Alex Catarinella

Apartment Hotel Shinjuku

with Alex Catarinella
  • Where:Tokyo, Japan

  • Why:Sakura season vacation.

  • When:Late March.

  • Who:Just me.

Highs & Lows

  • Apartment Hotel Shinjuku has so much personality. First of all, it looks like a house -- love those ‘70s red roof tiles. And it’s hidden down a quiet alley lined with cute apartments.

  • I felt like an asshole in my sweats because the employees (who are so so nice) dress so so cool. Not only is the lobby and the basement an adorable hip as hell antique-y store, so is the outside where you can smoke, sip a Blue Bottle and/or 7-11 coffee (they’re both less than a five minute stroll away) and watch the locals bike by. The porch is packed with funky furniture and quirky items, like an empty bird cage, all, I think, for purchase. The items are out there all night. That’s how safe the neighborhood is.

  • Location is everything. Shinjuku station is a five minute walk away. But you might get distracted by its neighbor AKA Takashimaya AKA the only department store I’ll ever fuck with. SO GOOD.

  • Each room is designed differently! I think next time I’ll stay for thirty days in thirty different rooms. #Dream

  • If you’re a snob, this place probably won’t be your jam. But I’ve gotta tell you, I stayed at a five star hotel in Hong Kong before I landed at Narita and I preferred it here. Felt like home. (In other words, my tiny room was akin to my Lower East Side studio, except it wasn’t deteriorating and it was a lot cuter and quieter.

    The Barometer

    • Design

    • Website

    • Life Changing

    • Environmental Consciousness

    • Overall Value

    • Night's Sleep

    • Service

    • Amenities

    • Stealable Stuff

    • Refer a Friend

    Total: 47/50

    Important Bits

    • Type

      Hip & artsy cheap as shit/cute as hell apartment-style hotel.

    • Vibe

      Sort of like you’re in a hipster Bushwick college dorm. So much personality. Adorable. Stay here.

    • Location

      In the heart of amazing Shinjuku. The location is everything. Besides the claustrophobia-friendly capsule hotels, you cannot beat this price in this location!

    • Rooms

      30

    • Music

      Chill tunes in the lobby. From ambient rock to jazz. PS. The lobby is awesome. It’s an art gallery/quirky antique store. Dishes, ashtrays, clothing, light fixtures, etc. For more goodies, head downstairs.

    • Year Opened

      2010

    • Designed By

      The hotel is a former Japanese inn and was rebuilt in the early ‘70s and renovated to become a hotel in 2010.

    • Pool/Gym

      No but unnecessary. Take a jog in the gorgeous Shinjuku Gyoen park. Less than a ten minute walk away.

    • Restaurant

      No, but rooms come with a kitchenette.

    • Bar

      No. There’s a slew of those in the hood.

    • Minibar

      No mini bar. Just a lil kitchen and lil fridge.

    • Wifi

      Fast and free.

    • Children

      Maybe if they’re on a leash. There’s delicate stuff in the lobby!

    • Price

      So cheap for Shinjuku. A single room, which I stayed in, is like 60ish USD.

    It’s about an eight minute walk away. It’s massive, it’s gorgeous, especially when it’s sakura season.

    Get thee to Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

    Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

    It’s about an eight minute walk away. It’s massive, it’s gorgeous, especially when it’s sakura season.

    But save your coins for dinner at Katsukura located on the iconic department store’s 14th floor. This is a “I don’t eat pork” rule breaking MUST.

    Get your shop on at Takashimaya

    Takashimaya Shinjuku Store, Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan

    But save your coins for dinner at Katsukura located on the iconic department store’s 14th floor. This is a “I don’t eat pork” rule breaking MUST.

    That’s where the locals would bring me after many a late night Shinjuku Ni-chome (about a ten minute walk from the hotel) gay bar crawl. Whether you’re wasted or not, the Japanese bites are SO GOOD. Karaage chicken and umeboshi rice balls, please.

    LOL at me if you want, but the 24/7 colorful as a kaleidoscope 7-Eleven’s are awesome.

    7-Eleven Nishishinjuku 1-chome, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

    That’s where the locals would bring me after many a late night Shinjuku Ni-chome (about a ten minute walk from the hotel) gay bar crawl. Whether you’re wasted or not, the Japanese bites are SO GOOD. Karaage chicken and umeboshi rice balls, please.

    Apartment Hotel Shinjuku

    Apartment Hotel Shinjuku -アパートメントホテル新宿, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

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