5 Hour Activities


MORI ART MUSEUM
Roppongi Hills, Mori Tower, 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-5777-8600
mori.art.museum/en

21_21 DESIGN SIGHT
Tokyo Midtown (gardens), 9-7-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-3475-2121
2121designsight.jp/en/

IDÉE CAFÉ PARC
Tokyo Midtown, Galleria 3F, 9-7-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-5413-3454
idee.co.jp

SUNTORY MUSEUM OF ART
Tokyo Midtown, Galleria 3F, 9-7-4 Akasaka, Minatoku
+81-(0)3-3479-8600
suntory.com/sma

DO AN ART CRAWL

  • Visit an art museum displaying big name Japanese and international artists
  • Drop in on an elegant traditional museum to watch a customary tea ceremony
  • Catch up on modern and contemporary art while getting a few design souvenirs

Glitzy Roppongi may be home to two of the city’s most upmarket shopping complexes (Roppongi Hills and Tokyo Midtown), but there’s more to the area than retail therapy. Begin your art crawl at the Mori Art Museum, located on the 53rd floor of the Mori Tower. One of the biggest players in Tokyo’s art scene, it’s the setting for several big-name contemporary art exhibitions a year, both Japanese and international (Takashi Murakami was a highlight of 2015, with his autumn exhibition). Next stop: 21_21 Design Sight, a family-friendly design museum housed in a sleek concrete building by Tadao Ando on the perfectly manicured grounds of Tokyo Midtown. Take a snack break at Parc (the café inside Japanese design store Idée, on the third floor of Tokyo Midtown) before heading to the nearby Suntory Museum of Art on the same level. The elegant contemporary architecture of Kengo Kuma—all latticed light wood and shafts of light—immediately transports visitors to a carefully curated world of traditional Japanese artifacts, from tea-ceremony implements to 19th-century pottery. (Try to schedule your visit to coincide with their tea ceremony, which takes place every other day.) Last stop? The National Art Center Tokyo, which stages major exhibitions focusing on modern and contemporary art. The museum is worth a visit for its gift store Souvenir From Tokyo alone; it stocks oodles of stylish Japanese design pieces.
It’s just a 10 minute cab ride to Roppongi Hills; on the way you’ll pass the busy streets of central Toyko. Once you get there, make your way through the oasis of the Mohri Garden, heading past the sculpture on display and towards the tower.

MORI ART MUSEUM
Roppongi Hills, Mori Tower, 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-5777-8600
mori.art.museum/en

21_21 DESIGN SIGHT
Tokyo Midtown (gardens), 9-7-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-3475-2121
2121designsight.jp/en/

IDÉE CAFÉ PARC
Tokyo Midtown, Galleria 3F, 9-7-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku
+81-(0)3-5413-3454
idee.co.jp

SUNTORY MUSEUM OF ART
Tokyo Midtown, Galleria 3F, 9-7-4 Akasaka, Minatoku
+81-(0)3-3479-8600
suntory.com/sma

TSUKIJI
5-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku
tsukiji-market.or.jp

YUKARI SAKAMOTO OF FOOD SAKE TOKYO
foodsaketokyo.com

MITSUKOSHI
4-6-16 Ginza, Chuo-ku
+81-(0)3-3562-1111
mitsukoshi.mistore.jp/store/ginza

KYUBEY
8-7-6 Ginza, Chuo-ku
+81-(0)3-3571-6523
kyubey.jp/en

EARN YOUR FOODIE STRIPES

  • Make your Piscean pilgrimage to the world’s biggest fish market
  • Check out treats, nibbles and teas at a traditional Japanese food hall
  • The highlight of any tasting tour – dine out on some celebrated sushi

A visit to Tsukiji, the biggest fish market in the world, is a must for any food fanatic worth their fleur de sel. There, you’ll witness row after row of glistening maritime creatures, including eel, sea urchin, octopus, abalone, langoustine, and more. For an inside scoop on the market, book a private tour with friendly food guru Yukari Sakamoto and her husband, Shinji, who used to be a buyer at Tsukiji. As the city starts waking up, your next stop should be nearby Ginza, home for its old-school department stores like Mitsukoshi. Walk past the staff bowing and enthusiastically shouting greetings at the entrance and head downstairs to the basement depachika, or food hall. The bustling expanse of food counters sell a dizzying array of treats such as beautifully wrapped sweet rice cakes, senbei crackers, drinking vinegars, roasted green teas, and freshly cut soba noodles. Crown your tasting tour with yet more fish via a lunch at nearby Kyubey, among the city’s most celebrated sushi restaurants. (Steven Spielberg is a regular.)
Within walking distance of the Conrad Tokyo, turn right as you leave and head down Shin-Ohashi Dori. When you start to smell fish and see mountains of white polystyrene boxes you know you’re getting close; the journey should take about thirty minutes.

