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Old August 11th, 2004, 08:02 PM   #1
dom
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Tokyo from a gaijin

Sorry, its been ages in coming but here are the best pictures that i've taken of Tokyo.

Waiting for the train to Tokyo.....awww




A warm up, heres one of Mount Fuji....



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ROPPONGI - Japan's party town (for gaijin) and Embassy land
------------------------------------------------------------

Roppongi Hills tower, one of the most expensive buildings ever built. Located in Roppongi, the gaijin (foreigner) party capital of Japan. Has some of the largest floor plates of any skyscraper over 800 feet tall. Mammoth. I call it the Sumo tower.



Here's a F355 F1 in Roppongi Hills, nice car, seriously nice neighbourhood.



Lamborghini dealers in Roppongi. I was skeptical of the new Murcielago, until i saw it through this window....



Roppongi's main street with the Tokyo Tower in the background. The Tokyo Tower is the tallest metal latticed tower in the world. It is suprisingly slender. Obviously been following the Japanese diet.

Close up..


Not entirely sure what this building is but i like it anyway. Here's a day shot of it and a spot of spring cleaning to the glass....


and a night shot...




And in the daytime....

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SHINJUKU - Japan's modern centre. Site of the Tokyo Government and the world's busiest station.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Shinjuku, one of the capitals of the world, no doubt about it.

My first photo in Tokyo. The interior lcd screen of the Yamanote (Circle) line.
What have we been doing in the UK???!! I wish JR ran the London Underground. 190 yen (90p) per trip. Japan's railways are 50 years ahead of Britain's.


This is OUR kind of sign!

NOT my photo, this is the clear view!!!

And at sunset, why this isn't rated as one of the top skylines in the world is beyond me. Also NOT my photo!


A picture of Yodobashi Camera, the largest camera shop on earth and the TMGB in the background. If this photo inspires deja vu it should because it features the end of the film Lost in Translation with Bill Murray swanning around.


Here's a hazy, smoggy view of the Shinjuku skyline from the Bunkyo Civic Centre.

And another...

And another zoomed out...


Ok, here the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building (TMGB). Big buildings are needed to manage a big city. They polarise opinion, like the Umeda Sky Building. You either love them or hate them. They are by Tange Kenzo, who also designed the Landmark tower, Park Hyatt and the Yoyogi national stadium for the 1964 Olympics where he made his name.

I love the TMGBs but think they looks seriously big brother and sinister. If they were black they'd be terrifying! But they do look unmistakeably Japanese due to the chipboard design. And they have a great silouhette.

Although these towers should be lit properly at night, they are undeniably impressive. I don't which is better, the TMGB or the Landmark tower in Yokohama.

Close up of the speakers...






This one is of the Sompo Japan HQ and the Nomura Securities HQ. The Sompo Japan building is famous for holding 'The Sunflowers' painting by Van Gogh, one of the most expensive paintings ever bought on auction. Nomura are Japan's largest stockbrokers. They were originally from Osaka, but alas moved to Tokyo after WW2.


Another one of Sompo.


Interesting sculpture in Shinjuku on a really sunny day. It's owned by Nomura and runs in a kind of perpetual motion with a pendulum. Clever.


Sunset reflections from a window....


Nowhere in the world is too big for a mini! Including Shinjuku! Here's a lovely example.



The Park Hyatt Shinjuku, the number 1 hotel in Japan at the moment. One of its claims to fame is that it was the set for most of the film Lost In Translation. The bar at the top, the New York Grill is one of the best i have ever been to. I wish i had a picture of the view of the top but it wasnt the kind of place you'd pull out your camera...celebs and power brokers galore etc. From the windows on the 53rd floor you could see loads of neon, sunset views of Mount Fuji, Yokohama and looking at Tokyo Tower and the Tokyo Government building in the eye. Wowzer.



