The lavish, memorable dining experience offered at Hyatt Place Tokyo Bay is no longer exclusive to hotel guests as the stylish and comfortable urban resort is inviting its neighbors – and general public – to enjoy Edo-style sushi, mouthwatering beef and inspired Japanese dishes at two of its fine dining establishments.
The first Hyatt Place in Japan opened doors in July 2019 overlooking the scenic Urayasu-shi Sogo Park located on the coast of Tokyo Bay. Calling the flourishing city of Urayasu in Chiba Prefecture home, the hotel is just four kilometers from Tokyo Disney Resort.
Offering a free shuttle bus to and from Tokyo Disney Resort, Hyatt Place Tokyo Bay is the perfect getaway for friends and family visiting from overseas, whether they are on a family vacation or in town for business.
With the theme park drawing millions of visitors from all over the world, and both this fall’s Rugby World Cup and next year’s Tokyo 2020 Olympics enticing even more, Tatsuya Nakamura, manager of the hotel’s refined restaurants Teppanyaki Fukitei and Sushi Ema, says the two restaurants are now open to the general public in order to introduce this influx of international guests to traditional Japanese cuisine.
“We want to provide all incoming foreign tourists, not just those staying at our hotel, with the opportunity to experience two emblematic styles of Japanese cuisine – sushi and teppanyaki,” says Nakamura. “Each restaurant provides a signature experience, and our chefs hand-select local Japanese produce and ingredients. We want everyone to feel the essence of true Japan, and to be able to taste every season of Japan through the dishes prepared from the chefs’ thoughtful menus.”
Matsusaka Beef at Teppanyaki Fukitei Restaurant
At Teppanyaki Fukitei diners are witness to a masterful culinary presentation by Chef Hidekazu Takahashi, who impresses guests with his in-depth knowledge of the seasonally selected ingredients and Matsusaka beef, all of which is grilled right before their eyes.
Inside the ambient teppanyaki restaurant, Chef Takahashi stands at wait behind the long grill. The immaculately polished grill, which shines like diamonds under the light, was built from two slabs of iron – one 500 kilograms, the other 300 kilograms.
Chef Takahashi’s black and tan uniform, designed by world-famous fashion designer Junko Koshino, makes the tall, lean chef with an easy smile appear as if he is ready to prepare an astounding culinary masterpiece on an intergalactic spacecraft.
During the 10-course meal Takahashi cooks for his guests, every dish, from the first plate set before diners, all the way to dessert, is crafted on the teppan grill with attention and care. From pancake and caviar to rock salt grilled abalone to roasted vegetables that Takahashi inspects and handpicks himself from local farmers on the Miura Peninsula, every ingredient is high quality, and more importantly, delicious.
The star of the show is the Matsusaka beef. One of the three “big beefs” of Japan along with Kobe and Omi beef, Matsusaka is the prized meat sourced from Japanese Black cattle raised under strict restrictions in Mie Prefecture. While customers might come for the meat, Takahashi is proud that they are satisfied to the last bite of dessert. He says the quality of beef stays the same throughout the year, while he has creative freedom to craft the dessert depending on the season, and the availability of the freshest ingredients.
“For the chef, teppanyaki is not about the performance in front of the customers. The spirit of teppanyaki is the ability to delicately cook fine ingredients and provide our guests with high-quality and delicious food prepared properly,” says Takahashi. “The most engaging part of the teppanyaki experience is the interaction with customers, and the relationship we are able to share. Preparing a satisfying meal and creating an atmosphere where the client feels content is the most rewarding.”
Edo-style Cuisine at Sushi Ema Restaurant
Just down the hall on Hyatt Place Tokyo Bay’s first floor, the long, smooth counter at Sushi Ema is carved from a single block of unvarnished Japanese cypress, the same wood that Japanese craftsmen have used for more than a thousand years to build elaborate temples, and the same wood revered by sushi chefs for its durability and antibacterial properties. From the low intimate ceiling to the washi paper-covered shoji windows you would find in a traditional Japanese tearoom, every corner of the sushi restaurant embodies peace and calm.
It is within this serene setting that guests receive a special reception and dining experience from Sushi Ema’s master chef. Edomae-style sushi dates back hundreds of years when the rapidly growing city of Tokyo, then known as Edo, began cultivating its own culinary traditions, and the new style of sushi spread throughout Japan. Following this longstanding tradition, the chefs at Sushi Ema serve specialty dishes using the freshest premium-quality seafood sourced from local markets.
As the ingredients depend on the day’s freshest catch, every meal served at Sushi Ema is a unique experience, and every dish is customized to meet each customer’s personal taste. Nakamura, the restaurant’s manager, says the chefs form the sushi rice with a special house-made vinegar that develops a taste so fine that dipping the sushi in soy sauce, as is customary, is not necessary.
“You can enjoy the fresh, natural taste of the ingredients,” says Nakamura. “Our experienced chefs are able to communicate with our guests from all over the world through their ability to prepare and share food. Our chefs treasure the time they spend with their customers, and this is the special kind of experience we are excited to provide.”
Hyatt Place Tokyo Bay’s welcome invitation to everyone to enjoy the select hospitality and fine dining opportunities is one that should be embraced with open arms.
Hyatt Place Tokyo Bay
Address: 5-8-23, Akemi, Urayasu-shi, Chiba
Access: Take the Keiyo line to Shin-Urayasu Station, then a taxi for six minutes
Hotel: 047-305-1234 Sushi Ema: 047-305-8881 Teppanyaki Fukitei: 047-305-8882
Photographs by Andrew Goldie