With its national vaccination rate still in the single digits, Japan has yet to emerge from the pandemic. A state of emergency is, in fact, still in place for Tokyo. A combination of exasperation with the slow pace of vaccination, difficulty maintaining constant compliance with lock-down measures, and rising temperatures are conspiring to give many a serious dose of cabin fever.
While people who live in countries that are approaching herd immunity like the U.S. and the U.K. are finally starting to travel again and spend more time outdoors, for many would-be travelers and outdoor enthusiasts in Japan, it is likely to take at least a few more months to feel comfortable again venturing far from home. So, especially for those in Japan’s big cities who are growing increasingly restless but at the same time being encouraged not to travel to the countryside for fear of spreading the coronavirus, what can be done safely in the meantime to keep you from climbing the walls?
No Need to Rough It
Well, while a staycation at home may do the trick for some, for those who simply need to get out of the house to get some fresh air, there is a creative solution available right in the heart of Tokyo—and it comes complete with all of the creature comforts that you would expect from an upscale hotel.
120-year-old Coleman—of camping fame—has partnered with the Hilton Tokyo Odaiba, a well-appointed hotel located on the waterfront of Tokyo Bay, to launch the “Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman.” Just 15 minutes away from the city center, now you can enjoy “an authentic camping experience” from the comfort of your hotel room without being affected by the weather.
Check out Our “Camping” Experience in Odaiba
As Julian had, in particular, a craving for S’mores and Yasu promised not to ignite the fire pit, Japan Insider was granted special access to “Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman.” Check out their video to get a better idea of what to expect.
The Hilton Tokyo Odaiba will provide you with a huge 80 square meter room with a private balcony about twice the size of a standard room from which to establish your own base camp. It features a 180-degree view of the Rainbow Bridge, Tokyo Tower, and Tokyo Bay. Devoid of mosquitos, you can even enjoy the ever-changing view of Tokyo while soaking in the large bathtub perched on a bed of artificial grass.
After sunset you can observe the moon and stars through an astronomical telescope in a quiet, noiseless night under the shade of a secret base in the green room.
“Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman” is targeted toward families, couples, or friends who desire a quiet atmosphere lit only by lanterns in the middle of Tokyo Bay. Only one special room is available each night, and this promotion runs now through December 12, 2021 (the special room won’t be available from July 1st to August 15th, 2021.)
As you can imagine, it does not come cheap. The fee is 79,428 Japanese yen (approximately US $725) per room/night (double occupancy), but it is well worth it. The cost to add a third person is 7,458 yen ($68). The room charge includes a buffet breakfast and “free” room service of six beverages (one sparkling wine and five soft drinks) conveniently stored in—what else—a Coleman icebox. You will also be served a S’mores-style original dessert served in the room, which definitely helps justify the cost. “Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman” guests are provided with a 20% discount to hunt for their dinner at any of the hotel’s restaurants.
There is, though, no need to pitch a tent, as the room is furnished with two large beds, a bathroom, a separate shower room, and a lavatory which has toilet paper—no need for you to have to forage for leaves! It also comes, as you would expect, with a wide assortment of camping accessories from Coleman, including chairs, a table, shades, an LED lantern, and a fire pit that features the sounds and lights of a natural fire. (Please note that the fire pit is just a decoration and, therefore, cannot be lit with an actual fire.)
If “Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman” is just a little too pricey for your taste, another option would be to barbeque out on the deck of the Hilton Tokyo Odaiba.
For just 11,000 yen ($100), a party of two will be provided with everything needed to BBQ in style. You just have to cook your meal by yourself! You can choose from either a beef BBQ or a seafood option.
Social Distance in Style
Be honest! This does sound pretty fun—albeit with a hefty price tag. At least until the country gets back to normal and travel restrictions are eased, “Room de Camp Collaboration with Coleman” would provide the perfect get-away. You could social distance in style, get a taste of camping, and relax surrounded by all of the creature comforts of a fancy hotel–all the while enjoying some good company.
Mark Kennedy is a native of Chicago who has spent more than 20 years living, studying, and working in Japan. By day he is Country Head - Business Development, Nexdigm - Japan but becomes a writer after work. Mark is a lifelong student of the Japanese language and culture. He loves to travel throughout the country. Mark also is the author behind the "Real Gaijin" Substack, countryroadsjapan.com, as well as the Country Roads Japan and Coastal Sailing Japan YouTube channels. Photo supplied courtesy of the author who had stopped to check out the free-roaming horses and cows about half-way up to the summit of Mt. Aso, an active volcano in the center of Kyushu.