Hen-na Hotel and Other New Hotel Openings in Japan
Catch up on the latest Japanese hotel news, from the newest Hen-na Hotel's robot drop-in clinic and family-friendly hotels at Legoland and USJ to five new Tokyu Hotels planned by 2020.
Latest Hen-na Hotel Features Robot Drop-in Clinic
Hen-na Hotel Tokyo Hamamatsu, the newest addition to the Hen-na Hotel family, the Japanese brand of hotels that is famously staffed almost entirely by robots, has gone one step further by adding a drop-in clinic staffed by cyborgs, where patients can receive medical advice and treatment from robots.
The [AI] Robo Clinic is a real-life medical clinic attached to the hotel where a variety of service robots work, booking in patients at reception, making medical appointments, and offering medical advice on everyday conditions such as hay fever, constipation, and skin rashes. As unusual holiday experiences go, a session at the clinic comes with an considerable price tag - there is a ¥5,000 (£33) registration fee for first-time patients and treatment costs range from ¥25,000-30,000 per month (£167-200) - assuming, of course, that you’re willing to go back...
The clinic’s name ‘AI’ is a pun on the term ‘artificial intelligence’ (AI) and the Japanese word for ‘love’ (ai, 愛), however those who harbour lingering doubts about the goodwill of the clinic’s robotic staff toward mankind will be relieved to learn that there are also a number of human medical staff on hand to support the robots - should they need it.
Universal Studios Japan to Open New Hotel in July
Osaka-based theme park Universal Studios Japan (USJ) will open up a seventh official hotel at the park this summer. Hotel Universal Port Vita is set to open on 15 July 2018 and will feature interior decor that is fun, colourful and quirky, just like Osaka!
Located just beyond the wharf in a port city, and grounded on land yet close to the sea, the hotel has been designed in the image of the sun, and is intended to be a place where guests can bask in nature and receive ‘the blessings of the sun, light, water and the wind’ - whatever that means. With 428 guest rooms, the hotel will have a bright, light sun-themed entrance and lobby, guest rooms providing a unique and special experience, and a buffet restaurant incorporating nature motifs such as fruit.
After passing through ‘curtains of downpouring light’, guests entering the hotel lobby will encounter a fiery ‘objet representation of the sun’ that changes its appearance over time. Guest rooms on the fourth through eleventh floors will offer 14 different room styles, including maisonettes and rooms with bunk-beds, each overflowing with personality and style. Meanwhile, the 367-seater restaurant on the third floor will include a buffet corner and an open kitchen with a stone oven serving freshly baked pizzas.
Online reservations are now being accepted via the hotel’s website www.hoteluniversalport.jp/vita/ and telephone reservations will be accepted from early June on +81 6 6460 8000.
Legoland Hotel Now Open, Discounts from 6 May to 29 June
Packed with Lego awesome-ness and catering to a multitude of guests with different needs, the Legoland Hotel is the ultimate sleepover and staycation destination for unforgettable family holidays in Japan. Guests staying at the hotel automatically receive a variety of exclusive benefits, including a second day at the park for free, a choice of Lego themed guest rooms, each with its own treasure hunt, Lego Castle and Water themed indoor play areas for the kids, creative workshops with Master Model Builders, and full buffet breakfast.
Family guest rooms include two separate sleeping areas, with a queen-sized bed for the grown-ups and a dedicated area for the little ones, complete with bunk beds and their own TV. The rooms are designed to spark the imagination as guests enter a world of swashbuckling pirates, brave knights, or powerful pharaohs, with a choice of Pirate, Kingdom, Adventure, Lego Ninjago, and Lego Friends themed rooms.
Kids are sure to love the dining options in the hotel's Bricks Family Restaurant. Open daily for breakfast and dinner, it offers all-you-can-eat buffet options for all the family - and best of all, kids under 2 years old eat free! Meanwhile, the hotel’s Skyline Bar offers a welcome sanctuary for parents after the kids have been tucked up at night, serving appetizers, dinner menu, and alcohol beverages against the backdrop of the Lego skyline.
Book an overnight stay at the hotel from 6 May to 29 June and save up to 30%! Save up to ¥12,000 (£80) based on 2 adults and 2 children staying in a themed room, including breakfast and park entry tickets. The park has some closing days in June - see the park’s operating calendar for more details.
Tokyo Bay Tokyu Hotel to Open in May 2018
Tokyu Hotels will open five new hotels this year, starting with Tokyo Bay Tokyu Hotel, set to open in May 2018, and followed by further openings in Tokyo, Osaka, and Yokohama.
Located in the Shin-Urayasu / Tokyo Bay area with great access to the Tokyo Disney resorts, Tokyo Bay Tokyu Hotel will have a total of 638 guest rooms boasting contemporary interior designs and sea views. This urban resort hotel enables guests to enjoy panoramic views of Tokyo Bay from a variety of different rooms suitable for families and groups.
Guest rooms will belong to one of four poetic themes: ‘Akane’ rooms on the Deluxe Floor will be sunset themed inside and out, featuring innovative design touches such as sunset-themed decor, cloud trail-patterned carpets, indirect lighting, and stand-alone washstand and tub. ‘Kaze’ rooms on the High Floor Superior will reflect the calm of ocean breezes, with elegantly appointed rooms featuring carefully considered design touches such as soft curves, a gentle colour palette, sandy beach-patterned carpets, and translucent curtains.
On the Superior Floor, there will be ‘Umi’ rooms themed on sea and sunlight and ‘Nagi’ rooms themed on the quiet moment in between gusts of ocean breezes. ‘Umi’ rooms will feature two-tone colours of yellow and blue, creating a bright and active impression, while ‘Nagi’ rooms will feature warm wallpaper accents and rippling wave-patterned carpets.
The hotel will also have three unique themed rooms. In the ‘Submarine’ room, guests will be able to immerse themselves in the splendour and mystery of the deep sea, with royal blue and silver decor calling to mind submarine port windows and undersea tunnels. ‘Princess’ will offer guests the chance to enact their fantasy of living in a fairytale castle, with a pastel pink and white colour scheme, lace-canopied bed, and pink velvet sofa and heart-shaped cushions. And ‘Wonderland’ will offer families with small children a fun, functional and safe space to play and stay, with bright and colourful decor, partitioned living and sleeping areas, and kid-friendly additions such as beanbag chairs and holes in the wall to climb through.
Four More New Tokyu Hotels to Open by 2020
Shibuya Stream Excel Hotel Tokyu will open in Shibuya Stream, a brand new office complex for creative workers in the Japanese capital, in autumn this year. This boutique hotel with 180 rooms is poised to become the centre of a new Shibuya culture that will provide a comfortable base for both domestic and international guests.
Further ahead, 2019 will see the opening of Osaka Excel Hotel Tokyu (TBC), benefiting from a prime location in the Midosuji neighbourhood in the heart of Osaka. Located in a newly built high-rise compound and with 360 guest rooms, it will be the first Excel brand hotel in the Kansai region in western central Japan.
Meanwhile, Yokohama Minatomirai Tokyu REI Hotel, set to open in spring 2020, will offer convenient accommodation for music fans and business travellers alike. Located near Yokohama in an area clustered with global headquarters and R&D firms, it will be housed inside the same complex facility as the new KT Zepp Yokohama live music venue, making it the ideal base for concert-goers as well as business travellers with meetings nearby.