TSUKIJI
5-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku
tsukiji-market.or.jp

YUKARI SAKAMOTO OF FOOD SAKE TOKYO
foodsaketokyo.com

MITSUKOSHI
4-6-16 Ginza, Chuo-ku
+81-(0)3-3562-1111
mitsukoshi.mistore.jp/store/ginza

KYUBEY
8-7-6 Ginza, Chuo-ku
+81-(0)3-3571-6523
kyubey.jp/en

PARADISE ALLEY
1-13-10 Komachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)90-8053-9322
paradisealley.jp

KOTOKUIN TEMPLE
1-13-10 Komachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-22-0703
kotoku-in.jp

MATSUBARA-AN
4-10-3 Yuigahama, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-61-3838
matsubara-an.com

INAMURAGASAKI ONSEN
1-16-3 Ogigayatsu, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-22-7199
inamuragasaki-onsen.com

SORAFUNE
2-2-2 Omachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-38-4085
facebook.com/sorafune

HEAD TO THE BEACH…AND AN ONSEN, TOO

  • Fill up on sea air at a sublime coastal town surrounded by dense forests
  • See one of Japan’s most iconic Great Buddha statues
  • Soak your worries away in a traditional Onsen – an outdoor hot-spring bath

For a restorative blast of fresh sea air, leave the skyscrapers behind and jump on a train to Kamakura (only one hour away). The pretty coastal town, surrounded by dense, green, temple-filled mountains, is a mecca for surf lovers, writers, and creatives (novelist Haruki Murakami has a home here). Either walk or rent an old bicycle from the train station (turn right out of the main exit to find a bike-rental outlet) and stop first at the nearby green market. Here, pick up some delicious fresh bread from Paradise Alley to eat later on the beach before peeking inside the boutiques selling everything from herbs to clothing. Next, follow the narrow streets to one of Kamakura’s most famous sites: the vast Great Buddha statue at Kotokuin Temple. Hungry? Head to Matsubara-an, in a serene traditional Japanese house. Nab a seat in the garden (if weather permits) and order a bowl of their handmade soba noodles. The beach is, of course, the heart of Kamakura, lined with temporary bars in the summer months, emptier but no less enticing the rest of the year—and pretty much always perfect for watching the local surfers tackle the (admittedly small) waves with enthusiasm. On clear days, you can make out the distinct silhouette of Mount Fuji in the distance. If you’re feeling chilly, head to Inamuragasaki Onsen, home to traditional mineral-rich indoor and outdoor hot-spring baths. Finally, for some afternoon tea and organic macrobiotic scones (tastier than they sound), swing by Sorafune, a vegan restaurant set in yet another charming wooden kominka house.
Kamakura and the Kotokuin Temple are easily accessed by train from the Conrad Tokyo. It’s a few minutes walk to Shimbashi Station where you can get the Yokosuka Line to Kamakura Station and change for Kotokuin. Alternatively, make the last part of your journey by foot, cutting under the quiet mountainous passes of Kamakura.

PARADISE ALLEY
1-13-10 Komachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)90-8053-9322
paradisealley.jp

KOTOKUIN TEMPLE
1-13-10 Komachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-22-0703
kotoku-in.jp

MATSUBARA-AN
4-10-3 Yuigahama, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-61-3838
matsubara-an.com

INAMURAGASAKI ONSEN
1-16-3 Ogigayatsu, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-22-7199
inamuragasaki-onsen.com

SORAFUNE
2-2-2 Omachi, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture
+81-(0)467-38-4085
facebook.com/sorafune

TOKYOBIKE GALLERY YANAKA
4-2-39 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-5809-0980
tokyobike.com

SONOMITSU
2-18-6 Yanaka, Taito-ku
; +81-(0)3-6904-1312
sonomitsu.com

NIKU NO SUZUKI
3-15-5 Nishi Nippori, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3821-4526
yanakaginza.com/shop/suzuki/

HAGISO
3-10-25 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-5832-9808
hagiso.jp

SCAI THE BATHHOUSE
6-1-29 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3823-3545
scaithebathhouse.com/en

KAYABA COFFEE
6-1-29 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3823-3545
kayaba-coffee.com

SWAP SKYSCRAPERS FOR THE SLOW LIFE

  • Take your foot off the gas to discover a life less neon-lit and fast-paced
  • Rent a bike from an uber-cool cycle shop based out of an old sake brewery
  • Check out a range of indie goods, from handcrafted shoes to linen shirts

