Tokyo apartments are a great alternative to a stay in a regular hotel. If you're a fan of vacation rentals then this is definitely an option to consider. So which one is best?
It's really all a matter of preference. Let's take a look at the reasons why should you bother with apartments in Tokyo.
A stay in a Tokyo apartment rental means you have a slightly different experience than staying in a hotel or guesthouse. Basically you are self catering with this option and can come and go as you please. Another bonus to a vacation rental is there's often a little more space available than in your average Tokyo hotel room. Did we mention already that space is a serious commodity here? Lol - yes we know we did. But if you've never been here before it's hard to grasp just what me mean by this.
One of the best things about a vacation rental option is the chance to stay in a more local area. You'll still be located near to the center of the city and it's easy to get around. After all this is what most folks do every day - including us : ) But you'll also be just that little bit away from the 'hotel districts' which are definitely not regular life for the majority.
If the idea of getting closer to regular life in Tokyo appeals to you as part of your Japan vacation, then a stay in one of these Tokyo apartments (see below) is a great way to do it.
This is the bit that's hard! Even after living here since 2001, finding apartments is still a big job for us and the whole vacation rental idea hasn't really taken off here yet. There are a couple of areas in the city though where there are some good Tokyo apartments available for short term rent. Nishi Ogikubo near Shinjuku, and Shibuya are the 2 districts we're talking about.
One word of warning. Because this is still a relatively new market in Japan and options are limited, places do get booked up. If you want to make sure you get the place you want, plan ahead and get your reservation in early. Then you can get on with the rest of your planning.
Just an FYI. Apartment rentals don't mean you're suddenly going to get lots of space. In our case, our apartment we call home is around 38 square meters total so you get an idea of the size of a regular place. Apartments for rent are usually a little smaller although they're plenty big enough for a great vacation. The first apartment we lived in was 23.5 square meters - and we counted that .5! Just be sure to confirm the size of the apartment before you say yes. That way you avoid any horrible surprises!
Here's our list of apartments in Tokyo we'd want to stay in if we were on vacation in Japan. Take a look and see what you think:
Starting with 2 apartments in Nakano which is around 7 minutes from Shinjuku on the Chuo line. This gives you great access to central Tokyo but means you can take a break at the end of the day.
The next 2 apartments are in Nishi Ogikubo. You're still on the Chuo line but just a little further out from Shinjuku. It takes around 15 minutes by train.
The next 2 Tokyo apartments are near Shibuya, another great hub for getting around and seeing the sights.
5. A great apartment between Shibuya and Harajuku, just behind the Canadian Embassy.
6. This one's a funky apartment in Shinsen, very close to Shibuya station.
If you're looking for the ultimate in Tokyo apartments, this Tokyo Bay Penthouse is just the ticket!
That's it at the moment. If we hear of more apartments we'll add them to the list, or if you know of an apartment you'd recommend we'd love to hear from you : ) The email address is at the bottom.
Wouldn't you love to find a guidebook that is just for first-time visitors to Tokyo. Find those all important things that only a local would know like: what to expect at the airport, what Japanese is most useful for a traveler to know, what packing tips are specific for Tokyo, what should you do in an emergency, the basics of using the trains, and much more. Head over to Taming Tokyo today and judge for yourself.
Interested? Sign-up for our regular Tokyo News updates and get access to your free Travel Essentials planner.