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at the The Westin Tokyo
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Standard Westin Experience
Feb 14th, 2020
My wife and I stayed at the Westin Tokyo on the first leg of a round the world trip in February 2020. We paid for five nights in advance. I am a Bonvoy Gold Elite member. Unfortunately due to a weather delay in San Francisco we missed our connecting flight to Tokyo by 15 minutes. As soon as we learned we were going to delayed by a full day, I called the hotel and spoke to the night desk clerk. She couldn’t alter my reservation to change it to four nights and issue me a refund even though I was calling more than 24 hours before I would have arrived. She needed to consult with the day manager which is understandable. But since I was going to be in transit they told me to straighten things out when I arrived. When we finally arrived in Tokyo and we are checking in, the pleasant but inexperienced desk clerk asked me sign for an arrival date 24 hours in the past. they were charging me for five nights even though my arrival date was off by one day and we would only be staying 4 nights. When I asked the front desk clerk about this she seemed confused meaning that my check-in date had not been altered. Evidently no issue with my reservation been relayed to the front desk staff. We asked to speak to the manager who promptly came out to resolve the issue. He was aware of the issue but was reticent to issue a refund. However, to his credit, As a gold elite member he offered me hotel credit instead of a refund. This was OK since we were going to be there for four days and we’re going to eat in the restaurant and use spa services which would’ve eaten up the refund anyway. The hotel has a nice lobby. The rooms were large, nicely appointed with decent bathrooms. The rooms are like American sized hotel rooms rather than the typical small Tokyo hotel rooms that are described on Tripadvisor. In other news, be aware that any notations that you make in the Bonvoy app (as far as special requests go) get completely ignored so just make those requests when you get to the hotel. I’ve had this experience over and over again at hotels within the Bonvoy system. Also my experience with using your phone as your key never works either. I’m not sure if that’s just something unique to the nature of the reservations that I made or if it’s endemic to their entire reservation system since the change to Bonvoy system. The buffet at the Westin was OK, typical hotel faire and certainly not spectacular. I found that the bed (in my room at least) was rather hard. The linens were great as usual at the Westin but usually the heavenly bed experience is heavenly and this was ....not so much. The staff was uniformly pleasant although there was some degree of language barrier but for the most part everyone was able to communicate fairly well in English. I did stop by the concierge desk to ask about having my luggage transported from the hotel to Narita airport. The lead concierge did not know the answers to my questions which I thought was unusual given that luggage transport between hotels and airports is relatively common in Tokyo. However she was Conscientious about following up on my questions and getting me the answers. She actually wrote a letter with the answers to the questions and various options for getting from the hotel to the Narita airport. I thought it was nice that she went the extra mile to actually write the letter and include the pricing of the various options. However I thought that the answers that she came up with was a little unusually pricey: ¥67,000 for transporting my wife and myself and our bags from the Westin hotel to the Narita airport by private taxi transport. That’s US$610. Well I don’t mind paying for convenience but I don’t want to buy the equivalent of another plane ticket just to go from the hotel to the airport. We eventually opted for a taxi from our hotel to the Shinagawa station and then from Shinagawa to Narita airport using the Narita express train. Taxi was approximately ¥2000 (US$20) And two one-way tickets from Shinagawa station to Narita airport terminal two (international terminal) set us back about ¥3000for the Narita express train tickets and another ¥3000 for the standard fare that goes along with that. So be aware if you want to do that you need to buy two separate tickets —one for the standard fare from Shinagawa station to Narita airport and one for the reserve seats on the Narita express. I would advise buying those train tickets in advance so you are guaranteed your seats and know what time your train is departing. So total out-of-pocket for us to get five bags and two people from the Westin hotel in Tokyo to the Narita airport terminal two was approximately ¥8000 or $72 USD. The trip from the hotel to the station took approximately 20 minutes by taxi and the trip from the station to the airport on the train was rapid even though Narita is quite a distance out of the city, it took 1 hour and 20 minutes. With the transfer of the bags from the taxi to the train allow for an additional 15 minutes, so total transit time would run you about one hour and 50 minutes. Now you may ask why not just take the Ebisu station train which is nearer to the hotel. Because that is at least a brisk 15 minute walk and that’s with moving walkways. That is not something that you want to do with five or six bags in tow if you are time-limited to get to the airport. And you still have to get from Ebisu to Shinagawa station which is another several stops. So doing that waste 15 minutes to get to the train station, more minutes waiting for the train and then the transit to Shinagawa to catch the Narita express. Easier to just take a cab directly from the Hotel to Shinagawa, it saves time and effort for $20. We made the walk from the hotel to the Ebisu station multiple times per day. It got old pretty fast. we don’t mind walking, it just adds up at the end of the day when you’re already tired. All in all if I were to stay in Tokyo again I would choose a hotel closer to a train station than a 15 minute walk. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Wonderful hotel, excellent experience!
