All in all, it was a good effort from M&S – the first advert was the best out of the three here!
|Smile Hotel Nihombashi in Kayabacho|
Our room came with two beds as requested online. They were comfortable, but we found the pillows a bit too weird which made my neck uncomfortable…
The bathroom is small but bearable. Bathtub is useable but make sure you bend your knees otherwise you will have a hard time bathing. The shower is pretty good and not hard to use, but make sure you switch on the extractor fan as it gets hot in there. You get free goodies like brushes, razors and some other stuff. They provide you with soap, shampoo and conditioner too.
Kettles, TV, cups, coffee sachets, hairdryer and fridge is all in there for you to use. They provide slippers for you to use (I took a few).
Laundry is quite easy to find. It costs 300 yen (~£1.89) to do your main laundry. So make sure you have 3×100 yen coins. To get the washing powder you have to go to main reception and it costs 50 yen (~£0.31) for a sachet. Make sure you go to reception first!!! For the dryer it costs 100 yen (~£0.62) for about 30 minutes and an extra 5 minutes for cooling down process, BUT, on the machine (and I agree with this) that you should dry your clothes if they are thick – for 1 hour…!!
|Laundry room at Smile Hotel|
It wasn’t a bad hotel and it wasn’t a good hotel either. It was somewhere to sleep and it was practically near everything!
– lots of convenient stores nearby and it’s about a half an hour walk to Tsukiji!
The disappointing factors:
Nearest Station: Kayabacho Station
– Wear comfortable shoes or trainers as the Metro has a lot of stairs and there’s a lot of walking in the station areas… I think I stayed the same weight because I was exercising throughout. ¬,¬””
– are they really strict on rules and regulations? In some places yes, like taking your shoes off, but eating in public transport seems to be the norm (kind of) – just make sure it’s not smelly food. Yawning and sneezing seems to be ok too! But don’t do it all the time!
– can you talk on public transport? Yes… A lot of the Japanese do but quietly and politely… a lot of people were playing with their mobile devices – reading and playing games… It was just like being in Hong Kong all over again!!!!
Friday 14th November
The first one I had was a chocolate wafer one. It tasted nomilicious (or tabelicious 食べ-licious).
|Chocolate wafer sandwich|
|Some sort of salty bacon flavoured sandwich|
|On the train journey… the morning sun was bright|
|Our BA flight is waiting|
|Flying over the Russian mountains|
|Over England somewhere|
|Frost on the plane windows|
After passing security and collecting our luggage we went home by tube up to Holborn and made our way back by bus, Miss Pinky unfortunately had to wait longer for her bus which took forever. 😦
End of Day 14 and our Japan trip.
Next trip: March 2015 – we’re heading to the Americas!!! (It’s all booked, and this next trip will include Mr Picky – Miss Pinky’s other half). Can you guess where we’re going? (Actually I’m going away in February… a last minute decision!).
Miss Pinky spotted this crossing… doesn’t it look like a mini version of the Shibuya Crossing but it’s in Shimbashi… ¬_¬””
|Crossing in Shimbashi|
|Shiba dog – I want one!!|
|Tried out Stewed Five Berries… I’m sure I’ve had this before…|
Hanamasa supermarket… Nothing much in there that I liked. I preferred Aeon!
Makihara… It’s a wine store as well as a snack store…
|Mini sake… It was about 108 yen, something like that…|
Couldn’t really sleep that night but I managed 4 hours. Miss Pinky was the same… couldn’t sleep because I started snoring… 😛
End of Day 13.
Address: It’s a few doors down on the left from Smile Hotel… can’t find the address
|I think this is my favourite stationery shop in Hatchobori|
Trying to hum this note in my head… But had to use an app to play it on piano… hahahaha, quite a nice tune
|Can you play it?|
This conbini store is the only store that accepts foreign cards by the way!!
|Saw a cute opposite us|
|A small shrine|
|Green tea frappe|
Before we went to the other side to the 100 yen store we stopped and went into the Aeon Store which is about a 20 to 30 minute walk from the hotel and I bought these sandwiches on our way back. I tried all of them at the hotel.
