THE IMPERIAL HOTEL, which will celebrate its 130th anniversary in November 2020, is a Tokyo landmark that has hosted royalty, heads of state, international business leaders, and luminaries like Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe. Originally conceived of as the country’s state guesthouse, it has also been the venue for many key international conferences in its history of well over a century.
Its prestigious location places it alongside the Imperial Palace, fabulous Ginza, Tokyo Station and the Budokan, as well as many foreign embassies. Accordingly, the Imperial Hotel has been an essential part of Japan’s political, economic and cultural life. Since its establishment in 1890, the Imperial Hotel has received countless international visitors with sincerity and classically Japanese hospitality.
When Queen Elizabeth II of Britain visited Japan in 1975, she attended a luncheon at the hotel. Nobuo Murakami, then the head chef, noted the queen’s liking for seafood, and crafted a dish especially for her, a gratin of prawn and sole. With the approval of the queen, who was delighted with the dish, it was named “Reine Elizabeth”. It remains a favourite with many guests, and its presence on the menu is an enduring testimony to the Imperial Hotel’s tradition of attentive, personalised service.
At the same time, the hotel’s design heritage captures the spirit of modern-day Tokyo, which blends the best of East and West in pursuit of the heights of elegance and sophistication. Today’s Imperial Hotel, now in its third incarnation at the original site, still bears numerous design features put in place by Frank Lloyd Wright for the building that opened in 1923, and is inspired by the Art Deco style of the day.
The Imperial Hotel’s status as a Tokyo landmark makes it an ideal base not only for leaders in the worlds of business and politics, but also for discerning leisure travellers who come to Tokyo to immerse themselves in Japan’s refined culture and aesthetics. It overlooks Hibiya Park, where, in the appropriate season, guests can stroll beneath cherry blossoms, wisteria, or the red and gold of autumn leaves. The hotel’s prime position also makes it a perfect starting point to explore the grounds and attractions surrounding the nearby Imperial Palace, and to venture to other renowned districts in central Tokyo.
Stay at the Imperial Hotel on your next visit to the Japanese capital and enjoy its cultivated pleasures while being attended to with superlative service. Staff look forward to welcoming you as you experience the hotel’s rich cultural heritage and put your name alongside those of the people who have shaped Japan and the world.