There you go, I wasn't lying. You can clearly see the Landmark tower and the rest of Yokohama Minato Mirai from the top of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Buildings. Its city all the way in between. Kawasaki is inbetween. Tokyo is absolutely insane, 35 million people....an economy approaching that of the UK...its just the busiest, biggest and wealthiest city in the world. Mind-boggling. Sorry Parisians, New Yorkers and Londoners; Tokyo makes your city look like a village!

Looking at the Sumitomo, Nomura, Sompo and Pentax buildings from the TMGB at night. All of those towers are close to or near 700 feet tall. The TMGB is over 800 feet tall. All are within 300 metres of each other. This is one of the greatest skyscraper clusters anywhere.



Looking down on Shinjuku station from the TMGB. Tried to make the shot arty by angling it. Not sure if its worked or not!

Close up...


Shinjuku Station, south exit, Japan's modern nerve centre.

She looks very pissed off...i dont blame her, office hours in Japan are crippling.



Kabukichuo, Shinjuku's nightlife district, strictly for the natives. Playboy bunnies and wasted Salarymen. The most sleazy place i've ever been bar the red light district in Amsterdam.



A very freaky window display in Shinjuku, made me scared of cloning that's for sure....



Sunset in Shinjuku, looking through a skyscraper alley. The TMGB is on the left.



------------------------------------------------------------------------
AKASAKA - Most of Japan's bureaucracy is done here. Numerous TV station HQs and fancy hotels.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here's one of the Prudential Tower in Akasaka from Roppongi. Reminds me of the Amoco building in Chicago, but half-size.



-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SHINAGAWA - Tertiary office district just south of Ginza and the Shiodome.
Home to the world hq's of Toshiba, Hitachi and NEC.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

The NEC Supertower, one of the buildings that first got me interested in skyscrapers. I liked it so much i'll post 3 photos of it.






--------------------------------------------------------------------------
BUNKYO-KU - Tokyo's Bloomsbury, home of Tokyo University, the Tokyo Dome and the Mitsubishi family.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Bunkyo-ku, one of my favourite wards in Tokyo.



A street in Hongo in Bunkyo-Ku. Hongo is the equivalent of Bloomsbury in London. Few squares but lots of trees, cherry blossom and the home of Tokyo University, Japan's foremost seat of learning. Hongo was a lovely place, one of the most liveable areas in central Tokyo. At the back of the photo is the Sunshine 60 tower in Ikebukuro, once the tallest in Asia.



A typical back street in Hongo. Really chilled out compared to the rest of Tokyo. If i lived in Tokyo i'd live here. Sunshine 60 in the background.

The main high street in Hongo. Tokyo University is on the right.



The Bunkyo Civic Center. This is the best place to get sunset photos of Shinjuku and Mount Fuji in the background at Sunset. I haven't been that lucky with the weather yet unfortunately.



Work in the foreground, play in the background. Bet those bureuacrat pen-pushers at Bunkyo Ward would love to go on one of those rollercoasters! Sod planning those public toilets, lets go do a few loop-the-loops!

Looking down on Century Tower, one of Norman Foster's best creations. Back in the day where everything he did was good.


Sunshine 60 tower from the Bunkyo Civic Centre.


Playing on the Maranouichi Line.



-----------------------------------------------------------------------
NIHOMBASHI, OTEMACHI and THE GINZA - The establishment resides here. Kind of a mix of the City (finance), Kensington/Knightsbridge (classy shopping) and Buckingham Palace (the Japanese Imperial Family)
------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Ginza, the snobbiest area in Japan and THE place to be seen emptying your wallet.

'How do we get to Ginza?' Just read the advert!


NOT my photo, taken off the net from somewhere. Taken at dusk I guess. This guy has got the photo that i've tried to! You have to run out into the middle of the road to get this shot...pretty scary.


I like this photo. It shows a shinkansen whizzing past the Harumi Dori, Ginza's 2nd most important street. You really get the lego land, built up haphazard feel/nature of Tokyo in this photo. It typifies the city.


The Sony world hq, in the Ginza, glinting and glistening in the sunshine. Right slap bang on the Sukiyabashi crossing. The first few floors are open to the public and its got a wonderful bit of pop art which looks as though its splattered on by Warhol on the side of it.


