After the tough decision of having to decide which flight configuration and flight timing would work for us, I had another dilemma looming in the horizon..where to stay in Tokyo?
Here are some of the options we had and the rationale/ pros and cons behind each one.
- Stay at a Disney Hotel for 11 days.
🙂 Minimize the need to move hotels and keep us really close to Disney on the 4 days we were intending to visit (perfect for going back for afternoon naps!)
😦 Visiting Tokyo on the other 7 days would be a hassle, with multiple train stops and at least 45 minutes travel time each way.
- Stay at a Disney Hotel for half our trip and move to a city hotel for the other half.
🙂 Minimise travel time on a day to day basis
😦 Lose one entire day when we change hotels and we would have to visit Disney over a weekend and battle the crowds. [Read about our tips to surviving Disneyland Tokyo with kids]
- Stay at a City hotel for 11 days
🙂 Easy travel for most part of our 11 day holiday
😦 Almost impossible to go back for afternoon naps on our 4 Days at Disneyland and lose out on a lot of the Disney experience
So which would you have chosen?:)
We eventually chose Option 1 which I know is probably not the most popular choice but we really cherish our naptimes :p (well rested kids = happy kids = happy parents) So yes we chose to struggle on most days and manage our itinerary within means.
We ended up booking a room at Hilton Tokyo Bay which although is not an Official Disney Hotel (The Disney hotels are connected to either Disneyland or Disney Sea) but it was fairly well-connected by a monorail line which served the Disney area (think our local LRT).
The hotel provided a free shuttle service to the nearby Bayside monorail station. We would usually take the shuttle bus to and from Bayside except at night when it tends to get really crowded. For those peak times, we would opt to take a nice slow 5 minutes stroll to our hotel.
Bayside monorail station would bring you to 3 other stations – Disneyland station, Disney Sea station and the main Maihama Station which would connect you to the greater Metro lines. The monorail takes about 15 minutes to complete an entire loop so it was really convenient and fast!
The hotel also provided a direct shuttle service to Maihama Station for those who are heading out to the city. This was how we travelled out to the city on the other 7 days. This is also where you would find Ikispiari Mall, where we settled a lot of our meals when we were not heading out to the city.
The Hilton Tokyo Bay had several room types – 1 of which was the Happy Magic Room. The Happy Magic rooms are situated on their own level which was decorated in a Magic Forest Theme. It was a real treat for the kids and they would ‘greet’ the little dragon 3D holograms found near our lift lobby every time we took the lift.
The room we had was really awesome for 3 main reasons. The room was HUGE compared to many of the city hotels in Tokyo and honestly even Singapore!!! Yes, we had 3 queen sized beds put side by side and so we didn’t have to squeeze or worry about rolling off the bed. There was also ample playing space for the kids and our huge suitcases.
There were little tricks in the room to entertain the kids, like a magic mirror and a giant key to unleash the ‘magic’.
We also enjoyed our 180 degree sea view which offered us a glimpse of Mount Fuji on a nice clear day.
While the hotel does not offer room service, it does have a well-stocked convenience store where we would purchase our daily beverage and snacks replenishment. They also have a take-away deli which sells hot food, pastries and desserts, and they offer room delivery for an additional 20% charge. This was how we settled our dinner upon arrival and the food was pretty decent (tasty spaghetti bolognaise, curry rice, kiddy bento). The photo doesn’t do the food justice because I was too famished to take a good shot :p We ordered from the deli every time we were too lazy to eat out and the kids even requested to go back to the hotel for the deli food on a few occasion. 🙂
While it was really quite a hassle to travel out to the city from the hotel (for 7 days!!) Reality was a lot tougher than what I imagined in my head :p That being said, I would definitely still choose to stay at this hotel, the next time we visit Tokyo Disneyland (unless of course we decide to stay at the Official Disney Hotel 😉 )
The Hilton Tokyo Bay is a real value for money hotel especially if you book early..:) (Think $300 a night vs $900 a night!) It is after all a Hilton right?