As I have decided that I would share my whole trip to Japan with you, I must begin by a presentation of the place we stayed in when we were in Tokyo! Instead of choosing Shinjuku’s or Shibuya’s heady turmoil, we chose the (relative) tranquility of the Asakusa area.
Due to its gorgeous Senso-ji temple, it is obviously a very touristy neighbourhood but it has managed to keep its traditional soul and that is what we were looking for (I will come back to this later with more details).
The metro line also leads to many different places in the city which allowed us to go everywhere without any difficulty (For those who are terrified of the Tokyo metro, lie down on the couch, I can try to ease your fears in comments).
B:CONTE 浅草 Residential Hotel
We chose to stay in an apartment hotel (2-4-2 Asakusa Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0032), which implied enjoying the pros of a hotel, without the cons (Kitchenette and washing machine/dryer in the room, it was ideal when we wanted to stay in some nights … and a washing machine can become quite handy when you stay 3 weeks !)
Our view from the window
But « hotel » also means having the personnel at your service for any enquiries/restaurant booking/information about our tours.
Ideally situated in a small street, we were next to a Don Quijote store and a Seiyu opened 24 hours a day. (You want to buy an additional suitcase at 1 am the day (the morning?) before departure; it’s possible —> I speak from experience)
Don Quijote shop where you can find everything 24/24 !
I even went out for my bi-weekly run during my stay on the bank of Sumida river (you know my mantra: “run more to eat more”). By the way, I reveal to you two restaurant addresses of Asakusa, tested and approved by our stomachs.
2-4-2 Asakusa Taito-ku,
DAIKOKUYA Tempura (大黒屋 天婦羅 浅草本店）
We got into this place because we saw a long queue in front of it (only Japanese people which is a good sign). We gave in to temptation and we weren’t disappointed: inside, you eat on tatamis « Japanese style » which made me realise that my past suppleness is definitely gone like sake heating on a stove.
The speciality of this place is tempura and tendon (tempura disposed on a bowl of rice).
1-38-10 Asakusa, Taito-ku
Tel: +81 3 3844 1111
NOBU Steak House (ステーキハウス のぶ)
My favorite address as we came back twice. Owned by very endearing couple: the owner seemed a bit bad tempered at first sight.
None of them speak any English (nore French) and despite my poor notions of Japanese, I don’t know why, we managed to understand and appreciate each other (he even offered me the panda candies of my last article!)
This place’s speciality is the omu rice (Omelette with rice coated with tomato sauce, meat sauce and stuffed with beef) : this may seem simple on paper but this dish is an absolute delight. And, the fact that we could see this couple prepare it in front of us gave more charm to it.
We also tasted their beef steak, cooked on a hot plate: so tender ! and all that was not very expensive as 150gr of beef, tender like my heart (with soup and soy) cost us only 1580 yens, the equivalent of 13 euros. The omu rice cost 980 yens (7 euros) and is quite filling!
NOBU Steak House
1-36-7 Asakusa, Taito-ku
Tel : +81 066-9675-49879
Have a nice digestion! We’ll meet again soon for Day 1 of the travel book, with a visit of the surroundings! (English translation by Daphné)