I will never get tired doing the touristy thing in Tokyo.
After covering the “9th Mr. & Ms. Thai-Philippines in Japan” held at Camellia Hall in Kameido, boyfriend drove me to some of Tokyo’s most fashionable places - Ginza, Omotesando, Harajuku and Shibuya, where we walked around, took pictures and enjoyed the beautiful spring weather.
First stop: Ginza. It is considered as one of the most luxurious shopping districts in the world.
Second stop: Harajuku, where the old and the new Japan meet and blend for your senses.
Last stop: Shibuya, the fun and fashionable place for the Japanese youth.
The Filipino-Japanese Journal is set to cover one of the most anticipated fashion events in the world, the Japan Fashion Week (Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo) from March 17-23.
Out of the 48 participating brands that will showcase their 2013-14 A/W collections, The Filipino-Japanese Journal will attend the runway shows of famous fashion designers Araisara, Kamishima Chinami and Jotaro Saito.
The Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo 2013-14 A/W is a seven-day, by invitation only event to be held at Shibuya Hikarie, Mercedes-Benz Connection and other popular venues around Tokyo. It is organized by the Japan Fashion Week Organization.
Tel: +81 (3) 3406-5261
(Photos courtesy of Japan Fashion Week Organization)
While sorting out the files on my computer, I found a photo of tonkatsu (deep fried pork cutlet), which made me realize that I still haven’t written about my dining experience at Katsu Kobo Wako in Roppongi Hills, Tokyo.
Katsu Kobo Wako is a famous tonkatsu restaurant chain in Japan, with over 250 branches across the country.
According to Wako’s website, tonkatsu originated from western restaurants in the Meiji Era over a century ago. The popular cooking style of the time was to broil the meat with lard or butter. Over time this changed to a deep-frying style similar to that of tempura.
The Roppongi Hills branch is quite small but exudes an air of coziness appropriate to its location.
We ordered their lunch sets Moriawase Zen and Katsukobo Zen.
Moriawase Zen (1,080 yen). Pork fillet cutlet, fried shrimp, fried cake of minched kurobuta pork and Japanese beef
Katsukobo Zen (980 yen). Pork fillet cutlet
Wako uses imported pork from the USA.
Their tonkatsu sauce is an original recipe made from tomatoes, apples, onions and different kinds of spices. Dressing is non-oil made from homegrown citrus.
All set menus come with refillable tea, white rice, shredded cabbage and shijimi-jiru (miso soup with freshwater clams).
- Rice was a bit overcooked. I wonder what has happened to their rice robot.
- Katsu was soft and tender, as I’d expected it to be.
- Good service
Tokyo, Minato-ku Roppongi 6-4-1 Roppongi Hills Metro Hat B2
During one of my trips to Tokyo, boyfriend took me to Akasaka Palace also known as the State Guesthouse (Geihinkan) in Moto, Akasaka.
At first, I thought it was a luxurious hotel that looks like the Palace of Versailles in France.
(Photo taken at Tobu World)
Built in neo-baroque style, the Akasaka Palace was first constructed as the Crown Prince’s official residence in 1909. It was remodeled into a State Guest House in 1974 to provide accommodations to state and official guests including presidents, prime ministers and monarchs from countries all over the world. In 2009, the palace was designated as Japan’s national treasure.
(Photo credit: Cabinet Office)
The Geihinkan is open to the public once a year (during summer).
Aside from Tenya, there’s another fast food restaurant in Japan that you should check out. It is called Marukame Udon, which specializes in homemade udon (wheat flour noodles).
Marukame Udon is not difficult to find since it has hundreds of branches all over the country.
See how the cook prepares the udon? Great, isn’t it?! He would then grab a bowl and toss in a handful of fresh, thick udon (hot or cold) with your choice of toppings.
How to order: Grab a tray. Fall in line. Choose your food. Pay.
Bukkake Udon (280 yen)
They also offer different kinds of tempura that will surely wow your taste buds.
Ebi Tempura (130 yen)
- Tempura was crispy, fried to perfection.
- Udon was thoroughly cooked; broth was flavorful.
- Highly recommended
Tenya is a well-known tempura (battered and deep-fried vegetables or seafood) restaurant, with more than 100 branches, all over Japan.
