Tokyo, Japan

Hotel K5

Price per night from$273.06

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 60 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (JPY43,445.45), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

Style

Slicked-up sukiya

Setting

Tokyo’s monied quarter

Let us count the ways we love 1920s bank turned so-freaking-cool Tokyo crashpad Hotel K5. There are more than its numerical moniker: a Japanese-Nordic eatery with work-of-art plates; rooms (some with extra-high ceilings and free minibars) with beds swathed in indigo curtains and custom furnishings by a top Swede architect; the first Brooklyn Brewery bar outside of the US. Plus the little things, like kintsugi-d cracks in the old stone, hundreds of tile patterns, mood lighting in bathrooms. Add a community-minded core that’s helped to pump life into the formerly dour Nihonbashi neighbourhood, and you have a hotel that’s much more than the sum of its parts.

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

Local sweets, snacks or a small gift in your room at check-in

Facilities

Photos Hotel K5 facilities

Need to know

Rooms

20, including one suite.

Check–Out

Noon. Earliest check-in, 3pm. Early and late times must be booked five days in advance and are dependent on availability; they’re free an hour either side, for two-to-three hours it’s 30 per cent of the room rate, and for three-to-four it’s 50 per cent.

Prices

Double rooms from £237.33 (JPY47,790), including tax at 10 per cent.

More details

Rates don’t include breakfast (from JPY1,500). But guests get a welcome cocktail made with oolong tea, apple cider, elderflower and pepper.

Also

Unfortunately, this hotel isn’t best suited to guests with mobility issues.

At the hotel

Coffee bar, workspace, free-to-hire bikes, books and records to borrow, charged laundry service, plug adaptors (on request). In-rooms: Bluetooth speaker, record-player and selection of vinyl, minibar, Balmuda drip-coffee maker, Ao teas, selection of books, pyjama set to borrow, free bottled water, and Natural Foundation bath products and skincare kit.

Our favourite rooms

A very fine example of Japandi style, with plenty of respectful bows to traditional Zen minimalism, Swedish designer Ola Rune and architect firm Claesson Koivisto Rune have furnished rooms and suites with largely custom pieces: beds with integrated shelving and a desk, ovoid sofas in bright hues, geometric leather recliners. From the K5 Room up, beds are swathed in light indigo-dyed veils (a nod to local style, alongside sliding doors, ample cedar wood and paper lanterns), and the K5 Suite is vast for a Tokyo crashpad, with dining space and party potential. Whichever category you go for, book the version on the fourth (and top) loft floor, for four-metre-plus high ceilings. Rooms at this level also get a free minibar (excluding wine) too.

Packing tips

Bring your Macbook and a sociable outlook; the trio behind Hotel K5 (Yuta Oka, Akihiro Matsui, and Takahiro Homma) have all done forward-thinking work in spaces for co-workers and global nomads in Tokyo. Hotel K5 has several come-together spaces for work and play, so, get involved.

Also

Hotel windows are tinted in bold hues, making just walking down the corridor feel cinematic. Pause to admire the craftwork that’s gone into the design: hundreds of different tile patterns, curved cedar-wood walls and kintsugi-d cracks.

Children

Kids can stay, but there’s a more relaxed, grown-up feel to Hotel K5 (and while we love the kintsugi fixes, we don’t want the artisans to have their work cut out).

Sustainability efforts

The grand 1920s Dai-ichi bank headquarters Hotel K5 has taken residence in was once due for demolition. But the owners saw its potential and secured Swedish architect firm Claesson Koivisto Rune to convert it into a super-cool stay. In doing so they kept the character of the building with some rough original walls left as-is, cracks filled with gold lacquer in the kintsugi style, and parquet restored. The hotel is also very involved in the local community, building restaurants and bars, and establishing links with local businesses. Otherwise, the hotel has LED lighting, recycles, uses local food sources where possible, and cuts back on plastics.

Food and Drink

Photos Hotel K5 food and drink

Top Table

In Caveman you can embrace the hotel’s community-forward ethos by sharing the long communal table, or nab one of the circular tables for something more intimate – the bar has a row of stools if you want to watch the chefs, too.

Dress Code

As trendily tailored as the hotel – think cult labels from Sweden and Japan.

