Okura Tokyo.
Masaharu Naruse, President and Representative Director, Hotel Okura Tokyo Co., Ltd., said, "I'm proud to present our new flagship property, The Okura Tokyo. Fully embodying one of Okura's key philosophies—offering "the Best A.C.S.", or Accommodation, Cuisine and Services—we are committed to honoring our pedigree while endeavoring to further refine this philosophy so that the hotel will once again be treasured by people from all over the world."
The Okura Tokyo is the highest-branded property of the Hotel Okura group. It reprises the former Hotel Okura Tokyo's famed traditional Japanese beauty as well as its cherished simplicity and elegance to offer a new combination of "traditional luxury - The Okura Heritage" and "contemporary luxury - The Okura Prestige." The creation of two separate properties reflects the company's strategy to evolve its room branding into two differentiated categories.
A total of 508 luxury rooms are available in two buildings on the spacious central-Tokyo Okura property, about half of which—1.3 hectares—is covered with lush gardens and greenery. The Okura Museum of Art is also located on the property.
The smaller of the two buildings, The Okura Heritage Wing, which has its own reception, is a 75-meter, 17-story structure with refreshing views of gardens and greenery on three sides. The spacious guest rooms in The Okura Heritage Wing offer generous floor areas of 60m2 with broad 8m widths. The Okura Heritage Wing is a top-end luxury hotel with a tasteful, classically Japanese atmosphere. The beloved Yamazato Japanese restaurant is making its much-awaited return here, as is the renowned Chosho-an tea ceremony room, making the Okura Heritage Wing the perfect choice for special gatherings in elegant Japanese settings.
The larger Okura Prestige Tower is a 188-meter, 41-story structure combining premium quality accented with refined Japanese aesthetics. Guest rooms begin on the 28th floor; standard-size rooms measuring some 50m2 afford vistas of the Tokyo metropolis from expansive windows. On the top floor of The Okura Prestige Tower, guests can take in fabulous views of the city while dining at historic Sazanka, the hotel's reborn teppanyaki restaurant. Additionally, an all-day dining restaurant, Orchid, features a mix of cuisine with relaxing indoor and outdoor seating, and Toh-Ka-Lin offers delicious Chinese cuisine.
The Okura Prestige Tower is equipped with substantial banquet facilities, including one of the largest ballrooms of any hotel in Tokyo, immediately establishing The Okura Tokyo as a premier venue for prestigious international conferences. The Okura Prestige Tower will offer access to the Okura Fitness & Spa for exercise and relaxation against the backdrop of panoramic views of Tokyo on the 26th and 27th floors.
The Okura Museum of Art, originally established in 1917 as Japan's first privately operated art museum, will once again attract art lovers from the world over with a celebrated collection that includes some 2,500 works of art, among which are three National Treasures, 13 Important Cultural Properties and 44 Important Art Objects designated by the Japanese government.
Reconstruction has changed the appearance of the hotel; however, many of the ornaments which decorated the original main building now adorn The Okura Tokyo. After the end of August 2015 when the hotel ceased operations and the main lobby was tentatively closed, a one week period was secured prior to the commencement of dismantling to allow examination and measurement of the existing artefacts and decorations.
Legacy decorations from the original hotel grace the new lobby of The Okura Prestige Tower, including the distinctive hexagonal Okura Lantern ceiling lights, lacquered tables and chairs arranged like plum flowers, and the world map and clock displaying global time zones. A number of other decorations have been faithfully reproduced for the new lobby. These include the Four Petal Flowers wall tapestry, a Nishijin brocade originally designed by Japanese "human national treasure" Kenkichi Tomimoto, and shoji paper windows with Asanoha-mon leaf-pattern lattice work.
The lobbies of The Okura Prestige Tower have been designed by Yoshio Taniguchi, celebrated architect of the redesigned Museum of Modern Art in New York and son of Yoshiro Taniguchi, designer of the Hotel Okura Tokyo's famous lobby, a further nod to the Okura legacy.
Commented Yoshio Taniguchi, "The original lobby designed by my father, Yoshiro Taniguchi, was extremely popular, so I was honored to have been asked to redesign the new main lobby of the Okura Tokyo, at the same time feeling a sense of destiny and responsibility. It was a challenge to not only re-create the old main lobby but to turn it into something even more wonderful, and I hope that the new main lobby will be beloved by all guests and visitors to the Okura Tokyo for many years to come. There are various types of memorable lobbies, including those whose feel and aura have evolved over time; the new Okura Tokyo lobby is one that is reminiscent of the time of the opening of the original hotel more than half a century ago but which can similarly be expected to refresh itself over time."
The Heian Room will accommodate up to 2,000 people, making it one of Tokyo's largest ballrooms. Motifs from the Collection of Ancient and Modern Japanese Poems, a national treasure, will decorate the walls. The room will also boast a first-class audio visual system.
Small artistic displays entitled "Takumi of Japan" are located on all guest room floors of the Okura Prestige Tower, showcasing carefully selected traditional handcrafts from all 47 prefectures in Japan.
The top two guest floors of The Okura Prestige Tower—the 39th and 40th floors—comprise an unprecedented duplex suite comprising a 730-square meter living space with three bedrooms - Japan's largest hotel suite. With its two-story-ceiling living room and event-ready theater, the luxurious suite will also be an exceptional venue for one-of-a-kind meetings. Additionally, the bathroom of the master bedroom will feature a Ne-Yu bed bath and Utase-Yu waterfall bath for supreme relaxation.