Tokyo hotel fit for royalty

There are many luxury hotels in Tokyo and we have stayed in most of them. In this post, we write about what makes the Palace Hotel Tokyo different from other top luxury hotels in Japan. One of the most important factors is its excellent location right next to the Imperial Palace.


Hotel views don’t get any better than the view I had at the Palace Hotel Tokyo. There I was on a clear winter afternoon doing my laps in the swimming pool of the Palace Hotel and I could see the Imperial Palace each time I went up for air.

It was quite surreal, but I quickly got used to the amazing scenery from the hotel. From my private balcony on the top floor, for instance, I gazed out onto the roofs of the main buildings inside the palace grounds. Yes, the Palace Hotel Tokyo is  the only hotel in central Tokyo offering rooms with terraces that actually open to fresh air and proper outdoor seating areas.


Then, there’s the location of the hotel. This truly beats every other hotel if you’re a history buff. Every day, I took my pick for a scenic walk around the Imperial Palace. 

I could either walk across the ancient bridge over the palace moat right next to the hotel. Or I could cross the street and enter the gardens of the Imperial Palace through an access gate at the doorstep of the hotel that few tourists are aware of.

If you decide on the latter, you’re in for a pleasant stroll through the most uncrowded greenery possible in the center of one of the largest and most dynamic cities in the world. On this walk, you’ll see the original wooden guard houses and even one of the four remaining stone watchtowers.


The Imperial Palace is also accessible from several other luxury hotels in Tokyo, but these are all on the outer perimeters. Then there’s the famous circular jogging route around it that every fitness buff who lands in Japan with running shoes in his or her luggage must do to tick this experience off their bucket list.


However, it’s only the Palace Hotel Tokyo that can really claim access to these hallowed grounds – and not just because of the views. The jogging route around the Imperial Palace is mostly along a public sidewalk. But setting foot in the gardens qualifies as a proper entry into a domain most people only view from the outside. This makes all the difference.


Being right next to the official home of the Emperor of Japan, the Palace Hotel Tokyo also has an atmosphere of genteel elegance unequaled by other hotels. One feels this instantly, upon walking through the doors and being greeted by the hotel staff.

They’ve obviously trained via decades of service since the hotel itself was reconstructed on the site of an old hotel of the same name. Yes, the original Palace Hotel Tokyo was one of the most prestigious hotels in Japan.

In Tokyo just for three days, I chose the Palace Hotel for these two factors, as well as for its minimalist and spacious rooms that are easy on the eyes and its excellent restaurants.

Crown Restaurant, the Western-style fine dining venue, serves exquisite meals that are meant to long be remembered. Meanwhile Tatsumi, its intimate six-seater tempura bar, is simply unparalleled. Plus, it’s just wonderful to just take the elevator down to have meals in these temples of dining.

There are many luxury hotels in Tokyo. But there is no better place to call home in Tokyo when you’re living a Travelife, than this hotel fit for an emperor and right next to his offical home.