4 Modern Capsule Hotels in Tokyo That Have Upped the Tiny Hotel Game

Japan has long been famed for its unique capsule hotel accommodation, but generally speaking these tiny rooms have been for practical purposes only (read: you wouldn’t really have wanted to stay in them while on vacation, other than for novelty reasons). But over the last few years, Tokyo has dramatically upped its tiny hotel game, and new hip – sometimes even “luxurious” – capsule hotels are popping up all over the city. Here are four of our favorites…

Nine Hours

THE STORY: First launched in 2009, Nine Hours now has eight locations around Japan, including at Narita Airport, and in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Sendai. They have a women’s only hotel in Kanda, and their newest property opened in Akasaka on May 10.

WHY WE LOVE THEM: Since capsule hotels are meant to offer short stays for urbanites, Nine Hours has created a design style and ambiance that encourages guests to get out and about and explore the city. Walking past their Akasaka property, you can glimpse the cute, comfy capsules through the huge glass windows, so there’s a sense of no barrier between inside and outside. And their name? It’s based on the total amount of time generally needed for the three basic actions of each guest: shower (one hour), sleep (seven hours), get dressed (one hour) = nine hours.

For more information see our Concierge listing.

First Cabin

THE STORY: Somewhere between a capsule hotel and a business hotel, First Cabin offers rooms that are a little more spacious than your average capsule accommodation. The company was founded in 2006, and has expanded to include 19 locations nationwide, with eight locations in Tokyo alone.

WHY WE LOVE THEM: The word “cabin” is the perfect term to describe the compact suites on offer. Depending on your budget and how much space you want, you can choose between four different types – First Class, Business Class, Premium Economy Class, and Premium Class. Except for the Premium Class cabins, the capsules are divided up into men’s and women’s areas, and they offer public baths, showers, powder rooms, and even a bar at some of the locations.

For more information see our Concierge listing.

The Millennials

THE STORY: Opened in Shibuya in March, this is a new take on the ubiquitous capsule hotel, and unabashedly aimed at the millennial set. They also have a branch in Kyoto.

WHY WE LOVE THEM: According to The Millennials, the future of travel means making the most of technology, design, and convenience. They offer all the convenience of a capsule’s tiny lodging style, but add a strong focus on creating social connections and using sleek design. Common areas feature a shared kitchen, dining space, bar, workspace, and even a “play zone” — all available 24 hours a day. Smartpods — that’s the name of the mini capsule rooms — use IoT technology, making your stay in this innovative hotel both comfortable and practical.

For more information see our Concierge listing.

Nadeshiko Hotel Shibuya

THE STORY: Once upon a time in Tokyo, capsule hotels were mostly for men only. Nadeshiko, which is situated in the cozy part of Shibuya called Shinsen, is one of several modern spots that are turning this trend on its head and offering accommodation for women only.

WHY WE LOVE THEM: It’s the little things that count. When you check in to your cocoon, you’ll receive a yukata, tabi socks, and some essential amenities. Head down to the public bath and enjoy recharging while gazing at the traditional-style Mt. Fuji mural, painted in pretty pink colors on the bathroom wall. They also have a bar and restaurant on site, and a comfy tatami lounge.

For more information see our Concierge listing.

 

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