Hotel restaurant

Caveman might sound a bit rough around the edges, but it’s really very polished with the bank’s original parquet flooring, cedar-wood tables and steel shelves overflowing with plants – adding a slight prehistoric touch. A sister to the Nordic-leaning Kabi restaurant in Meguro, this eatery shakes off some of the baked-in traditions of Japanese cuisine, mixing up dishes with French and Danish flavours, and miraculously persuading established chefs who are notoriously secretive about their recipes into collaborative meals. This is dainty dining to savour, with platings you could display on a plinth: reef squid with turnip, hazelnut milk and fig-leaf oil; balsamic-marinated bonito with wild sesame and saffron mayo; a kebab with grilled eel and canola flowers. In the open-plan space there’s also Switch Coffee, for cult roasts (open 8am to 5pm). And, in the basement, B bar has an American-leaning menu of tacos and quesadillas.

Hotel bar

The hotel has three bars. Scarlet-hued, bookshelf-lined Ao sits to the right of the entrance and is named after Eiichi Shibusawa, Japan’s father of capitalism (whose pen-name was Ao) – which is fitting for this monied neighbourhood. And liquid assets are in abundance with plenty of sours or ‘sawas’ as they’re known colloquially (the lemon is the signature, but you could also have one flavoured with pine-infused wine and ginger; chocolate, orange and barrel-aged shochu; or whisky and oolong tea). In the middle of the open-plan space housing Switch Coffee and Caveman there’s a wine bar, with lots of enticingly-labelled bottles and sakes. And in the basement is B, the first Brooklyn Brewery outside of the US, serving up the brand’s suite of brews in a large concrete-lined space where DJs man the decks on Fridays and Saturdays.

Last orders

Breakfast is from 8am to 9.30pm, lunch from 11.30am to 2pm, and dinner sittings start at 6.30pm, 7pm or 7.30pm. The restaurant is closed on Thursdays, and on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month.

Location

Photos Hotel K5 location
Address
Hotel K5
3-5 Nihonbashi Kabuto-cho Chuo-ku
Tokyo
103-0026
Japan

Chuo City is the heart of Tokyo (indeed, it’s here the city was first established, and all neighbourhoods radiate out from it), and it’s here in Nihonbashi Hotel K5 sits, in a grand building facing the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Planes

Narita Airport is an hour’s drive away, or you can ride the Skyliner to Nihombashi Station. Haneda Airport (AKA Tokyo International Airport) is just a 20-minute drive away, too, with various public transport routes available.

Trains

Tokyo Central Station (where the Narita Airport express arrives) is a five-minute drive or 15-minute walk from the hotel. You’re very well placed for exploring the city, with three Metro stations within easy walking distance: Kayabachō (on the Tozai and Hibiya lines) a five-minute walk away; Mitsukoshimae (on the Ginza and Hanzomon lines) a 10-minute walk away; and Nihombashi (on the Tozai, Ginza and Toei Asakusa lines) a 12-minute walk away.

Automobiles

You don’t need to drive in Tokyo – the Metro is fast and fairly easy to navigate, and the hotel has a fleet of free-to-use bikes, too. But, if you do bring some wheels, there’s a carpark next door.

Worth getting out of bed for

Tokyo’s Nihonbashi district was once considered Japan’s Wall Street, with its stock exchange and several large banking headquarters in situ. As such, it was a bit of a dead zone for those exploring the city, but the three disruptors behind Hotel K5 are considerably livening up the area – not just with this super-cool place to crash, but by launching a bistro and wine stand, and making connections with local eateries and bars, such as Pâtisserie Ease. The neighbourhood’s still on the up, but root around and you’ll find Haibara, a mod black box of a paper store with a heritage stretching back to the Edo period; the 1,000-plus-year-old Fukutoku Shrine (said to be luckiest for lottery winners); and a branch of the Coredo Muromachi shopping centre, for covetable homewares, daifuku sweets, custom tea blends, packages of kelp… And come October, the Nihonbashi-Kyobashi Festival (which celebrates the Nihonbashi Highway in lavish fashion), passes through here, with dazzling costumery, dozens of food stalls and thousands of dancers and performers. The Artizon Museum is just down the road, interspersing modern Japanese art with European masters; across the Sumida River is the Museum of Contemporary Art; and further south is Teamlab Planets Tokyo for fantastical large-scale installations. Ginza’s renowned shopping district is next door: pick up incense from Kyukyodo, yukatas from Suzunoya, cartoon cuteness at Sanrio’s flagship store, and see which work of literature is the focus of the week at Morioka Shoten, a ‘single room with a single book’ concept store that sells copies of one work a week, with a themed art show. And you can easily reach lively Shibuya, home of the famous ‘scramble’ crossing and Yoyogi Park for top-tier people-watching (expect lots of cute dogs in prams) – there are several cafés where you can play with shiba-inus and kitties, too. And, though Harajuku might lean towards tourist trap these days, its out-there clothes stores and alluring food stalls keep it one of the city’s funnest hang-out spots.