Near Shiodome, Tokyo's brand new business district. This neon looks as though it was sweating. So i took a photo of it.


Here's one of Shiodome. The building in the picture houses ANA's hq and has a great steak restaurant at the top with great views of Ginza. I recommend it. mmmm...


Here's 2 models doing the catwalk in Mitsukoshi, Japan's classiest department store on the Chuo-Dori.


Otemachi, the City/Wall Street of Japan. Home of all the major trading houses (Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Marubeni, Sumitomo, UFJ and Mizuho). I shudder to think how much money is won and lost here every day...

The new Merrill Lynch building in Otemachi, nice tower. Its at the rear of the photo with the convex front.


Here's a cyclist snooping around procrastinating on where to go....



The Imperial Palace. Probably the most secretive royal family on the planet. The Chrysanthenum throne is the longest royal dynasty, they've been kicking around in and out of absolute power for around 2000 years now. No wonder the average suzuki in the street though they were gods until after the WW2 resignations. You can see them twice a year, on the 23rd of december (the Emporors birthday) and the 1st of January. Here is the Nijubashi 'New Bridge.'


Here's Tokyo Tower from the Imperial Palace Plaza. The building with the curved tapered sides to the left of it is the Atago Green Hills Mori building. Just over 600 feet tall, finished 2001 and one of my favourite modern buildings in Tokyo.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------
UENO - Tokyo's museum quarter. Home of the Tokyo Zoo and its most famous park
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ueno Park, in hanami. Hanami is the yearly tradition of looking at the cherry blossoms in parks around Japan and getting absolutely plastered. Its great fun, definitely a must if you visit Japan in spring time. Japanese people are even more approachable after they've imbibed a few drinks of sake!



Japan has so many homeless people its just not true. Here's one of many in Ueno park during Hanami.


Japan's youth...the future of Japan pissing themselves away in a park on a hot springs day We're the same everywhere guys! Couldn't think of anything better to do myself. What the hell, its hanami (lit. translated as 'sitting under the cherry trees getting drunk').




Sod it, i'll include Yokohama. Its only 40 minutes from the centre of Tokyo and there is no green space between Shibuya through Kawasaki to Japan's 3rd largest city. Its still in Tokyo. Population is over 5 million. The Landmark Tower is the tallest in Japan at around 1000 feet and a total monster. There are very good views of Fuji and Shinjuku from the top.



Here's the view from the top of the Landmark Tower, looking down on Queen's square. The curved building at the end of the pier is the Pan Pacific Hotel, great piece of architecture.


Minato-Mirai, a great example of post-modern city planning in Yokohama. At night.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SHINKANSENS - aka Bullet trains. The fastest, safest and most reliable trains in the world.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Electronic boards at Tokyo station...my trip back to Osaka. Sob.



To Shin-Osaka and work in the afternoon.



My train...The Nozomi 700 series. Not quite as fast as the Nozomi 500 series (the world's fastest scheduled timetabled train) but at 173 mph not exactly slow.



Bullet train advert - 'Ambitious Japan/.' I love this advert, especially the one on TV! Lots of salary man running and shinkansens whizzing passed with lots of freeze frames and picture acceleration coupled with whizzing sounds!



Bullet train, the fastest and safest way to travel in Japan. Nice view.

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Old August 12th, 2004, 06:09 AM   #2
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wahh!! i love those pics!! ku-ru na shashin da yo! jyouzu da na! those pics make me wanna catcha plane to Narita int rite now and just go snappin away wid my digicam. LOL but i aint got a digicam and i have NO okane WATsoever LOL most i can do is capture a few images off sum online webcam LOL oh well

LOL btw: are these models human? I was thinking they were from the loony bin if not totally unearthy beings LOL

i used to go down Mitsukoshi down here in London a few times b4 sum yrs bac, but i completely forgot wer it is now

GREAT pics again!
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Old August 16th, 2004, 03:32 AM   #3
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Hey mate.