Miss Pinky at some point decided she needed more food, so she went down to Lawson and bought some fried chicken which was smothered with cheese… And then she had to go and buy some cheesy chocolate sweets………….. (Long pause)…….. I bought a packet the next day and will blog about these chocolates separately. Watch out for that post!!
Day 13: http://asimplegeekylife.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/lost-in-tokyo-japan-2014-day-13-last.html
Next we looked around the Meiji Shrine area (as in the high street area)….
We stopped at an “Irish pub” also run by Japanese people. They had free WiFi, and I think these were well deserved drinks! I of course and JD and coke which they call JD coke. *SHRUG*
Next we headed back to the toy store we found in Ginza the other day, and we had never been to the floors above. Thankfully we did because I think Mr Bear would’ve killed me if I didn’t take these pictures!
|This is not the toy store but an 8 floor department store!|
Miss Pinky loves Frozen, so I took a picture…
|Miss Pinky’s meal|
My curry cost me less than 500 yen and Miss Pinky’s 500 yen exact (~£3.14 each)!
My geeky rating: 4/5
Address: 1 Chome-46 Nihonbashikayabacho, Chuo, Tokyo Japan
Then it was time for dessert from Lawson – thanks Miss Pinky!!
|Miss Pinky had a banana pudding (right) and I had the dessert (left)|
End of Day 11.
|Eating more buns for breakfast|
Miss Pinky was finally ready, so we headed in the opposite direction from the business area from the hotel… Basically we headed to the right side (instead of the left). It’s actually quite beautiful on this end. Very quiet and hardly any men in black.
On your way you will also see a 100 yen (~£0.63) store (but don’t forget about the additional taxes). So if you need to find some quick and easy gifts then this is the place to go to from Smile Hotel.
|100 yen store|
From here we found a bus stop. It really isn’t that hard to understand, you just need to know where the bus is going and what time it will be coming. You should probably jot down a few places in kanji although the bus LED signs inside the bus will tell you in English (just like in London ). It’s 210 yen (~£1.32) for adults and 110 yen (~£0.69) for children… cheap!!
We ended up in Tsukiji, so we took another bus heading towards Tokyo Big Site. I think we missed the stop and ended up at the last stop. But we saw a big massive monument in which I have no idea what it’s supposed to be.
We took the same bus back heading towards Tokyo Station. A lot of men in black seemed to be heading home. Lucky workers who finished at 3!
|野郎ラメン Yaro Ramen (Translation: “Bastard Ramen” … LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)|
My geeky rating: 4.5/5, but 5/5 for business peeps around the area!
Address: 野郎ラーメン 新橋駅前店 Japan, Yubinbango105-0004 Shimbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo 2-chome, 9-7
|Buy your lottery tickets here|
Back in Shimbashi Station…
And now Tokyo Station…
We took the Oedo Line heading towards Roppongi Hills.
Miss Pinky didn’t expect her cheesecake to be so different. It’s very different to the Westernized version.
|Miss Pinky’s Blueberry Cheesecake|
My pumpkin cheesecake didn’t taste too cheesy but it was quite hard and solid looking but it tasted really good! The ice coffee needed more syrup…
|Pumpkin Cheesecake and ice coffee|
My geeky rating: 5/5 (I would come back to this place again)
Address: 3 Chome-10-10 Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo, Japan
I think Komoro Soba is a branch store as I saw many of these stores around Tokyo.
|Komoro Soba in Kayabacho|
Quite astounded that they had a “standing table” for the busy people to eat their noodles and go.
But thankfully I got a seat…
My tempura prawns may look big but actually they are quite small it’s just the batter that made them look big! The soup was sour and sweetish ad the noodles were just perfect. I think I would like to try cold soba next time… ^_^
This was less than 500 yen (~£3.00)… so bloody cheap!!
