Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tokyo Diaries II - 2015

Here's the last part of the Tokyo Diaries! 

Sorry it took so long, it's in my drafts for quite sometime and I wanted to space out the entries along with the pregnancy blog posts. ;)



---
Tokyo Tower
4 Chome-2-8 Shibakoen, Minato, 
Tokyo 105-0011, Japan

Getting There:
- The closest subway stations to Tokyo Tower are Onarimon Station on the Mita Subway Line and Akabanebashi Station on the Oedo Subway Line. 
- You can also walk there from Hamamatsucho Station on the JR Yamanote and JR Keihin-Tohoku Line in about 15 minutes. 

After our carbo-loading dinner with the runners, we headed to Tokyo Tower before 11pm. Not to shop nor eat but just to chill and admire the beauty of this 333 metres metal tower. From all angles, the tower looks stunning complemented by the gleaming night lights.




---

[ FOOD ]

Tsukiji Fish Market
5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan

From Shinjuku Station 
- Take the Oedo Subway Line directly from Shinjuku Station to Tsukiji Shijo Station. The one way trip takes 20 minutes and costs ¥260. 

A MUST go! I've blogged about this last year so I won't go into the details. It was a hearty meal that the hubs enjoyed alot - everything on the plate was so fresh! One thing though, the queues are extremely long so be prepared to wait for awhile before savouring those sushis. We didn't visit early in time to catch the morning market since sleep is our top priority in our comfty appartment!









pretty plates on the floor that I was so tempted to snag home

---

Uoriki Kaisen Sushi 
B1 Tokyu Department Store
2-24-1 Shibuya
Daily: 10am – 9pm
Nearest Station: Shibuya

An alternative sushi hunt would be this quaint store tucked at Basement 1 of Tokyu Department Store. I found this from one of the food blogs and true enough - every piece was scrumptious and at a fraction of the sushi paid at Tsujiki Fish Market. Value-for-money without scrimping on its quality. Will definitely be back again!





---

Ichiran Ramen
Shibuya Outlet: 1-22-7 Jinnan | Iwamoto Bldg. B1F, Shibuya 150-0041, Tokyo Prefecture
1. Alight at JR Shinjuku Station - Take the Hachiko Exit
2. At the Junction, spot Tsutaya, then walk to the Starbucks at Tsutaya.

Shinjuku Outlet: Peace Building B1F
3-34-11 Shinjuku Shinjuku-ku Tokyo-to
1. 3 minute walk from JR Shinjuku Station (Higashi Exit)

The ramen store that needs NO introduction. It's still my favourite ramen and we slurped five bowls each during the trip! Best of all is that it's 24 hours so the delish black bowl was a potential supper candidate.











---

Aoyama Flower Market Tea House
5-1-2, MinamiAoyama, Minato-ku
Tokyo, Japan
Tel: +81 3 3400 0887
Nearest Station: Omotesando

The prettiest flower cafe that I have visited which ingeniously combined a teahouse together with a florist. It's very easy to locate and just beside Omotesando Train station.


















Everywhere in Omotesando is so photogenic, even the fashion boutiques like Alexander Mqueen, Balenciaga and the likes which are a stone's throw away from the cafe.



Nespresso Boutique was just beside so we took the chance to stock up on our capsules. One thing to note was NOT to buy their machines. We were attracted to the cheaper price but the Aeroccino (Milk Frother) ended up not being compatible with the Singapore electricity point no matter what we did. I was advised by Nespresso staff in SG that there is no way they could replace the machine which was damaged due to the voltage differences. :(



---

Bills Omotesando 
4-30-3 Jinugu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 7F Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku
, Tel: +81 3-5772-1133 Opening Hours: 8:30am – 11:00pm
4-minute walk from JR Yamanote Line Harajuku Station
1-minute walk from Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line/Fukutoshin Line Meiji Jingu Mae Station.

The most popular cafe in the vicinity for brunch so we took the chance to check it out. As warned before hand, the queue is extremely long but worth every bit of it. We took a queue number and proceeded to the open park to chill before heading up again. There's a Starbucks in the building so you could chill to pass time ;) No pics of the food coz we were too hungry! 




Other cafes in our list @ Omotesando.

i. Streamer Coffee Company (3-28-19, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku)

ii. Omotesando Koffee( 4-15-3 Jingumae Shibuya-ku, Tokyo ) - exit A2/ Meiji Jingumae.. From Omotesando’s Station, make your way towards Maisen Tonkatsu (there are plenty of signboards along the way). At the junction before Maisen, turn left. 

iii. Lattest Omotesando Espresso Bar / 3-5-2 Jingumae Shibuya-ku,Tokyo 
(Stone’s throw away from Omotseando Koffee – is Lattest Omotesando Espresso Bar. If you are cafe-hopping in the area, you have to make a pitstop here. ) Exit A2/Meiji-Jingumae

---

The happening Harajuku street was littered with independent cafes and the cutest cartoon stores that had us hanging around the entire day. I'm not a fan of any cartoon character but couldn't resist spending our time checking out the individual lanes - too kawaii!