We seem to be living the same life.

Those photos are great.Some of your people shots are just fantastic.
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Old August 17th, 2004, 11:09 AM   #4
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Dom: thanx for posting those, amazing thread + pics
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Old August 18th, 2004, 05:51 AM   #5
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i Love Tokyo!i Love Japan!!!!
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Old August 18th, 2004, 07:11 AM   #6
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yeah, i totally love this country to bits.
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Old August 18th, 2004, 09:05 AM   #7
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Hi Dom.. nice pics and very interesting insights of Tokyo.
How much does it cost to dine at the New York Grill @ Park Hyatt Shinjuku Hotel? Is it very dear? Is there an observation deck on top of the Tokyo Metropolitan Gov Building or any other skycrapers in the Shinjuku area?
cheers/ Pas
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Old August 18th, 2004, 09:31 PM   #8
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Awesome!
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Old August 19th, 2004, 12:29 AM   #9
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Amasing pics!!
Really wonderful!!
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Old August 21st, 2004, 02:53 AM   #10
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Amazing, I really can't wait till I go to Japan at the end of the year .
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Old August 22nd, 2004, 02:18 AM   #11
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Really like your photos. I like Japan and its History!!!
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Old August 23rd, 2004, 03:55 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pas
Hi Dom.. nice pics and very interesting insights of Tokyo.
How much does it cost to dine at the New York Grill @ Park Hyatt Shinjuku Hotel? Is it very dear? Is there an observation deck on top of the Tokyo Metropolitan Gov Building or any other skycrapers in the Shinjuku area?
cheers/ Pas
I dunno about dining, but my brother and I popped into the NYG back in March... cover charge was JPY2000 per person which didn't even include any drinks! One of the feature cocktails was the L.I.T

There are observation decks about 80% of the way up each of the towers at the Tokyo Metropolitan Goverment building(s) - I think it's the 45th floors? Anyway, it's free to go up and on a clear day (think New Year) you can see Fuji-san. Way cool.
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Old August 27th, 2004, 05:57 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrgazpacho
I dunno about dining, but my brother and I popped into the NYG back in March... cover charge was JPY2000 per person which didn't even include any drinks! One of the feature cocktails was the L.I.T

There are observation decks about 80% of the way up each of the towers at the Tokyo Metropolitan Goverment building(s) - I think it's the 45th floors? Anyway, it's free to go up and on a clear day (think New Year) you can see Fuji-san. Way cool.
thanks for the info
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Old August 28th, 2004, 07:01 AM   #14
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yeah, if there's music at the park hyatt, the cover is 2000 yen per head. dress up.

the drinks/cocktails are 2000 yen and up. they do taste lovely though.

dining? if you are asking you probably dont have enough money!

i think for an evening meal you are probably looking at 10,000 yen each minimum. that would probably exclude drinks.

the view is fantastic though. i'd just go for a couple of drinks myself, hang around for an hour and enjoy the panorama.
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Old August 29th, 2004, 01:21 AM   #15
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Amazing )):
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Old September 12th, 2004, 04:53 AM   #16
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Amasing pics!!
Really wonderful!!
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Old September 12th, 2004, 12:31 PM   #17
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Awsome thread, with lots of great pics!

I have a question about the royal family. Do they NEVER show? I mean, the danish royal family does all kind of public apperences, does the japanese do the same? Or are they just looked up in their palace?
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Old September 12th, 2004, 04:13 PM   #18
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Great photos! I wish I had more time to spend in Tokyo (I'm usually in Osaka most of the time).
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Old September 12th, 2004, 08:44 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaneda
Awsome thread, with lots of great pics!

I have a question about the royal family. Do they NEVER show? I mean, the danish royal family does all kind of public apperences, does the japanese do the same? Or are they just looked up in their palace?
Every 23 December (Emperor's birthday) and 2 January they wave to the crowds from the Imperial Palace.
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Old September 17th, 2004, 04:05 PM   #20
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draff what do you do in osaka? i live in namba btw and am an english teacher.
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