Tokyo. How would you define it? On the surface you’ve got the captivating cliches: skyscrapers and salarymen, sushi and sumo. But what lies beneath resists any fixed label. Tokyo is magnetic, cryptic, dazzling and incredibly diverse. A centerless city, every neighborhood bears its own individual identity in an urban jigsaw of limitless pieces that somehow fit together.
So when it comes to finding a place to stay, a place that reflects the revolving, dynamic landscape you’ve traveled here to immerse yourself in, how do you choose?
Grids Hotel + Hostel
Grids is a hotel and hostel that’s as bold as the city it’s located in, offering travelers an authentic, value-for-money experience in Japan that fits with their lifestyle. The core concept is hybridity — it combines hostel-level prices with hotel-level service in a functional space that blends modern graphic design with traditional Japanese flair.
Inside, sleeping areas flow from the ’60s-inspired décor of the futuristic capsule dorms to the minimalist private en suite bathrooms, to the Melbourne café vibe in the downstairs common lounge and reception area. Shared bathrooms are sleek, simple and spotless. Beds are meticulously made. The low-lit, slate-floored corridors give you the impression that you’re inside a chic spaceship.
Different rooms match different kinds of travelers; from your own capsule to a cozy double room to a brightly-lit washitsu (Japanese-style room) overlooking the river. Bookings can be made in English, Chinese, Korean — even Alien. Staff members here are also multilingual (though the level of their alien communication ability remains top secret).
Grids Hotel + Hostel is much like Tokyo; a connection of jigsaw puzzle pieces that together reveal a bigger picture — an original type of accommodation in the city that transcends constraints of space, concept and convention.
Right now the Grids brand has two locations in Tokyo within a ten-minute walk of each other: Grids Nihombashi East and Grids Akihabara. There are three more hotel and hostels about to open: one in Sapporo, Hokkaido, in June, another Tokyo location in Asakusabashi in autumn, and a Grids Kyoto in February 2018.
Grids Nihombashi East is where you can get a feel for traditional Japan. Built around the famous Nihom-bashi (lit. Japan bridge), the area was the place to be seen trading your wares during the Edo period. A three-minute walk from Higashi-nihombashi station and 80 minutes from Narita airport, the hotel and hostel sits right in the central area between Akihabara, Asakusa, Otemachi and Ginza — providing great access to anywhere in the city. All you have to do is choose your direction.
Grids Akihabara — a six-minute walk from Akihabara station — transports travelers to Tokyo’s “Electric Town.” Here, you’ll get a mind-altering dosage of modern Japan complete with bright lights, maid cafes and gamer culture. Though influenced by the noise and neon of its surroundings, the hotel and hostel is a breathing space, situated just outside of the chaos on a picturesque residential street overlooking the Kanda River. Apart from Akihabara, you can easily access Asakusa, the Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo Skytree and the sumo district of Ryogoku.
Rooms + Rates
Comfort and functionality are central to Grids’ design; everything from the bed frame to the mattress to the lighting has been carefully selected to augment relaxation.
Room types vary from simple capsule beds to entire private rooms. Prices start from ¥3,000 per person, per night. Some rooms include a private ensuite. All come with free Wi-Fi.
Currently, the downstairs common lounge at each Grids Hotel + Hostel is hosting the innovative Japanese café chain Streamer Coffee Company.
The coffee lounge is open to the public, which means that guests can talk to locals and vice versa. Here, Grids Hotel + Hostel has set out to create a creative hub where travelers can make genuine connections with the community — augmenting their experience of Japan and offering new ways to journey through it.
If you’re in search of something different for your stay in Tokyo; a place that defies labels and that connects you to the real Japan — this might just be it.