Konnichiwa! Welcome to the photo tour of B-Site Akihabara apartment, our accommodation for our Tokyo trip we took about a month ago. Our apartment is the Studio Type A.
The washing machine/dryer greets us at the door. Right next to it are all its modern conveniences pals — stove, cooker hood, sink, refrigerator and microwave oven. They’ve thoughtfully added English translations on all the buttons but we still needed to read the manual to use this mother. On top of the washer are bedroom slippers and two sachets of washing powder.
Stuff in the cabinet near the sink and stove. Top picture: in the overhead cabi – 2 of each large bowls, cereal bowls, large plates, smaller plates, mugs, OJ glasses, wine glasses, forks, spoons, teaspoons, chopsticks; ladle, flipper. Middle pic: medium non-stick frying pan, saucepan, bowls, dish rack. Bottom pic: National rice cooker, electric kettle and chopping board still in its plastic packaging.
Right next to the fridge, a cupboard with additional domestic appliances — iron, ironing board, vacuum cleaner, hangers, weighing scale, hairdryer. Upon taking this photo we realised that we are one hanger short of the 10 we’re supposed to have (one was hung in the bathroom). A quick call solved the problem. Taking these photos proved useful somehow! ^^
Okay, let’s see the bedroom. The small, cozy bedroom. The bed is a semi-double. It’s nice and snug for 2 average-sized persons who don’t mind each other’s body heat (make your own conclusions). Under the bed are fleece blankets and extra sheets. By the side we have a writing desk, chair and two lined waste bins. Housekeeping comes every 2 weeks so you’ll need to do your own trash most of the time so make sure you separate the paper, plastics, etc here. Rubbish collection area is at the ground floor. The green note on the bed shows when the room was last made and the next housekeeping schedule (once every two weeks).
Television is by Victor. A little googling shows that Victor = JVC, which is short for Victor Company of Japan. All the while we thought that Victor was a Chinese knock off of JVC! ^^
On the table: telephone/fax machine, CD player, clock, cordless phone, remote controls for the TV, cable box, DVD player and air-conditioner. It is possible that you don’t ever see a member of the staff on your stay here, not even during check in (you’re given a code to retrieve the keys to the apartment). They send you messages via fax or phone calls.
View from the bed. The door beside the TV leads to the emergency exit/small balcony with a view of Akihabara/possible noise induced hearing loss. “What do you mean by that?” you ask.
View from the balcony. That green thing is an active train line. Caveat: If you stay here, there will be noise coming from the trains. The person from B-SITE did warn us about the noise from the train lines before we confirmed our booking.
The bathroom is directly opposite the kitchenette. The vanity unit – sink, tap button to adjustable water spray, toothbrushes, tissue box, cotton buds, soap bar, mini bottles of shower gel, shampoo and conditioner.
A small bathtub. I think it’s about the same size as the one in Oakwood Apartment Shinjuku.
The throne – Toto Washlet with built-in bidet system. Framed to show the extra toilet rolls and various light bulbs provided.
This toilet comes with a sink. The water you wash your hands with will be recycled for flushing. I’ve read about this before but didn’t get to see to experience it on our last trip to Japan. It’s kinda cool.
Small bath tub, mirror, shower head. Speaking of shower heads, I hated the scene in Lost in Translation where Bob Harris tries to raise the level of his shower head in his hotel bathroom only to find out that the highest it can go is only up his shoulders when obviously that thing can go much higher than that. And we’ve stayed in that same hotel (Park Hyatt Tokyo). And oh, there are a lot of tall Japanese kids. Stop perpetuating the stereotype Sofia Coppola! </rant>
B-SITE Akihabara wasn’t our first choice for accommodation in Japan. We only looked for alternatives when we found out Oakwood Apartments, which we stayed at the last time we were in Tokyo, are not taking bookings for stays less than 30 days anymore.
We definitely wouldn’t mind staying here again. For the price we paid (we managed to negotiate a shorter term stay at the same rate for a monthly stay) it’s really value for money. The apartment is small but very clean with modern furnishings. The main drawback is the noise coming from the nearby train tracks. This may be the deal breaker for some but Dari has lived near an MRT station so it really is not much of a big deal to him. The train stops running after midnight. I usually collapse in exhaustion at about 11pm.
Other than that there’s not much else to complain about – everything works and location is good, especially if you’re into electronics or otaku culture. There are a number of cheap eats nearby and not forgetting the Donki outlet (Don Quijote) just a few minutes walk away.