Trunk Hotel is a small, perfectly formed Tokyo temple to chic, sustainable modernism. Its tiered, black-steel balconies overflow with greenery while its peaceful garden courtyard surrounds a glorious zelkova tree, jade green in summer and flame red in autumn. Read on for the full review.

The hotel has 15 immaculately designed rooms and suites, an east-meets-west restaurant and a café serving street-style Shibuya soul food. The bar team creates delicious cocktails by infusing tequila with avocado seeds, and matcha with mescal. There’s a shop too, selling local, sustainable gifts including drinking glasses made from discarded fluorescent light bulbs and honey from nectar collected in nearby Yoyogi Park. Topping off this creative feast is a glass-and-wood rooftop wedding chapel.

Where is Trunk Hotel? 

Trunk Hotel

The hotel occupies a small plot in Jingumae, sandwiched between the super-hip ’hoods of Shibuya and Harajuku. It’s roughly an hour’s train ride from Haneda Airport, 400 metres from Shibuya station and a 15-minute walk from Harajuku station.

What’s near Trunk Hotel?

The hotel’s neighbourhood of Shibuya is cooler than cool, peppered with traditional Izakaya gastropubs, karaoke venues, video-game arcades, restaurants, fashion outlets, manga cafés and art galleries. After fuelling up on a Trunk Vitality Vegan breakfast, guests can stroll to the famous five-way Shibuya Crossing (Tokyo’s busiest pedestrian crosswalk) in about 15 minutes and Yoyogi Park in about 20. Just north of the park, the elegant Meiji Jingu shrine nestles peacefully in its own forest.

Room types 

Trunk Hotel

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The rooms scream Japanese chic, each one individually designed by a local designer and decorated with exclusive artworks and items, all stylish and many made from recycled materials. Each room is non-smoking and has air-conditioning, free bottled water, blackout curtains, flat-screen TV and a white-tiled, ensuite bathroom with organic shampoo and toothpaste. Beds float on raised platforms above blond-wood floors and there are cute bunks reached by black ladders. Some Standard Rooms have balconies, others lofts. The Balcony Junior Suite is a family favourite, while the Living Suite boasts a bar, projector and record player (including vinyl). The Dining Suite and duplex Terrace Suite each have a full kitchen; the latter also has a 16-seat dining table, terrace, plunge pool and its own lift.

Restaurants and bars 

Trunk Kitchen offers Japanese-Western fusion dishes for breakfast (7–11am), lunch (11am–4pm) and dinner (M–F 5.30–11pm, Sat 5–11pm, Sun 5–10pm). Don’t miss the avocado and zucchini fritters and the vitamin and mineral drink pairings. Trunk Kushi is a smaller café echoing local food-stall culture by serving Shibuya soul food: skewers of meat and offal, with shitake mushrooms the lone veggie option. Hit Trunk Lounge in the evening for Stargazer cocktails (based on pineapple-infused rum) and a craft beer created for the hotel by Tokyo’s Ishikawa Brewery.   


Trunk Hotel

Trunk Hotel is a treasure trove of creative sustainability. Among numerous innovative products are pencils made from recycled lead, clothes hangers from recycled iron, mugs from regenerated crockery, tissue boxes from a local leather factory’s off-cuts, hairdryer bags from used clothes and drinking glasses from old fluorescent lightbulbs. Beds and interiors are constructed using waste material from demolished buildings and lounge stools from discarded wine corks. There are complimentary bicycles and a shop selling local, sustainable products including recycled cotton t-shirts. Even the wooden ballpoint pens are supercool: they’re made from rock bands’ broken drumsticks.

Travel for work

The hotel is the epitome of laptop-and-latte hot-desking. Grab a mocha, a lemongrass houiji tea or a sweet potato shochu and hunker down in the Lounge to get creative. Wi-fi is complimentary throughout the hotel and there are four event/meeting spaces. 

What you need to know

Trunk Hotel

Use the hotel’s concierge team to plan great day trips, including hanging out with sumo wrestlers. Don’t be spooked by the extra accommodation tax of ¥200/day… it’s only $2 (US$1.40). 

Best for: Design-savvy travellers
Design: Modern, sustainable chic 
Ambience: Cool and collected
Number of rooms: 15 rooms and suites 
Rates: From ¥44,352 (A$480) per night (Standard Room, two adults); ¥50,264 (A$544) (Standard Room, two adults + breakfast)
Wi-fi: Fast and free
Parking: No parking
Address: 5-31 Jingumae, Shibuya-Ku, Tokyo 150-0001, Japan
Telephone: +81 3 5766 3210

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