You could easily be overwhelmed while searching for the best five-star in Tokyo. There are plenty of luxurious big name hotel brands in Japan’s capital city. But if you’re looking for a stylish, ultra-sophisticated Japanese hotel with excellent service – then, Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho is the one. It’s a member of The Luxury Collection, alongside stunning Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis properties.
The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho Review
The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho pulls out all the stops in terms of luxury, yet remains tasteful. This modern hotel in Tokyo is elegant, housing sweeping metal sculptures that hang from the ceiling in reception and delicate glass statues displayed in cases along the hallway. While walking through the luxury hotel, you’ll notice the air is performed – with its signature ‘Le Chemin’ scent, created by Byredo. The nightly rate is steep, even compared to other five-star hotels in Tokyo, but the facilities, rooms, service and cuisine are exceptional. If you have the budget to indulge, you won’t regret a stay here.
J and I couldn’t have picked a better Tokyo hotel to kick off our very belated honeymoon.
Tokyo isn’t just built up with skyscrapers; the Japanese metropolis also sprawls out, so you’ll have to do a fair bit of traveling to see all of the sites, no matter where you stay. The Prince Gallery Tokyo hotel is set in an upscale financial district, great for nearby shopping and nice restaurants. Happily, the hotel sits in between Tokyo station, where most travellers arrive, and the Shibuya district. It is also surrounded by the wards and districts of Shinjuku, Bunkyo, Minato, Chuo (home to Ginza) and Taito – where we took our nihon buyo Japanese dance class with Grandma Shizuko in Minowa.
You can walk from the hotel to the Akasaka-Mitsuke station, which sits on the Ginza line and Marunouchi line. Otherwise, the hotel is linked to Nagatacho station, which sits on the Namboku line, Hanzomon line and Yurakucho line. This means you can easily jump on 5 out of 9 of the Tokyo Metro lines (not including the more expensive Toei lines). Travelers can also hop off at Yurakucho line’s Kojimachi station, which is a five-minute walk from the hotel.
Service & Facilities: 10/10
The front desk staff at Prince Gallery Hotel Kioicho is exceptionally polite and attentive. Even before our stay began, they kindly answered questions about attractions and local restaurants via email; and although we arrived before our room was ready they ushered us into an open conference room so we could change our clothes and sort our belongings, packing a day bag for the afternoon and leaving our other personal items at the hotel until our official check in.
The waiters and hosts in Washouku Souten and the All-Day Dining OASIS GARDEN were equally pleasant. We never felt rushed; and in the Club Lounge, attendants kept the area very clean by quickly clearing plates and bottles. We stuck to public transportation during our Tokyo trip, but there was also an ever-present group of doormen at street level, hailing cabs for travellers and helping them with their luggage.
Tokyo’s Prince Gallery hotel also has a gym with cardio equipment and free weights, as well as a spa area for guests 18 and older. (Please note: guests with visible tattoos may be refused entrance.) The refined SWISS PERFECTION SPA KIOI has a lovely indoor lap pool, with enormous windows overlooking the city, and a hot tub on the side. These facilities are open for all guests to share.
However, there are additional single-sex spa facilities, where the Japanese custom is to bathe nude. The spacious and well-supplied shower and seating area are what you’d expect to find at a high-end spa, supplied with their signature Byredo ‘Le Chemin’ toiletries.
The Club Lounge is home to snacks like rice crackers, mixed nuts, olives and a sundried tomato salad. The fridges are well stocked with Coca-Cola, soda water, bottled water, tea, ginger ale and pulpy Italian Yoga juices. The beer selection includes Guinness, Heineken, Kirin, Asahi and Yebisu – and there are a few small bottles of Japanese sake, too.
The lounge is pretty crowded during happy hour, as guests from Club-level rooms appear for alcohol: Bombay Sappphire, Maker’s Mark, Chivas Regal, Kahlua, Absolut Vodka and bubbles on ice. The seating area is comfy – with enviable day beds – but the day beds in the guestrooms are just as nice… So unless you’re desperate to grab a few drinks and nibbles, you’ll probably prefer the glorious city views from the privacy of your room.
Although space in Tokyo is hard to come by, you’d never realize how precious it is when staying at the Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho. We stayed in a Club Deluxe Room, which felt more like a modern suite with its gorgeous dining set neatly tucked into cupboards, a sitting area, a sweet little ‘day bed’ perched in the ginormous, floor-to-ceiling windows and a large bathroom area with a separate tub and shower.
When the concierge shows you to the room, they will introduce all of the different room settings, which can be controlled with the in-room iPad. You can toggle lights on and off, adjust the curtains, change the temperature and immediately frost the (normally transparent) glass that surrounds the bathroom area. You’ll also find a pair of cute, colorful robes for lounging around on the comfy bed – along with a pair of white pajamas and two pairs of slippers.
If you’d rather soak in a private tub than head to the spa, the tub is plenty big and the hotel provides luxurious toiletries, produced by Byredo. Plus, the hotel staff even leaves nicely scented bath salts and a loofah-like cloth for exfoliation. Talk about an urban retreat.
Food & Drink: 10/10
Tokyo has no shortage of restaurants with delicious food, but the hotel itself serves some extraordinary cuisine. Our reservation included breakfast, so we tried the buffet breakfast at their All-Day Dining OASIS GARDEN. It includes one made-to-order item; the truffle egg dish was delicious, but there are other options – such as an egg paired with foie gras. The actual buffet was beautifully set out with typical Asian breakfast dishes, platters of meats and cheeses, stacks of pastries, mini pancakes, yoghurt, fresh fruit and tiny desserts. The variety could easily keep guests satisfied for multiple days.
The Prince Gallery Tokyo Kioicho also serves an exquisite traditional Japanese breakfast. Served in their Japanese restaurant, Washouku Souten, the meal arrives on an impressive multi-tired platter, following a drink and a tea. You’ll find mini pickled vegetables, dried fish and a sour plum to accompany a bowl of white rice. There’s also a warming cup of miso soup and a lovely broth with noodles and a crab claw. Then, the ‘main’ breakfast course is a sizable piece of salmon, served alongside two slices of fishcake, a prawn tail and green beans. This traditional Japanese breakfast in Tokyo finishes with a fresh slice of melon and a second drink of choice. Breakfast here will leave your taste buds delighted and easily fuel your morning adventures.
Sure, you’ve got to shell out for premium amenities, facilities and service – but this Prince Gallery hotel in Tokyo definitely delivers on all accounts. Our reservation included breakfast, as well as access to the Club Lounge, which were nice add-ons; but our value score is based on the room only. Even without the additional perks, the glamorous experience (superb service, immaculate rooms and a luxe spa) makes this hotel one of the best places to stay in Tokyo.
- Seriously, try the hotel’s traditional Japanese breakfast, with its delightful little dishes, at least once.
- If you want the spa to yourself, go late and savour the peace – it’s very quiet an hour before they close.
- Convinced on the spa? There’s no reason to wear your robe from the room to the SWISS PERFECTION SPA KIOI. The front desk will hand you a white one, and you’ll feel a little silly turning up in the pink or blue one. (In case you can’t tell, I was guilty of this.)
Have you been lucky enough to stay at this Prince Gallery Hotel in Tokyo? What was your favorite part of your stay? Let us know in the comments below!