“In a city like Tokyo, there is something particularly decadent about a building that sprawls horizontally as the Hotel Okura does. It’s such a flagrant misuse of space, especially in the heart of downtown. And oh, how the Okura sprawls — its grounds cover an expanse more than three times the size of the city’s baseball stadium. It has its own post office, its own barbershop, a private art museum, a tea ceremony room, and a salon just for playing go, an ancient board game akin to chess.
“Opened in 1962 in the Toranomon business district, the Hotel Okura is a window into the luxuries of another time, when seats in coach had legroom and nobody had ever heard of molecular gastronomy. The genteel Orchid Room restaurant still serves things like lobster thermidor, brought to the table by tuxedoed waiters. Lobby attendants wear kimonos. But it couldn’t last forever; it’s a miracle it lasted as long as it did.”
Published in the Dec/Jan 2015 issue of DestinAsian Magazine.
The Okura lent me some awesome vintage photos for the article, which are worth a look!