Dad and I recently visited Tokyo last month on a whim. Naturally, we did some “homework” to ensure that we were getting a good value at a quality clean and convenient place to stay. The last time I visited Tokyo in September, I stayed at the Sheraton for one night using points, and then for the following three nights, I stayed at what is referred to as a “business hotel”, Hotel Listel Shinjuku. The Hotel Listel Shinjuku was less than $100 a night, and was a perfect crash pad.
This time around, Dad and I opted to stay one night at the luxurious Park Hyatt Tokyo using points just to say we had the experience of staying in one of the finest hotels in Tokyo. Yes, the Park Hyatt was wonderful, but with only two nights in town this time around, the budget hotel that we stayed at the first night, The Comfort Hotel, suited our needs a bit better.
The Listel Hotel Shinjuku
Back in September, I impulsively visited Tokyo for a few days to catch up with an old college pal who was living in and teaching in Japan full time. Since the trip was booked literally a day before I arrived, there wasn’t much time to plan. For our first night, I used 12,000 Starpoints to stay one night at the Sheraton Miyako Hotel. I figured we’d play it by ear for the rest of the nights.
The Sheraton was great, but just a little out of the way, in a quieter part of town. I didn’t want to spend anymore points, since I prefer to transfer Starpoints to airline miles, so we opted to find a budget-friendly, but clean place to stay. I’ll admit, I was a bit nervous and did not know what to expect from the Listel Hotel Shinjuku. I knew it was a budget hotel, and rooms would be tiny, but my main concern was cleanliness.
When we arrived at the hotel, I was pleasantly surprised. Sure, it was basic and small, but very clean (whew), and fully stocked with everything we could need – free wifi, bathroom amenities, towels, robes, slippers, etc. The room and bathroom kind of reminded me of a cruise ship cabin if that makes any sense.
The staff were friendly, but from what I remember, they did not speak much English. My friend did much of the talking in Japanese. It was a little bit of a pain to find the place at first, but once we got the hang of the location, it was easy to get to and from the hotel. Overall, we had a great stay and I’d happily return to another budget “business hotel” in Tokyo in the future.
Comfort Hotel Kiyosumi-Shirakawa
Last month, Dad and I spent one night at the Comfort Hotel Kiyosumi Shirakawa using 8,000 Choice points. Getting to the Comfort Hotel was a breeze from NRT. At the aiport, we purchased a Keisei Skyliner train ticket to Ueno station for 2,400 Yen. From there, we hopped on the Oedo line on the Tokyo Metro to Kiyosumi-Shirakawa (E14). The hotel is literally adjacent to the subway station – could not ask for a better location.
Check-in was quick and our room was spotless. The Comfort Hotel is a newer building to begin with so the room was new, basic, and clean with two double beds. There was free wifi throughout the hotel and complimentary hot breakfast in the morning, featuring a fantastic spread and variety. Do note that check out time is 10:00 am.
If you have Choice Hotel points to burn, I highly recommend this hotel. The location is fabulous – only 15 minutes from popular spots such as Asakusa and Akihabara, and it’s a fantastic value. If you do not have Choice points, rooms sell for about $80-$90 a night.
What other budget-hotel gems have you found in Tokyo? Reader Claire is heading to Tokyo in a few weeks and could use some suggestions!