Kerry Hill Tokyo

It amazes me how in the span of one generation hotel design goes from stately to statement. Twenty years ago Okura’s management decided to rip out the /11/ Japanese Tatami sleeping rooms on the 7th floor, and replace them with Victorian styled suites. This was the beginning of the end.

Standing in the new Aman lobby, it is very impressive as the ceiling reaches up very high. A giant station like lobby (a Kerry Hill design) he could have thought more about classical architecture features when papering the design of this space.

Two elevated rock gardens on either side of the lobby’s water feature, a water feature with black granite tiles. The seating scattered throughout looks impressive from above, but at eye level the scale is over imposing and the space is not intimate enough.

When you cross Okura lobby threshold you discover the perfect dimension of space. A uniquely elegant lobby designed by early modernist architect Yoshiro Taniguchi, is one of the classics. The slightly sunken space is distinguished by large Asanoha patterned windows.

The low seats make you feel at ease, and the scale is just right. The urushi tables add an elegance to the space and you feel right at home when you step into this space.

The building will be torn down and reconstructed in the summer of 2015. I am hopeful the new building will resemble the classic designs of Taniguchi. /fingers crossed/