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The Gate Hotel, Tokyo: Heritage Nabe Haven

Star-chitect Shigeru Uchida’s Asakusa abode is all about local character and charm. 

Since that big ol’ Skytree sprouted in NE nabe Sumida, nearby heritage district Asakusa has been enjoying a surge in popularity with travellers seeking a little more in the way of local flavour. But while Senso-ji Temple (the city’s oldest) has long been the area’s star resident, these days it gets a little competition with the arrival of the sleek, shiny beacon of modernity that is Hulic’s The Gate Hotel.

Designed by homegrown star-chitect Shigeru Uchida, the elegant mid-rise exudes moody charm in a palette of deep purples, forest greens and shimmering greys. The 137 rooms feature Slumberland beds, Masaru Suzuki-designed textiles, artwork by Katsuhiko Hibino, Hansgrohne Raindance showers and free WiFi – oh, and jaw-dropping vistas of that aforementioned across-the-way neighbour.

When you’re feeling pecky, there’s French-Japanese fusion diner R Restaurant & Bar, and a 14/F roof terrace for chilled pre and posts with a view. But to truly make the most of this character-packed locale we say take to the surrounding streets and get lost amongst the shrines, theatres and artisan stores, plus be sure to keep your peepers peeled for those elusive geisha gals – this is one of the few remaining places in the city they’re to be found. Hai!

The Gate Hotel, 2-16-11 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo. +81 3 5826 3877,

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