Since its conception in 1989, it has been praised as one of the country’s most popular dining places for tempura lovers because of its hearty, yet affordable 500 yen tempura donburi (rice bowl dish).
Ever since my boyfriend introduced me this restaurant, it became a constant favorite. We frequent the Ginza branch, (Kusano Bldg. 1F, 3-9-4, Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo; Tel. 03-5565-6903), which is actually one of Tenya’s best stores. It can accommodate up to 30 diners.
Ocha or Tea (free)
Tendon (500 yen). Prawn, squid, silver whiting, pumpkin & string beans
Excellent Tendon (580 yen). Prawn, eggplant, pumpkin & string beans
Tenya also serves Udon set.
- Tempura was very delicious.
- Sauce was very tasty.
- Quick service
- Friendly waiters
- Easy to find
No matter how busy I am, I always make sure that I spend quality time with my nephews, whom I love so dearly.
During my short vacay in Tokyo, beau and I took them to Shibuya, the fun and fashionable place for the Japanese youth.
First stop: Hachiko Square
Although they are familiar with the story of Hachiko, it was their first time to visit the statue.
Next destination: Shibuya Crossing
We spent half an hour just taking these photos at the busy crossing.
Last stop: Shotengai
One cool thing to do in Shibuya is window-shopping. And that’s what we did!
That day, we went home with smiles on our faces. =)
We had a fleeting glance at the Tokyo Sky Tree when it was still under construction in 2010. But that time, we already knew that the tower would be a sight to behold once finished.
In September 2012, we got to see the completed tower up-close! We were awestruck by its tallness, elegance and sophistication. Three qualities that can entice local and foreign tourists to visit Japan.
There’s always something new to discover in Odaiba.
While re-exploring the futuristic district of Odaiba, we passed the new Takoyaki Museum located on the top floor of Decks shopping mall.
When we entered the museum, we found stalls that sell freshly cooked takoyaki (little balls of fried dough stuffed with octopus, which originated in Osaka).
Each stall offers different flavors of takoyaki.
We noticed that the place was more of a food court than a museum. But if you love eating takoyaki, this is the place to be!
Every trip requires careful itinerary planning, especially when it’s your first time flying out to a foreign country.
Though I’ve been to Japan countless times, I still make sure that I have a list of the places that I want to see every time I go there.
One of the places I revisited was Odaiba, a futuristic, man-made island in Tokyo Bay. Actually, I already lost count of the number of times I’ve explored Odaiba, but I just couldn’t forget how marvelous the place was, particularly at night when it was all lit up! Babalik-balikan mo talaga!
Odaiba is a leading tourist destination in Japan. Some of the attractions here include the magnificent Rainbow Bridge, which is highly regarded as the symbol and pride of Tokyo Bay, shopping malls like Aquacity, Decks, Venus Fort and a lot more!
For the second time, The Filipino-Japanese Journal will be attending one of the most famous and most influential fashion events in the world, the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo (Japan Fashion Week).
41 participating brands will be unveiling their S/S 2013 collections. Shiroma, Cune, Kamishima Chinami, Cynthia Rowley, Naoshi Sawayanagi and American Apparel - are just a few of the top name designers and labels we’ll be covering during the eight-day, by invitation only event.
The Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo S/S 2013 will be happening on October 13-20 at Shibuya Hikarie, Mercedes-Benz Connection and other popular venues around Tokyo. It is organized by the Japan Fashion Week Organization +81 (3) 3406-5261 firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more info, visit: http://tokyo-mbfashionweek.com/en/
Check back for photos and updates.
(Photos courtesy of Japan Fashion Week Organization)
Two years after I first saw Gundam’s statue at Shiokaze Park, I had the chance to see it again at the newly opened DiverCity (diversity + city) Tokyo Plaza, a commercial complex situated in the city’s Odaiba waterfront district.
DiverCity Tokyo Plaza houses three large-scale entertainment facilities including Gundam Front Tokyo, the world’s first permanent Gundam indoor theme park that provides a full experience of the world of “Mobile Suit Gundam”.
Standing proud and tall at its new home, the 18-meter statue seems to guard the facility where fashion boutiques and dining establishments are located.
Some good news for Gundam fans, eh?
(Photos by Din Eugenio)