Planning the Toyko Trip - Accomodation

Wednesday, September 16, 2009 Posted by YY on 9:21 AM

Hotel Hanamiya @ Ikebukuro

Link: http://www.hnmy.jp/english/index.htm
- Email them to reserve rooms
- Room rate at Hanamiya is ¥7350 (incl. 5% tax applicable) per night for double room.
- Please note that they only accept cash.
- Hanamiya is located about 8-10mins walk from JR Ikebukuro station, exit the train station from North/West Exit.

On our first day, we exited the Ikebukuro JR Station West Exit and didn't know where we should go cos it was all buildings -_-'. After dragging our luggages for 30 mins, we finally spotted a signboard saying 华宫旅馆, there is no sign of the words Hanamiya(English) on that signboard.

Actually, I would have booked either SuperHotel/Toyoko Hotel if they had a vacant room for me for all 14days. Hanamiya is operated by a Chinese National, so if you can speak Chinese there is no language barrier here. We checked in and paid for our 14 days of stay in cash and chose a room at the highest level, 4th floor. To our suprise, the room was pretty good considering the low price.

If you have problems with hard mattresses, please do not stay here. I mean the bed is seriously hard but its fine for me =) The walls aren't really that thin cos I didn't hear what the other occupants were doing in their rooms hehe~

Simple amenities provided: Fridge, bath tub, TV, LAN wire are available in the room. Other items like clothes iron, internet pc and washing machine are available for loan.

The cold drinks from vending machines costs at least ¥100, and you know this is going to be costly. The fridge came in handy as we stocked up some 2litre barley tea(¥168) and 1 litre calpis(¥198 ONLY!! Compared to 330ml for S$3 at least) purchased from nearby grocery stores.



The weather at night during our stay wasn't too hot, it was about 25~28 degrees on the average so there were a few nights where we slept with the windows opened. On the 2nd day, K actually woke up laughing cos the crows were going "Ah HOCK! Ah HOCK!"..just like the crows in the anime.

It was fantastic staying here because of its location, being in the heart of Ikebukuro. There's 100yen shop, supermarket, local grocery store, ramen joints, izakayas within 10mins walk.

Shall cover some of the good food located around Ikebukuro later.

Other accomodation:
While researching for the trip, I read a few Taiwanese blogs recommending these 2 hotels:

- Super Hotel : http://www.superhotel.co.jp/
This hotel is located all over Japan and the rates are really reasonable considering the facilities that are provided(internet terminal, printing, 3 mins international call)
* Booking can be done on the Japanese language page.
* A review on Super Hotel.

- Toyoko Hotel : http://www.toyoko-inn.com/index.html
This is another chain business hotel providing similar accomodation like Super Hotel.

Some considerations:
* How convenient is it to move from your hotel to the nearest train station
* Is there any eateries nearby?

* Is there any 100 yen shops/Super marts around?
This is very important cos it determines if you have to spend more money to have a simple breakfast or late night snack.
For example, a simple onigiri(rice ball)+ Caffe Latte(coffee drink that's really fantastic even to non coffee drinkers like myself) will only cost you ¥208 (5% taxes incl) if you get it from the 100yen shop. This is also one of the reasons why I didn't feel hotels with breakfast provided were worth paying more for.

* How expensive is it for you to transit from one line to another to move around in Tokyo
* Is the accomodation costs deducted at the point of reservation via your credit card? Do take note of this as lousy exchange rates charged by your credit card company will increase your costs significantly.

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