Tokyo 2011 – Top Hotels

This is a third update from two years ago of the 2009 Tokyo hotel ratings in the Michelin Guide.   Notable changes are that there are no 5 red star hotels this year but I believe that is a typo in the book so I’ve listed them as 5 red-stars.   2009 is here and 2010 ...

Tokyo 2010 – Top Hotels 1

This is an update to my post last year of the 2009 Tokyo hotel ratings in the Michelin Guide.  Notable changes are the Shangri-La displaced the Conrad for #5 in the top tier.  The Nikko moved up to four red (from four black). I’ll repeat the same pitch I gave last year.   If you are ...

Deflation in Japan

Deflation in Japan
One menacing characteristic (from a macroeconomic viewpoint) of the Japanese economy now is deflation. It’s evident at izakaya (watering holes) everywhere in Japan. Y300 plates (or less). Food has really come down in price since the heady Bubble years and it is really nice to enjoy a few beers and tapas for a little bit ...

Fresh Hitachi Train

Fresh Hitachi Train
These are some shots of the Fresh Hitachi Line train that traverses the JR Joban Line in Eastern Japan.

Underground at Ueno-Hirokoji Station

Underground at Ueno-Hirokoji Station
People frequently ask me about navigating the trains and subways in Tokyo. It can be a daunting task. The important thing to do is to prepare properly. First, you should know the area you are interested in, you should know which train or subway lines are in the area and what the stations are called. ...

Light Bar on Police Car

Light Bar on Police Car
This is something I have never seen before. It’s a light bar on top of a police car that extends upward for better visibility. I saw this in Ryogoku after a sumo tournament while I was walking back to the station.  Very clever, but I’m not sure how useful it might be.

100-yen Shop in Akihabara

100-yen Shop in Akihabara
Day 13 Post Note: This is from a series of trip reports from my January 2010 Tokyo Trip. They are random musings about whatever seems interesting for that day. On day 13, my getaway day, I left my bags at Keisei Nippori and headed to Akihabara for lunch and some final omiyage (souvenir) shopping. In ...

Tonkatsu at Sueyoshi

Tonkatsu at Sueyoshi
Day 11 PostNote: This is from a series of trip reports from my January 2010 Tokyo Trip. They are random musings about whatever seems interesting for that day. Seems like an annual event now but on day 11 I went to Akasaka to visit my second favorite tonkatsu restaurant in the world (Katsuretsu-an being my ...

Delay on JR

Delay on JR
Day 10 Post Note: This is from a series of trip reports from my January 2010 Tokyo Trip. They are random musings about whatever seems interesting for that day. I was headed to Yokohama on day 10 to visit a friend. The following message popped up on the display. Chuo Line “Delay” due to “clearing ...

South Entrance/Exit at JR Shinjuku Station

South Entrance/Exit at JR Shinjuku Station
This post is about the south entrance/exit at JR Shinjuku Station in Tokyo. This is the entrance sometimes referred to as “Lumine 2″ This is looking directly east with your back facing the station. The bridge on the right side is Koshu Kaido. The exact location of these first two shots is here. This is ...