Shangri-La was coined by British Author James Hilton in his 1933 novel Lost Horizon and has come to symbolize paradise on earth – the Tokyo version of the Shangri-La Hotel comes pretty close to that description. Upon entering the enchanted palace, guests are greeted by more than 2,000 pieces of art, over 50 stunning crystal chandeliers, and a host of services and amenities found only in the highest end of hotels. First class all the way with a price point to match, the Shangri-La is paradise found.
You should download the hotel’s proprietary app. Once it’s loaded, you’ll be able to use any one of your phone’s messaging services (WhatsApp, Facebook, Line, etc.) to get assistance from the hotel – and they guarantee an answer within 3-minutes.
Rooms are bathed in earthy tones of brown and beige and have incredible views from the daybeds set against the large windows. Complimentary amenities include Nespresso coffee machines, tea, water, and snacks.
If you opt to pay extra for a club level room, you’ll receive a boat load of free benefits. Not only do you get free breakfast, but multiple meal services all day, afternoon tea, evening cocktails, a pocket Wi-Fi device, and complimentary pressing service.
Peek-a-boo bathrooms are not for the shy at heart, but there’s a curtain in case you need privacy. The lux lavatories include massive rain showers, giant soaking tubs, and come with L’Occitane products. Club level and suites are outfitted with Bulgari.
The lavish lobby has marble floors, beautiful art pieces and a stunning crystal chandelier in the shape of a wedding dress. In the lobby lounge, guests will find an excellent afternoon tea and live piano music on Wednesdays.
Open from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., the stunning indoor heated lap pool has expansive city views and a locker room with saunas (sauna and steam for women), rain forest showers, and giant Japanese-style baths.
Chi spa has a Tibetan mountain motif and provides luxurious treatments from massages and facials to body scrubs, wraps, and energy work.
The gym is open 24/7, has hardwood floors, Life Fitness and Technogym machines, and provides guests with an ample supply of water and apples.
Take your workout outside. The hotel has complimentary BMW bicycles that are first-come-first-serve for all guests.
Less is more at Shangri-La with only two – but exceptional – restaurants. Piacere is the hotel’s Italian outlet open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and has perfect pasta. You’ll also find a tapas bar in the back of the restaurant that is a more casual eatery. The other dining spot is at Nadaman where chefs prepare unique Japanese cuisine with only the finest ingredients.
On the ground floor, you’ll find Boutique by Shangri-La, the hotel’s lovely pastry shop with freshly baked goods.
The hotel sits in the Marunouchi Financial District and is within walking distance of great restaurants, bars, and shopping areas. Tokyo Station is also connected directly under the hotel so you can hop on the subway to other parts of the city.
Head inside Tokyo Station and follow the directions to Ramen Street (4-minute walk). In the underbelly of the subway, there are dozens of steaming hot ramen spots worth trying. For something on the nicer side, head over to Sant Pau (9-minute walk) a two Michelin star Spanish restaurant where three hour meals are standard.
Whiskey lovers might want to head to the Tokyo Station Hotel where Oak Bar (4-minute walk) is famous for its rare selections. The Lounge by Aman (8-minute walk) is a craft cocktail spot where the bartenders use all Japanese ingredients.
WHY WE LIKE IT
High-end all the way, the Shangri-La is known around the world for its incredible dedication to service and this iteration is no let down. While there are few dining and drinking options compared to other 5-star competitors, what it does have is sumptuous and savory. The spa, gym, and pool are all stunning and the artwork throughout the hotel gives off the impression you’re staying in a lavish museum. Fans of the brand and lovers of nice things generally will feel at home here.