Our last stop was the four levels Daiso after cafe-hopping for hours. Go on the weekends as the teenagers are all out in their cosplay outfits! 











The Pom Pom Purin Café
Japan, 150-0001 Tōkyō-to, Shibuya-ku,

Yes we were one of those who braved the crowd to Pompompurin cafe coz it's so cute and unique to Japan. Food was average but everything on the menu was so instagram-worthy.








Calbee @ Harajuku - Freshly fried chips and snacks!





@ Hoshino Coffee



Sin Den
A Wickedly Good Hair Salon in Tokyo 3-9-3 Jingumae
Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001

Tada! Booked a hair-cut appointment in advance after visiting forums and took a leap of faith. The salon was tucked at a corner of an alley which we located due to Google Maps (a must-have!). Despite the language barrier, she understood my instructions of going slightly shorter (2") and gave me a cut which didn't disappoint at all! I was instantly transformed and LOVE how meticulous they are from the washing to blow-drying. 





Misono
 Shinjuku Sumitomo Building, 2 Chome-6-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku, Tokyo 160-0023, Japan
5pm - 9pm
(Reservations required)

Kobe beef at its best for our anniversary dinner!

Reservations are required as every diner will be attended personally to a chef. They don't take walk-ins especially during dinner time. It was an unforgettable meal as we dinned for hours at Level 51 with the night view to ourselves. Paid about SGD350 for two pax, not the cheapest but reasonable with it being the top teppanyaki places in Tokyo. Originator of Teppanyaki!
Must order: Garlic Rice, Kobe Beef

















---
Takashimaya – Katsukura
Takashimaya Times Square 14F, 5-24-2, Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 151-0051
JR Shinjuku Station The south exit 2-minute walk

Tempura that melt in your mouth along with barley rice.



Take-aways from Tokyu Department Store that tasted as good as they looked!






---

[SHOPPING & SIGHT-SEEING]

Apart from the usual Shibuya/ Shinjuku/ Ginza/ Harajuku etc areas, we visited Gotemba Premium Outlet for the first time.

Gotemba Premium Outlets
via Shopping Tour Bus (round trip 2,880 Yen)
Buy tickets: Shinjuku Station(Yoyogi) Bus Terminal
Reservation Center TEL: 03-3844-0495 (10:00 - 18:00)
Odakyu Sightseeing Service Center which is near Bus Stop No.23- 1st floor (Ground Floor), Odakyu Railway Shinjuku Station West Exit

How to get to the bus stop (Route from Shinjuku Station)  

(1) Go out the JR Shinjuku Station New South Exit and walk towards Takashimaya (department store) on the left.

(2) Walk past the entrance to the Takashimaya (department store) towards the right.

(3) Keep on walking until you go past Kinokuniya Book Store.

(4) You will see an escalator with the JR Highway Bus sign so get on the escalator to go down.

(5) Walk across the pedestrian crossing that is right at the foot of the escalator and go left. The bus will depart there.


via Romance Car from Shinjuku to Gotemba (one way 2,500 yen)
Odakyu Limited Express Asagiri (buy tix at machine) –
Gotemba to Outlet (every 10 mins, 30mins, 50 mins hourly)


We took the Shopping Tour Bus since it was cheaper at 2,880 Yen for whole ride which took us an hour or so. Upon seeing this Coffee place, we alighted to change to a shuttle bus for our outlet shopping!





Quick review on the shopping experience here. The brands were extensive (Kate Spade, Michael Kors etc) but I didn't buy much from the stores as they were not as cheap as the USA factory outlets. My husband on the other hand stocked up on loads of sports-wear as they were about 50% discounted. Still, I would recommend this outlet if you have extra time in your itinerary as it provides a cheaper shopping destination in Tokyo.

















---

Tokyo Imperial Palace  
Address: Japan, 100-8111 Tokyo, Chiyoda

Cherry Blossom hunting at Tokyo Imperial Palace before Disneysea. The park-like area is huge and the main residence of the Emperor in Japan, locaed in the Chiyoda ward of Tokyo. Very accessible and connected by a direct train.



















DISNEYSEA 

Getting There
From Shinjuku Station, take the Yamanote Line  to Tokyo Station
From Tokyo Station, take the Keiyo Line / Musashino Line to Maihama Station.
Take the Monorail “Disney Resort Line” from Resort Gateway Station (adjoined to JR Maihama Station) to Tokyo Disney Sea Station
Ticket: 6,400 YEN ($73 / pax)

First time to Disney Sea and I liked it much better than Disneyland coz of the rides!







---

Spent our last few hours sharing a Starbucks drink in the chilly weather with a comforting Katsu Don bowl. 







The most adorable Tokyu Hands discount card!


& Tokyo items + yummy goodies that we lugged home for memories ;)









We hope to see you next year Japan. It's a city that I can never get sick of. <3


No comments: