Note: I’ve included a few photos from my previous stay at the Park Hyatt Tokyo, along with a few movie stills for illustrative purposes.
Sitting on top of Shinjuku Park Tower, the Park Hyatt Tokyo was the first western luxury hotel to open in Japan in 1994. Since then, numerous celebrities have called the Park Hyatt home.
Director Sofia Coppola loved the hotel so much that she made it a centerpiece in her award winning film “Lost in Translation”.
Rooms at the Park Hyatt Tokyo don’t run cheap, with rates during the peak Cherry Blossom season starting at a staggering $1,000 a night.
Instead I used 30,000 Hyatt Points to book a one night stay for my dad and me at this iconic hotel, with no additional cash payment required.
Upon arriving at Shinjuku station, we took a quick five minute taxi ride to the entrance of the hotel, where a check in assistant was waiting for us.
After taking our luggage and confirming our reservation, we were personally escorted up to the check in area located on the 41st floor.
On the way up, we passed through the lower lobby and up the elevator which subtly adjusts the brightness depending on which direction your heading. Naturally, the lighting increases as you go higher.
Upon arriving on the 41st floor, we walked past the Girandole restaurant and also the hotel’s library before arriving at the check in desk.
After a brief stop at the check in desk, we were handed off to another associate who personally took us to our room.
Instead of mere plastic keycards, guests are given physical Tiffany metal keys.
As a Globalist member, our room was upgraded to a deluxe view room, which was greatly appreciated given the peak demand.
The bedroom was extremely spacious for Japanese standards with the two twin beds closer to full size. A pair of lounging chairs compliment the room, along with a separate work desk.
Unlike the Park Suite, the room doesn’t have unsightly bars lining the window and blocking your view. The views are breathtaking, with the sea of buildings looking like small pieces of Lego.
The bedroom itself could almost pass for Charlotte’s room, with an almost identical interior design.
The twin beds were quite large (near full size), and my dad was able to see the beautiful skyline from his bed and literally fall asleep among the city lights.
A sliding door separates the bedroom from the bathroom, which keeps the same elegant checker patterned marbled floor found in the Park Suite.
The bathroom has a gorgeous sunken tub, and when you’re feeling lazy in your tub, there’s a small TV for your viewing pleasure.
Behind the bathroom is a separate wardrobe area. If you’re feeling like recreating some of that “Lost In Translation” magic, you can don your own pair of green robes featured in the movie and create your own Bill Murray poster!
After taking a quick shower, my dad and I headed to the peak bar, located at the main lobby, where Globalists have free flow drinks and snacks from 5-8 p.m.
The Park Hyatt Tokyo does things differently, and this was no ordinary cocktail hour. While the complimentary hors d’oeuvres were not that filling, the hotel has two bartenders on call to make any cocktail that you desire.
Having travel hopped throughout Japan for the past 10 days, it was finally time to “let loose” and properly celebrate my dad’s 60th birthday. Over the next couple hours, my dad and I fully utilized the free flowing alcohol, ordering various cocktails such as Martinis, Mojitos, and even a Mint Julep.
Tip: Be sure to come real early if you want to grab the handful of seats at the bar that offer you a spectacular view of the Tokyo skyline, otherwise you’ll have to make do one of the numerous plush seating options throughout the lobby.
Overall, this was by far the best cocktail hour at any Hyatt I’ve ever been to, and at 4,000 Yen for the general public (plus service charge and tax), it’s one of the better free flowing deals in notoriously expensive Tokyo.
Afterwards, we headed upstairs to the world famous New York Bar located on top of the Park Hyatt.
For those who’ve watched “Lost In Translation”, this one of the focal shooting areas of the film and we were really excited to finally able to see the bar in real life.
On a previous visit I actually took a quick look at the New York Grill during the daytime, and can say without a doubt if you’re looking to have a meal with a view that this is one of the best places in Tokyo, especially during the twilight hours.
The restaurant is modern, but simple, with minimal distractions and letting the view speak for itself.
I did like the two huge paintings by Valerio Adami flanking each wall on the grille, which contrasted well with the layout.
Upon arriving at the 52nd floor, we were greeted with a rather long line despite the 3,000 yen cover charge for non-hotel guests. The hostess apologized profusely and asked for our room details, and promised to give us a call when a table freed up. Around 10 minutes later, a window table had opened up and we headed back upstairs.
To say the wait was worth it would be an understatement. It’s not often you can experience a movie scene in real life, but the atmosphere at the New York Bar was even better than what was portrayed on film.
Just like the movie, a live jazz band was the focal point of the bar, with tables crammed to maximize space. In the background, flashing red lights on top of the many skyscrapers in Shinjuku glowed like fireflies in the distance.
We were seated on a gorgeous table with unobstructed views of the Shinjuku skyline, right next to the couch where Charlotte first toasted Bob. My dad wasted no time in grabbing a picture.
We started off with a round of L.I.T cocktails, which were apparently inspired by the color of Charlotte’s panties. This was followed by a glass of Suntory whiskey. Unknown to me, that single glass cost a whopping 3,000+ Yen, so make sure you take a close look at the price list!
Since we were at the New York Bar & Grill, naturally we had to try the New York Steak, which was extremely juicy and tender, although price conscious travelers might be shocked at the price tag.
For those on a budget, truffle fries are a good option to fill your stomach without breaking the bank.
Service was excellent, and yes the waiters and bartenders have the exact same uniforms as shown on screen. As expected, the jazz was wonderful and the atmosphere exactly how I imagined it would be, with muddled voices occasionally interrupted by clapping after the completion of a song.
At the back of the bar is the infamous long bar table where Charlotte and Bob first talk.
As the night wound down, and the jazz music lingered in the air, one can’t help recreate a little movie magic. Found in Japan.
This post was originally published on TopMiles.com