JAPAN Inspiration Gallery 11 Japan
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Okura Tokyo
Tokyo

Opened in 1962 with the 1964 Japan Olympics in mind, the Okura has hosted a long line of movie stars and dignitaries including every American president since Nixon. Since the Tokyu Capitol was redeveloped a few years ago, the Okura is now the only hotel remaining in Tokyo from that era. But with the 2020 Olympics on the horizon, it has sadly been earmarked for replacement by a modern glass tower.

Now is the time to experience the hushed tones of its main lobby area and the famous beaten-copper tables of the Orchid Bar replicated in drinking establishments throughout the world. The hotel is a treasure trove of period pieces such as its map of time zones and the mural by the artist Tomimoto. Staff still wear kimonos, and subtle 'ikebana' flower arrangements change seasonally and complement the soft woods of the interior. The rooms do show their age, but this is part of the Okura's charm in a city that seems obsessed with constant innovation and redevelopment. It is located in the otherwise quiet Embassy area of Toranomon, but is an easy taxi ride away from any of the key areas like Shinjuku, Roppongi and Ginza. The newer luxury hotels in Tokyo may be more familiar and immediately satisfying, but the Okura retains the charm of the Cary Grant movie 'Walk Don't Run' filmed here in 1966.

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The first condition of understanding a foreign country is to smell it.
Rudyard Kipling

Client Testimonials

Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
I would recommend Ampersand without any hesitation!!! The best travel agent that I’ve ever had dealings with. Everything – from the individual care and attention in helping to plan the trip, through to the efficiency of the agents on the ground in India – was handled brilliantly. An absolutely first-class service all round.
- Matthew Annable, Rajasthan, India
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
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- Mr David Wallace, North India

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