Travel | HOTELS & RESTAURANTS

Original whisky blend honors jazz lounge

It’s not every day that a hotel gets a world-famous whisky to call its very own. Available until the 300-bottle supply runs dry, the Grand Hyatt Tokyo is serving up an original Ichiro’s Malt blended whisky, christened Maduro, in tribute to the hotel’s 4th-floor jazz lounge of the same name.

Ichiro’s Malt Maduro goes for ¥4,200 a glass and ¥63,000 a bottle. Crafted to reflect the cosmopolitan ambiance of its namesake, Maduro blends distillations from the world’s five largest whisky producers — Scotland, Ireland, America, Canada and Japan — each aged 10 years or older.

A further three years of maturing in French oak casks has blessed Maduro with a plum-like sweetness, rich woody aroma and a cinnamon spice that envelops the palate before giving way to a mellow vanilla finish.

A simultaneous celebration at The Oak Door Bar two floors up features a variety of tea-inspired cocktails until June 30. Priced at ¥1,800, guests can choose between ryokucha (green tea) with apricot and hazelnut liqueurs, hōjicha (roasted green tea) mixed with whisky and lemon juice or genmaicha (green tea mixed with popped brown rice) with peach, elderflower and muscat liqueurs.

The Grand Hyatt Tokyo is three minutes from Roppongi Station. For more information, visit tokyo.grand.hyatt.jp or call 03-4333-1234.

American dining crossed with rock ‘n’ roll fun

A haven for those who love American dining and rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia, the Hard Rock Cafe is an iconic, instantly recognizable establishment.

Located in Ueno Station and open every day from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., the Hard Rock Cafe Ueno branch offers dining options for everyone and attracts music fans from around the world with its classic yet modern design.

The menu features a wide array of hearty entrees, including rich macaroni and cheese topped with Parmesan parsley bread crumbs and grilled chicken breast, barbecue chicken, rib-eye steak, grilled salmon, tender baby back ribs, smoked sandwiches and burgers.

Among the lighter dining options are scrumptious appetizers, ranging from chicken wings to nachos and quesadillas, as well as tempting and delicious salads. Diners can also top off their meals with a selection of margaritas, cocktails and other alcoholic beverages.

Enthusiasts will also be happy to know that an assortment of cafe merchandise is available at the Rock Shop; the recently opened Asakusa Rock Shop has two floors’ worth of memorabilia such as T-shirts, pins and other exclusive goods.

For more information, access https://www.hardrockcafe.com/location/tokyo-uyeno-eki/ (Ueno branch) or http://hardrockjapan.com/location/asakusa-shop/ (Asakusa Rock Shop).

Maximum comfort awaits at new Kyoto hotel

Japan’s ancient capital-turned urban sprawl is gaining a new hotel to welcome guests to Kyoto in style. West Japan Railway Hotel Development Ltd. has announced that Hotel Vischio Kyoto by Granvia will celebrate its grand opening on May 30.

The news follows Hotel Vischio Osaka opening its doors and the rebranding of Hotel Vischio Amagasaki last June. Hotel Vischio Kyoto will be located next to Kyoto Station, making it easily accessible via shinkansen and subway lines. The hotel is part of a new brand that retains the quality of Hotel Granvia while placing emphasis on accommodations with a sophisticated and modern flair.

The word “vischio” is Italian for mistletoe, a holy tree said to bring luck, peace and happiness, according to Norse mythology. The name reflects the hotel’s dedication to offering an urban, yet relaxing setting for guests.

With this in mind, all beds feature Simmons mattresses adorned with original bedding to ensure a comfortable night in dreamland. In addition to private baths in each room, there are also spacious communal baths with revitalizing saunas. Best of all, the hotel chef has assembled dazzling breakfast menus incorporating local ingredients to give guests a fresh start to their day.

Hotel Vischio Kyoto by Granvia is two minutes from Kyoto Station’s Hachijo Exit. For more information, access https://www.hotelvischio-kyoto.com/en/ or call 075-280-0055.