Feb 4th, 2020
Stayed here on a trip with three of us (all female). Extremely safe, clean and beautiful hotel. We booked a suite with club lounge and the room did not disappoint. I am a titanium elite level traveler and this hotel definitely acknowledged the loyalty and provided excellent service. Our room had an amazing view of Tokyo. Jim Woodrow was a standout in all things service. He provided us with a converter, a luggage rack and a roll away. He gave us great recommendations for a local restaurant. Jim went over and above to make our stay fantastic! We were unaware of the covered access from the hotel until late in our stay and we heard about it from Jim. The breakfast included a large variety of choices, American and Japanese. It was an easy walk to the train stations. The only thing that could be improved is the food and service in the Club Lounge. Some of the food in the evening was old and stale and the choices were not good. There is access to the 22nd floor for complimentary drinks that were well crafted (for titanium level and maybe other levels?) that we really enjoyed. Would love to stay here again. Thank you Westin Tokyo for your excellence, you made our vacation a dream come true! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Great blend of old world and new
Jan 19th, 2020
I was literally in this hotel for four hours to sleep but check in was easy, the location was great, and I really wish I could have spent more time! The room was fabulous with everything I needed as someone traveling for business. The staff spoke English perfectly, which was a relief to me after running into some issues on other legs of the trip. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Spacious standard rooms and good service
Jan 11th, 2020
Compared with the Marriot in Shinagawa, the rooms were very spacious, and since it is its own dedicated building, the entire first floor is well adorned and makes it easy to find where the check-in reception is. When we checked in, they had no more king-sized bed rooms available, and offered us a twin room (both twins were large queen sized beds) and free breakfast at the buffet for two. It was a pretty good deal. In the evening I went for a jog around the hotel, and when I got back, a staff member at the entrance noticed I had been running and handed me a face towel and bottle of water. It was a much-appreciated sentiment. In general the staff is very polite and pro-active in offering greetings and creating a welcoming atmosphere. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
Struggles during peak season
Jan 11th, 2020
Stayed at hotel during new year after reading positive reviews on elite benefits. Usually a pretty easy going Titanium Elite, but found a stay a little disappointing, and 3 stars probably generous for the particular stay. 1) Location's not particularly convenient if arriving by train with luggage. Took Shinkansen from Kyoto, by the time I'm at Ebisu station, I realized it's going to be 10-15min walk. Decided to take a taxi from there but got in an awkward moment where I felt bad for the driver who was waiting at station for pick-up given its such a short ride. 2) Lounge access offered from 5:30-7:30, but main lounge had a waitlist so was recommended to a backup temporary lounge in the Emerald room - Fine. Got there, but was again ask to wait until a table is set up - Okay. Finally my wife and I got seated, we went to get food, and within 2 minutes, our table was mistakenly given away to another guest and we were ask to transfer to a different table - Really? If this was not already bad enough, we realized that the food ran out (see picture), and this was when we arrived smack in the middle of the evening snack period at 6:30pm. In the end, we just took two soda and left. 3) Learned our lesson the first time, arrived extra early for breakfast. Great decision because by the time we finished at around 7:30am, there was already a line of around two dozen people The only credit I can give to the hotel is that at least the staff try to be polite, even though my problems are clearly not solved, and that the rooms are on the more spacious side for Tokyo. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER
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