Tokyu Plaza Harakado in Harajuku (Spring, 2024)
The Tokyo Plaza in Harajuku with the mirror entrance and a rooftop garden has long been a beloved cool spot in the neighborhood. Just opposite, on the same crossing, a new Tokyu building mirroring it has been under construction, scheduled to open to the public in spring. The building named Harakado takes its name from its location — “hara” for Harajuku and “kado” for corner in Japanese. Between the two Tokyu buildings with mirror facades and rooftop gardens, there’s the much-loved Laforet Harajuku too.
Aside from shopping and dining facilities, Harakado will also host an art gallery, a magazine library and a free space for digital creators to gather and create content.
Toritsu Meiji Park Next to the Japan National Stadium (January 2024)
Partially opened in October 2023, the Toritsu Meiji Park will fully open at the start of 2024 featuring commercial buildings with cafés and restaurants
Most importantly, however, the park has several open spaces, including the approximately 1,000 m² lawn area named “Kibou no Hiroba” (translates to Hope Square), the 7,500 m² forest area called “Pride no Mori” (meaning Forest of Pride), “Michi Hiroba” and the “Inclusive Plaza.” Michi Hiroba has a water stream inspired by the Shibuya River, while the Pride no Mori boasts over 700 trees at the moment, with plans to grow and expand. The goal is to create a public green space open to all, a park that will stay as a Tokyo legacy for future generations.
New teamLab Museum in Azabudai Hills (February 2024)
While teamLab Planets remains in Toyosu, a new museum is opening on February 9, 2024, in Azabudai Hills, the recently opened urban complex. It will contain a mix of new and old teamLab works. Two of the new works — “Bubble Universe: Physical Light, Bubbles of Light, Wobbling Light, and Environmental Light” and “Flowers and People – Megalith Crystal Formation (work in progress)” — have already been previewed by media.
In addition to the new teamLab works, the museum will also feature other works from years gone by such as the “Universe of Water Particles on a Rock where People Gather” from teamLab Borderless Museum. Other works to look forward to are: “The Sculpture of Time Distortion in a Mirror,” “Chromatic Light Wall,” “Ice Nucleus of Life, Nucleus of Life,” and more.
Tickets available from January 16, 2024.
To see more of the November 20 preview, take a look at TW’s Instagram video.
Toyosu Senkyaku Banrai Complex next to Toyosu Market (February 2024)
The outer area of Toyosu Market (where the Tsukiji fish market moved) is growing rapidly and the Toyosu Senkyaku Banrai complex is the newest and biggest development, a joint venture between the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and the Manyo Club. Toyosu Senkyaku Banrai consists of several areas, including shops, restaurants and spa.
The Toyosu Outer Edomae Market area is a commercial facility housed in a building that recreates traditional Japanese architecture. There will be many restaurants on the first floor, while the second floor will create a yokocho (drinking alley) area and an Edo period-esque ambience. The third floor will be entirely dedicated to sushi with many restaurants to choose from.
Tokyo Toyosu Manyo Club housed in a modern nine-story building will be a 24-hour hot spring facility where you can enjoy an open-air bath with a view of Tokyo Bay. The water will be sourced from Hakone-Yugawara. There will also be a footbath garden that doubles as an observation deck with a 360-degree panoramic view of the waterfront.
Immersive Fort Tokyo in Odaiba (March 2024)
The news of the closure of the quirky Venus Fort in Odaiba (and closing teamLab Borderless in it) were received with sadness by many Tokyoites. The mall was full of entertainment and its design mimicking a vaguely southern European city had theme-park-like qualities. Thankfully, the building will be reborn with more of that theme-park playful vibe in March 2024 under the name Immersive Fort Tokyo. It will retain Venus Fort’s European charm and will take fantasy further by dedicating itself to fun immersive experiences.
Spanning approximately 30,000 square meters, Immersive Fort Tokyo will be one of the largest completely indoor theme parks in Japan. It will have 12 types of attractions as well as six merchandise stores and numerous restaurants. Some of the already-announced immersive experiences are a Sherlock Holmes murder mystery where you join to solve the case, and a Jack the Ripper horror maze where you try to escape the notorious London murderer. Anime fans can look forward to immersive games in the world of Tokyo Revengers where you are caught up in gang fight, as well as Oshi no Ko where you work to help create an idol performance. From the “Hansel and Gretel” story to an R-rated “Edo Oiran” immersive theater attraction, there will be something for everyone.
Shibuya Sakura Stage in Shibuya (July, 2024)
As part of the major redevelopment of Shibuya, a new complex will open near Sakuragaoka, an area that leads to Daikanyama and Ebisu. Shibuya Sakura Stage boasts commercial facilities (over 100 stores), medical facilities and the only residential building in the central Shibuya Station area. Technically, construction was completed on November 30, 2023, but the grand opening is planned for July 26, 2024, when most stores will open.
Shibuya Sakura Stage will be high-tech, with LED screens showing blooming sakura during all seasons. Its exterior has been called “kinetic facade” and it will also utilize new technology. This new building complex will welcome community gatherings with several public spaces named “stages.” At the entrance to Shibuya Station, there will be the Tokimeki Stage, which is a large atrium that connects each floor with stairs, escalators and elevators as the main flow route. The Nigiwai Stage, located at the center, will have performances day and night. Hugkumi Stage will be an outdoor plaza, a green haven with real soil, fruit trees and vegetable gardens and a large wild cherry tree that is the symbol of the area.
PokéPark Kanto to be Established in Yomiuriland (dates TBA)
In mid-December 2023, Pokémon announced that a new treat for fans of the franchise is coming to Tokyo. It will be called PokéPark Kanto and it will be located on the premises of the Yomiuriland amusement park in the Tama area of the capital. There hasn’t been much more information and at the time of writing we don’t know the planned opening month, nor the specific attraction.
We do know, however, that the park will be welcoming to all Pokémon fans worldwide with the company’s statement reading “We’ll be creating a space where Pokémon fans from the world over can gather among the rich bounties of nature and enjoy the Pokémon experience together, beyond any boundaries of language, region, or culture.”
New Hotels in Tokyo
Mercure Tokyo Hibiya Hotel
Located in the elegant Hibiya area, Mercure Tokyo Hibiya’s design took inspiration from the rich film culture of the area. From the beautiful lighting, to movie-inspired sculptures and room numbers designed to look like film reels, the whole hotel captivates with its aesthetic. The restaurant La Scène, located on the basement floor with plenty of natural light, offers delectable French cuisine using Japanese ingredients. Mercure Tokyo Hibiya opened on December 19, 2023. The brand also opened a hotel in Haneda Airport a few weeks prior.
Hotel Toranomon Hills
Hotel Toranomon Hills is the first hotel in Tokyo under Hyatt’s independent collection brand, Unbound Collection by Hyatt, and it opened its doors on December 6, 2023, in Toranomon Hills. Its location offers ultimate convenience and comfort, with a 24/7 lounge for guests. Outside visitors are welcome to patronize the café and restaurant too. Le Pristine Tokyo is supervised by Michelin star-winning Dutch chef Sergio Herman and it will offer contemporary European cuisine. You can also try a variety of cocktails made with the original Le Pristine spirit