I like hotels that remind me I’m really staying in the city. You may think I’m stating the obvious, but how many of you can say you’ve really experienced the city after spending a night in a hotel there? Usually, you enter a hotel from the street through the front door and reach a rather secluded lobby where you check in. You ride in a box as the elevator takes you up, walk down a dimly-lit corridor, open the door to your room and pass through the narrow space in front of the bathroom before finally reaching the space you’ll spend the night in. Enveloped in many layers, the room is so isolated that you find yourself separated from the city of Tokyo, and I think you must be aware only that you’re staying in a certain hotel brand.
I always feel that this must be really boring forthe traveler. So, what we wanted to create here was a hotel where guests would experience the uniqueness of the city.
The hotel’s design brings Tokyo’s layered streets directly into the building. Every flight of stairs, which directly connects each floor with the city, has a different design, just like stairs in hilly cities like Nagasaki and Onomichi. The stairways lead to a loggia-like open-air hallway where breezes can blow through. Every room is directly accessed from this Tokyo rojialleyway-like hall. The rooms include this engawa-like access from the hallway and a doma entryway, both reminiscent of a ryokan traditional inn, making them novel, contemporary yet Japanese. By opening the shoji screens and sliding doors, you can revel in the cityscape of the Ikebukuro district spreading out below, and find your wanderlust fulfilled.
I’ve heard that a traveler is called “a wandering bird (wandervogel)” in German.
I hope you will relax and sleep in this hotel is if it were a perch in a city you’re flying over, nestled in the city’s embrace. - Masahiro Harada, Founder and Architect, Mount Fuji Architects Studio