Address: 小諸そば 茅場町店 1-11-3 Nihonbashikayabacho, Chuo, Tokyo Prefecture, Japan
Whilst in Pronto, Miss Pinky decided she needed Western food to keep her happy,.. although the food was good, Miss Pinky the service was still terrible… When we ordered the bill (by saying bill) they gave us beer instead… Say “check” instead, they understand that!
|Croissants with ham|
|In Tokyo Station|
|Miss Pinky said these look like mushrooms|
|Those bonsai trees are massive!|
|Be care of the mosquitoes!!|
|Map… you probably can’t see any of that…|
|Kaiten sushi (rotating sushi) 回転寿司|
It’s selve serving with the green tea in which they give you green powder on the table and then you just add your own hot water…! Wow! Saves your waitress/waiter having to pour you anything!
I had to try out natto beans once more just to make sure that I will never eat it again… Yep. I’m sure that I will never eat natto EVER again!!
We changed at Ueno Station and saw this massive giant panda doll outside…
We’re almost to the temple!!
We went the wrong way… but we went to find a loo…
Loo stop in Burger King. Sorry…. But we spotted a poster for black bun burgers. I wished I had tried one on the spot!
These dogs look hungry!
|Oden and omurice|
|Not at the right station|
Address: 華福飲店 Japan, Naka-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture Yubinbango231-0023 Yamashita-cho 192-16
Never seen a man with a hat on a street sign before!
Have you seen these criminals?!!
Miss Pinky had a bloody mary…
Miss Pinky laughed at me earlier for not realising there were signs on the stairs to say where China Town was…
My dinner… The bento is good for 369 yen (£~2.32) so cheap!!! Had a soft creamy cake, an egg (already cooked and ready to eat) and Ghana chocolate from Lotte.
|Instructions on how to break your egg…|
The long awaited post for Hello Kitty fans!!! Another extremely long post with pictures.
Friday 7th November
|Natto beans with spring onions. Ugh. *SHIVER*|
Miss Pinky had a normal breakfast… Boring!! (But with some EXTRA THICK toast!).
|At Exit 5|
Take the Keiō New Line from Shinjuku (or the Odakyu Tama Line).
|The rest of the stations are not shown on the map at the station|
You might find yourself getting distracted with all the cute things surrounding the area.
|On Hello Kitty Street ^_^|
Yatta!! We made it to Puroland!!
|That’s me walking away from Miss Pinky… I was being so eager. ^_^|
|It’s Hello Kitty’s 40th anniversary!!|
Tickets on the weekdays normally cost 3300 yen (~£20.75) but I found a coupon online which came to 3200 yen (~£20.15) per person. Yay! It’s not a lot but worth it.
|I did a skip o these stairs and Miss Pinky found that amusing ^_^|
|Hello Kitty appeared!!!!!!!!!!!!!|
More walking around…
|The toilet is magnificent too… sorry that’s me in the mirror taking a picture… I’m not a ghost!!|
|Seriously マジで！Would you really leave your child in the changing area?|
|Daiso Store… That’s Miss Pinky from the side view… 😛|
Then we found ourselves going to another department store.
Please don’t make me shop!!!!!!!!! (I didn’t thankfully).
It seems whenever we got lost someone will always ask if they could help us! Very grateful, because I think we got lost trying to get back to Kayabachō!
I ate a packet of Avocado and Cheese tortilla chips in the meantime and I think they’re ok. They could add more avocado flavour and felt it was a bit too cheesy for my liking.
|Tonkotsu Ramen Hakata Furyu|
|Lots of extra ingredients that you can add to your ramen for free|
|Barbecue deluxe ramen in creamy broth|
|Bright looking noodles|
|I finished it!|
Aaaaaah. The pork broth was the best thing ever! It reminded me of Kanada-ya’s ramen, but this was slightly better with the amount of ingredients involved. The slices of pork were thicker. And the broth was just so creamy throughout. Men were ordering extra ramen too. Wow!
So jealous of the Japanese who can just eat at ramen bars like this. Such friendly service too. Miss Pinky enjoyed it too!!
My geeky rating: 5/5
Address: 1-13-5 Shimbashi, Minato, Tokyo Prefecture 105-0004, Japan
|Plum soda (alcholic)|
I fell asleep snoring later. 😀 (Sorry Miss Pinky!).
End of Day 7.