How to experience Tokyo like a local

07 Dec 2018 in In immersion

At Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka, you’ll see the city like never before.

cover

The old couple on the other side of the counter are serving up some of the crispest, freshest and fullest-flavoured tempura you’ve ever tasted.

tempura

As they chop, batter and fry vegetables and fish in front of you, they cheerfully tell you about their 40-year old business, about their traditional cooking methods, about the local area of Otsuka in the north of Tokyo.

Their restaurant is homely and extremely small. There’s barely room for 15 people and the menu is entirely in Japanese.

japanese-food

This is authentic Japan, old-fashioned hospitality from another era, the kind of evening few tourists ever get to experience. And this is exactly what you can expect when you stay at Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka.

Insider knowledge

Launched earlier in 2018, the OMO brand offers an original concept: discover the city as only locals know it.

How?

By opening hotels in lesser-known urban areas and tapping into the knowledge of neighbourhood experts.

map

omo-map

Situated just a 15-minute walk from the bustle of Ikebukuro, Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka is at the heart of Otsuka, an area that is little-known even to most Tokyoites. It’s one of the city’s best-kept secrets – and during your stay, you’ll get a chance to discover it thanks to the hotel’s local guides.

omo-ranger-green

This is a place of narrow streets lined with small izakaya, sake joints and specialist restaurants. It’s home to one of Tokyo’s two remaining tram lines, which you can see from the hotel.

tokyo-tramway

And, unlike Tokyo’s traffic-filled centre, the area is calm and full of old-worldly charm.

Yet the capital’s hyper-modernity is never far away: the high-speed Yamanote line is just a 2-minute walk from Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka, and the hotel itself is the epitome of modernist Japanese design.

OMO5-Tokyo-Otsuka

As a bonus, it’s eminently affordable.

Social space

When you step out of the elevator into the fourth-floor reception area, you immediately have a feeling of space and urban cool.

omo5-lobby

The reception is in the middle of an area dedicated to meeting, chatting, eating and drinking. There’s a café-bar (where breakfast is served), a large area filled with expansive low couches, and a dining/working area centred around an enormous wooden table.

OMO5-tokyo-otsuka-hotel

OMO5-bar

Plus a window-side counter that’s perfect for people-watching. It’s all open plan, with a few bookshelves creating subtle separations.

Functional, cosy, comfortable

Your room is Japanese minimalism at its best thanks to high ceilings, big panoramic windows and a studiously uncluttered décor.

tokyo-hotel

The design is based on a yagura, a traditional wooden tower with the bed located on an upper mezzanine level accessible via a few steps.

Hoshino-Resorts-OMO5-Tokyo-Otsuka-Yagura-Room

Underneath is a large, low sofa adorned with multiple cushions. Storage is provided under the steps, a modern twist on the box staircases used in the Edo Period.

OMO5-room

The contemporary vibe of the room is perfectly married with touches of classic Japan: tatami mats on the floor, a deep bathtub in the bathroom, and, of course, a Toto toilet.

OMO Ranger experience

The originality of OMO is not just its off-the-beaten-track location, but also its local guides known as OMO Rangers, who will take you places you would probably never dare to go.

best-spots-in-tokyo

Entering a local sake bar or a tiny restaurant can be intimidating if the menu is only in Japanese and there are no other foreigners inside. But this is precisely what awaits you with the 5 Ranger experiences at Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka.

For a guided tour of the Otsuka neighbourhood, sign up with OMO Ranger Green. You’ll get tips on the best places to eat, shop and sightsee.

omo-green-b2

The other OMO Rangers are all about sampling the local dining and nightlife, with groups limited to just 4 people.

isakaya-tokyo

omo-green-b

With OMO Red, you’re in for a sake bar crawl, stopping off at small drinking dens such as Yodare, which offers sake from all over Japan.

night-life-rangers

Or how about sampling some of the area’s traditional Showa-style eateries with OMO Yellow? You’ll stop for tastings in tiny family-run restaurants specializing in tempura, fish or onigiri rice balls.

rice-onigri

Other options include a tour of Otsuka’s contemporary restaurants or a chance to live it up with the nightlife knowhow of OMO Purple.

omo-rangers-food

Each time, your host will act as your intermediary, introducing you to the places, presenting the food or drink and acting as translator so you can get to know the people and their stories.

These are the kind of places you need a local to take you. The kind of places that are not in guidebooks. And the kind of experience that makes Hoshino Resorts OMO5 Tokyo Otsuka such a unique place to stay.

OTHER EXPERIENCES

kai-alps

Mountain highs at Hoshino Resorts KAI Alps

23 May 2018 in In immersion

Experience the mighty Northern Japan Alps at a reinvented mountain ryokan. Read more

hoshino-resorts-risonare-yatsugatake2

Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Yatsugatake, a city within the city

21 Oct 2016 in In immersion

Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Yatsugatake: an hotel with a surprising layout, designed to enjoy every second of your stay! Read more

sakura-menu

The sakura experience at HOSHINOYA hotels

17 Apr 2019 in In immersion

Mesmerizing sakura sightseeing combines with high-class Japanese hospitality at HOSHINOYA. Read more

OTHER EXPERIENCES

diner

The ultimate sakura experience in Kyoto

22 Mar 2019 in Discover Japan

Our tips to make the most of Kyoto’s cherry blossom, spring cuisine and geisha dances! Read more

risonare

Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Tomamu: deep snow & deep sleep

02 Mar 2018 in In immersion

Test Japan’s famed powder snow in style! At Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Tomamu, you’ll have a private jacuzzi and sauna. Read more

1500x1000FR2 (4)

Try to win a dream stay in Japan in Hoshino Resorts!

14 Apr 2017 in In immersion

Try to win an exceptional stay in Japan in two of the most prestigious hotels from Hoshino Resorts. Read more

most popular articles