Tokyo was our longest stop during our 2017 Round-the-World trip. As we all know, Tokyo is an expensive city, and spending 7 nights in Tokyo would cost a lot of $$$. However, we were able stay 7-nights at a 4-star hotel in Tokyo for $0. Thanks to Marriott's awesome 7-night travel package (which has devalued big time after Aug 17, 2018).
I've been stockpiling my SPG points for awhile, and decided to transfer most of my SPG points to Marriott and redeemed the 7-night Travel Package (Cat 6 hotels) for 300,000 Marriott points as soon as SPG & Marriott announced the merger. I've already identified the hotel I wanted so I went ahead and redeemed the Cat 6 package.
I used the hotel certificate that came with the travel package to book 7-nights at the Courtyard Tokyo Station, a Cat 6 hotel (it subsequently went up to Cat 8, and is currently Cat 5 under the new program). I picked this hotel because it was the only Cat 6 hotel available in Tokyo (when I booked) and the reviews were pretty good.
Notice that I booked the hotel in Sept 2016 for our stay in Aug 2017 (almost a year in advance), I definitely plan far ahead when it comes to vacation. =P
Even though the reservation showed taxes and fees of JPY 2,800 ($25), we were not charged anything upon check out so our 7-night hotel in Tokyo really costed $0.
Just for fun, I checked how much our 7-nights stay would have costed....
A whopping total of JPY 223,031 ($2,000)!! Certainly not an amount I would pay out of pocket!
Getting to the Hotel
We flew into Tokyo Haneda Airport (closer to the city than Narita airport) . As we were planning to do some sightseeing that evening, we bought the Tokyo travel 1 day pass from the Keikyu Tourist Information Center for JPY 800 ($7.50) per pax. The 1-day pass was good for a one-way travel on Keikyu Line from Haneda airport and unlimited use of Toei Subway lines for the day.
Your first stop at the airport should be the ATM to get some Japanese yen as you'll need to use cash to purchase the train/subway tickets. The Haneda Keikyu Tourist Information Center is located at 2F Arrival Lobby.
We took the Keikyu/Asakusa line from Haneda Airport to Takaracho Station. The subway ride was approximately 25min.
After getting off the subway at Takaracho station, it was a short 5 min walk (400m) to the hotel.
The hotel is located in the Kyobashi Trust Tower office building.
Take one of these elevators to the 4th floor to get to the hotel lobby.
Upon check-in, we also received our breakfast vouchers for 7 days (complimentary for Marriott Gold & Platinum members), a menu of complimentary food and beverages for the evening reception, and was informed that there is a fridge filled with alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages available for Gold and Platinum members 24 hours. =)
On top of all the great perks for Gold and Platinum members, we also received a nice welcome goody bag with Japanese snacks, a cookie, and 3 cans of Suntory beer. =D Thank you Courtyard Tokyo Station for kicking off our stay in Tokyo with such a warm welcome!
Our room was on the 2nd floor so we took the same elevator down. As soon as we got out of the elevator, there was a glass door and we had to use our room key card to get to the rooms.
Our upgraded King corner room (room 249). Somehow this room is not shown on the hotel's website. The room and bathroom is considered good-sized for Tokyo's standards. I've stayed in much smaller hotel in Tokyo.
Source: Courtyard Tokyo Station website
The hotel had a gym but we didn't use it at all (had enough of walking all around Tokyo). The hotel doesn't have a club lounge but as mentioned above, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are available 24 hours in the fridge at the lobby for Gold and Platinum members.
One of the best Marriott Gold/Platinum perk for this hotel was the complimentary breakfast we received throughout our stay at the Lavarock cafe at the ground floor. Breakfast is available from 6.30am-10am. According to the hotel's website, The buffet breakfast costs JPY 3,088/pax, that means a total of JPY43,232 (USD390) for the both of us for 7 days (not something I would pay for sure). They had a wide variety of Asian and American options for the buffet. There are also made-to-order sets. Definitely one of the best hotel breakfasts I've had. =)
Apart from the buffet spread, we also ordered the made-to-order breakfast set everyday. Hubby had the Waffle and Pancake set but was a lil' disappointed with the mini pancake because he was expecting the normal American-sized pancake. I had the Japanese set (rice, miso soup, salmon, egg roll, pickled veggie) and absolutely loved it! We had these as 'brunch', which helped to cut down our food cost substantially.
The hotel definitely treat Marriott Gold and Platinum members like VIPs by offering complimentary food and beverages for the evening reception at GGCo. (weekdays) and Lavarock (weekends) between 5.30pm-7.30pm. When we were there, the food options were edamame, assorted pickles, marinated olives, assorted cheese, mixed nuts, smoked salmon, fish & chips, french fries, garlic toast, grilled sausages, chicken wings & onion rings, caesar salad, and chef selected cold cuts. They don't limit how many items you can order so we ordered a variety of selections just to try. As for beverages, they had wine, draft beer, spirits, cognac, liquer, whisky, and soft drinks. If you're not a big eater, you could easily spend nothing on food in Tokyo with the complimentary breakfast and evening reception. Not that we did, but we could have. =P
The hotel was conveniently located within walking distance to various public transport options and attractions such as Ginza and Imperial Palace. The hotel is 1min to Kyobashi station (Tokyo Metro Ginza line), 5min to Takaracho station (Toei Asakusa line), and 10min to Tokyo Station (JR lines).
We're not 'needy' guests and our experience with all the hotel staffs was very pleasant, and there was hardly any language barrier. Japanese are known for being courteous and polite, and we definitely agree with that. Even the staffs at the restaurant were very helpful and nice. Best of all, they gladly brought out all the food we ordered for the evening reception, with no judgement at all.
Honestly, if it wasn't for reward points, I probably wouldn't have stayed in this hotel (or any major chain hotels). However, if the price is within your budget or if you have Marriott points (35,000/night), I'd say it is a solid option for Tokyo for all the points I mentioned above, especially for Gold or Platinum members. The perks offered by this hotel definitely blow all Courtyards in the US out of water.