What better way to discover Tokyo, then to try something new. As a hotel reviewer, I’ve seen some ridiculous hotels, but the Japanese certainly know how to keep things interesting.  In Japan there are over 30,000 Love hotels spread across the Island, most of them found in busy Tokyo and Osaka, also referred to as romance hotels, fashion hotels, and amusement hotels. While on a recent trip to Tokyo, I realized time is money and to the Japanese where living quarters are small and privacy is hard pressed at home, why pay for an entire night at a hotel when you only really need it for a couple hours? The Love Hotel concept is not only amusing but also practical. For those who live at home with the parents and need some time to get away, often frequented by cheating lovers, young or old couples, businessmen, these hotels serve a purpose in a society where discretion is utmost.

The Experience:

Love hotels cater to travelers interested in a place to engage in sex, plain and simple.  Rather than a front desk you walk into a large room with a menu on the wall, if the photo is lit up, then the room is available, press the button and a unidentifiable person will give you a key from behind a darkened window pane, no need to give your name, as your stay is anonymous.  Renting rooms by the hour or half a day, you pay only for what you use. Inside your mini bar is stocked with sex toys, condoms and even costume rentals, often mirrors on the ceilings, rotating beds, a transparent bathtub for 2 and karaoke on a flat screen.

The Rules:

Love hotels rent only to heterosexual couples. Threesomes are a “No three! No three!” as I heard one Japanese lady describe it to one patron.  Love hotels will go as far as hiding customers’ cars, blocking their license plates and covering up signage to the hotel.

My Favorite Love Hotel Rooms:

Hello Kitty S&M
Complete with Hello Kitty Vibrators and Hello Kitty bondage room, at the Adonis love hotel in Osaka.  For Students the classroom where the teacher can punish the naughty ones.  The Doctors Office for a complete examination.  While the whole notion of Love Hotels sounds kinky, it’s quite normal to the Japanese. For the traveler, a trip to Japan is not complete without a check in…have fun!

Stella Blue