Local restaurants

Alongside Hotel K5’s hip offerings, there’s a wealth of eateries adding value to this former banking district – and no need to suit-and-tie it, those mingling here are in ironic slogan tees (likely from the place you’re sitting in). In the same vein as the hotel’s super-Swede cachet is Omnipollos, a Stockholm transplant set here in a century-old unagi restaurant given a bold graphic makeover by designer Fredrik Paulsen. Its comfort food ranges from fried-chicken sandwiches to Thai glass noodles to adobo baos stuffed with lemongrass pork belly. Its beer list is audacious too, with cans you’ll want to keep and collabs resulting in the likes of marzipan-coffee-cream imperial stout or a blueberry toasted coconut and marshmallow gose. Their merch drops always offer something cool too. Asahina Gastronome is more erudite, with multi-course Michelin-starred French meals by laurelled chef Satoru Asahina. Think sole meunière with champagne and caviar, chicken cooked in a pig’s bladder (nicer than it sounds) with truffle in a foie-gras cream, and Lozère lamb with Provençale vegetables, all precision-plated. Pony Pasta has fresh dishes every day, which might be mortadella ravioli in butter sauce, baked onion with a parmesan crumble in mustard cream, or pappardelle in walnut butter. Pair with decadent lasagna croquettes and pick up a ‘fettucine’ tee on the way out so it doesn’t get spilt on. And Bistro Yen is also set in a former bank – sit up at the counter to watch the chefs whip up the likes of mackerel with grilled mandarin; herby seaweed, tuna and olive pasta with lemon and mint; and asparagus and 16-month-matured ham in hollandaise.

Local cafés

Coin coffee bar is renowned for its drinkables, but also the sweet things they pair them with: fruity tiramisu with Ethiopian coffee, rum-licked custard pudding, slabs of carrot cake. For more sugar highs, head to Teal chocolate shop, sister to Pâtisserie Ease. Its concoctions are dreamy: choux puffs pumped full of Amazon cacao cream; chocolate and strawberry-yuzu ice-cream drizzled in olive oil; an elegant take on Snickers; and dark-chocolate-dipped charred-lemon madeleines.

Local bars

Human Nature has bottles of natural wines with labels worthy of a gallery wall poured out in its teeny bar, with just a strip of stools. There’s plenty to glug, and – don’t worry – if you get a bit squiffy it’s also home to Stockholm Roast, whose rich brews will put your head straight. Or, if you want a more traditional tipple, head to Heiwa Doburoku Brewery to sip on potent sakes. Keep an eye out for the limited-edition takes, such as matcha-blueberry and apple.

Reviews

Photos Hotel K5 reviews

Anonymous review

Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this artfully crafted hotel in Japan’s former finance locus and unpacked their delicate washi paper and artful cans of craft brews, a full account of their wise-investment break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Hotel K5 at the heart of Tokyo…

It’s rare that a hotel commits so heavily to bringing the magic, but Tokyo’s Hotel K5 really goes for it: colourfully tinted windows and mood lighting in bathrooms make you feel like you’ve slipped into a scene from In the Mood for Love (if it was set in Japan…); cracks in the building (the converted Dai-ichi bank HQ, built in the 1920s) glint with kintsugi gold lacquer; and most of the beds are ringed with gauzy, indigo-dyed curtains. Add in statuesque plants in every corner, books and turntables instead of TVs to foster a sense of peace, and museum-worthy custom furnishings and you have a stay as considered as it is cool. It’s set in Japan’s former financial district, which once had a buttoned-down feel, but thanks to more holistic-minded investment from the trio of hotel owners (making handshake deals with local businesses, launching bistros and wine bars, creating a stylish co-working spot) it’s becoming the city’s hot commodity. And, the hotel welcomes all to pound a few beers at the first Brooklyn Brewery bar outside the US or sip sours in the cocktail lounge, tuck into imaginative Nordic-Japanese dishes, mingle with fellow design-lovers, and just generally be enchanted.

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Price per night from $273.06