Suffering from an overdose of flashing neon billboards? Head to eastern Yanaka, a rare time-capsule neighborhood which somehow escaped the wartime bombings, earthquake damage, and fires that have transformed the rest of the city. Today, it’s famed for its slower pace of life and pretty low-rise streets, plus its emerging community of young creatives. First stop? An 80-year-old former sake brewery with a curved wooden roof that is the flagship home of Tokyobike Gallery Yanaka. Take any of their minimal rainbow-colored bikes for a test drive. Just down the road is Sonomitsu, where bespoke shoes with a vintage feel are painstakingly handcrafted by Hajime Sonoda. Cycle past old tofu sellers and sake shops on the main old-school shopping street, picking up a delicious takeaway menchi-katsu deep-fried meat cutlet from famed butchers Niku no Suzuki. Around the corner is Hagiso, a black cube of a building housing a wooden café and art gallery (their mackerel sandwich is a must). A short cycle away is Classico, one of Yanaka’s original lifestyle stores, which feels more like straying inside someone’s home than going shopping (pick up one of their white linen shirts). Not far away is Scai the Bathhouse—one of the city’s best independent art galleries, located in a small former public bathhouse (wooden lockers are still intact in the entrance) and exhibiting artists ranging from Kohei Nawa to Anish Kapoor. On the same block, join fellow coffee obsessives in the line outside the atmospheric Kayaba Coffee, a 100-year-old coffee shop with a cool Midcentury Modern interior.
The tiny Yanaka area is served by Nippori Station which puts you near Tennoji Temple. Head past the Yanaka cemetery and down the side streets of Kototoi Dori to discover a host of independent retailers. Tokyobike is opposite the Kanchiin Buddhist Temple.

TOKYOBIKE GALLERY YANAKA
4-2-39 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-5809-0980
tokyobike.com

SONOMITSU
2-18-6 Yanaka, Taito-ku
; +81-(0)3-6904-1312
sonomitsu.com

NIKU NO SUZUKI
3-15-5 Nishi Nippori, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3821-4526
yanakaginza.com/shop/suzuki/

HAGISO
3-10-25 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-5832-9808
hagiso.jp

SCAI THE BATHHOUSE
6-1-29 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3823-3545
scaithebathhouse.com/en

KAYABA COFFEE
6-1-29 Yanaka, Taito-ku
+81-(0)3-3823-3545
kayaba-coffee.com


DAIKANYAMA T-SITE
17-5 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-3770-2525
tsite.jp/daikanyama/store-service/tsite-en

IVY PLACE
16-15 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
;+81-(0)3-6415-3232
tysons.jp/ivyplace/

OKURA
20-11 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-3461-8511
hrm.co.jp/okura

BONJOUR RECORDS
24-1 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-5458-6020

JOIN THE LOCALS

  • Browse a stunning book emporium to pick up a good read or two
  • Rekindle your love of music you can actually pick up and hold
  • Visit an urban jewelry studio designing handcrafted leather creations

Just a short hop away from Shibuya (less than 10 minutes on foot from the Daikanyama station) is a different world entirely: the quietly upmarket Daikanyama and Nakameguro neighborhoods. Start at the design-award-winning T-Site complex in Daikanyama, home to Tsutaya Books, a gorgeous book emporium that chic denizens treat as an extension of their homes. When you’re done flicking through style tomes, head to Ivy Place next door for an American-style brunch. Sit on the terrace and indulge in some designer-clad-dog-watching—the city’s most pampered pooches visit T-Site’s doggie spa. Now it’s time for some retail therapy: just around the corner you’ll find Okura, a boutique housed in a traditional Japanese building where all things indigo are celebrated (the menswear collection, modern with a Japanese twist, is particularly strong, from its tailored jackets and trousers to deep blue T-shirts emblazoned with a big red sun). Next up? Bonjour Records, celebrating the analog lifestyle. A few doors further is Frank and Easy, a diminutive atelier run by a popular hipster duo who handcraft edgy urban jewelry and accessories. Their Daikanyama store is home mainly to their leather creations (studded cuffs; colorful purses). A sister studio—equally petite—in Shimokitazawa is where they make and showcase their metal jewelry.
From Daikanyama station walk down the main street, past various fashion and design stores until you reach the T-Site Plaza. The entrance is marked with several large trees and a curved stone driveway. The mall itself is made of several building in total.

DAIKANYAMA T-SITE
17-5 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-3770-2525
tsite.jp/daikanyama/store-service/tsite-en

IVY PLACE
16-15 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
;+81-(0)3-6415-3232
tysons.jp/ivyplace/

OKURA
20-11 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-3461-8511
hrm.co.jp/okura

BONJOUR RECORDS
24-1 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku
+81-(0)3-5458-6020