Travel | HOTELS & RESTAURANTS

Chocolate delights abound in afternoon teas

Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo is getting festive this winter with a cacao-themed afternoon tea series, set to start in December and run through Valentine’s Day. Hosted from the hotel’s lobby lounge Le Jardin overlooking the Japanese gardens, the event consists of two chapters that each boast their own unique and chocolatey theme.

Available Dec. 1 through Jan. 15, the Aromatic Cacao Afternoon Tea will be served from noon to 6 p.m. on weekdays for ¥3,800 and offers such fragrant delights as rich raspberry chocolate bonbons and rose-scented chocolate ganache.

The second part of the series is the Chocolat Rouge Afternoon Tea, which runs from Jan. 16 to Feb. 14. It is held in the same venue for the same price and is available on weekdays from 2:30 p.m. and from noon to 6 p.m. on weekends and holidays. The more fruit-filled of the two themes, this chapter features chocolate mousse drizzled with strawberry sauce and white chocolate-dipped strawberries coated in dried fruit, among other tart berry creations.

The hotel has also prepared an afternoon tea-inclusive overnight stay plan to be available on weeknights throughout the entire event period (excluding Christmas and New Year’s holidays). Priced at ¥24,600 and up, guests will be put up in the Prime Superior Suite after being treated to Afternoon Tea on the day of their check-in.

Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo is 10 minutes from Edogawabashi Station. For more information, visit hotel-chinzanso-tokyo.jp or call 03-3943-1111.

A night of refined Michelin-starred fare

Roll out the red carpet — Shinagawa Prince Hotel is proud to announce its first-ever guest chef appearance. From Nov. 15 to 17, New York Michelin-starred chef Gabriel Kreuther will give live tableside performances as he cooks up a decadent 11-part meal that is guaranteed to please.

The Gabriel Kreuther Special Dinner will be served from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Dining & Bar Table 9 Tokyo on the hotel’s highest floor. The meal is priced at ¥27,000 a person and is limited to 70 guests per night.

Though born in France, Kreuther has enjoyed monumental success at his eponymous restaurant and chocolate shop in New York. In 2009, he won the James Beard Award for Best Chef: New York City.

Kreuther’s meal starts with four of his appetizer creations. For the main course, guests can choose the beef tenderloin “mignonette” with butternut squash and juniper berry jus (sauce), or the roast squab and foie gras served with pureed green cabbage and glazed celeriac.

Dessert comes with a choice between chestnut petit beurre shortbread, vanilla and chestnut mousseline and cassis sherbet, or chocolate fudge balls with dark and milk chocolate mousse and caramel ice cream.

The Shinagawa Prince Hotel is two minutes from Shinagawa Station Takanawa Exit. For further information and reservations, visit http://www.princehotels.com/shinagawa/ or call 03-3440-1111.

Chauffeured car lets guests see Osaka in style

The InterContinental Osaka is rolling out an all-new set of wheels thanks to a dream team collaboration with British auto manufacturer Land Rover. Experience the height of extravagance with the hotel’s latest accommodation package, the Escape to Luxury: Range Rover Chauffeur Stay Plan.

The plan is available through Sept. 7 next year and includes a two-night stay for two in the Club Executive Suite, complete with breakfast service in the suite’s exclusive lounge. At a stately price of ¥750,000, the plan features every amenity one could ask for.

At both check-in and check-out, guests can be picked up and dropped off anywhere within a 40-kilometer radius of the hotel; and during their stay, they are welcome to make use of a chauffeured Range Rover — the new official vehicle of InterContinental Osaka — for three hours each day.

The plan also provides personal trip coordinating services, a course dinner with wine pairing at the hotel’s Michelin-starred French restaurant Pierre, signature spa treatment at Meguri Spa & Wellness and use of the fourth-floor fitness gym, pool, Japanese-style bath and sauna. Reservations are required and can be made as late as Aug. 31.

The InterContinental Osaka is directly connected to Umeda and Osaka stations. For more information or reservations, visit https://www.icosaka.com or call 06-6374-5700.