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Tokyo lifestyle: Canal Café in Iidabashi, Chinzan-so garden and fashion in Ikebukuro

Tokyo lifestyle: Canal Café in Iidabashi, Chinzan-so garden and fashion in Ikebukuro

Sarah Deschamps and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Tokyo is a very intriguing city which caters for so many different lifestyles. Also, within such a short space of time you can visit a wealth of diversity. This article provides a glimpse into the richness of Tokyo life by focusing on areas which appeal to people of all ages.

Within 9 minutes on the Yurakucho subway line you can visit the mega fashion district of Ikebukuro, the adorable Chinzan-so garden and relax at the Canal Café in Iidabashi. All three places can be visited by the Yurakucho train line and in total it only takes between 9 to 10 minutes in travel time. This amazing area provides amazing relaxation, the crème de la crème of fashion boutiques, the stunning garden of Chinzan-so, delightful Canal Café whereby individuals can enjoy gentle rowing, and so much more.

The Canal Café in Iidabashi is a great place to relax and enjoy the view provided by this elegant café. When the weather permits you will see people enjoying rowing, sitting outside, enjoying the lovely environment, watching the distant trains go by, and soaking up the delightful atmosphere

Also, individuals can enjoy Italian cuisine, Thai curry, and a host of other dishes. The Canal Café provides ample choice and this applies to dining inside, eating certain dishes outside via the spacious seating which is available, relaxing with a quiet drink, and for more daring individuals, then relaxing by rowing. Indeed, the choice angle and spacious sitting areas within the Canal Café, is most appealing and for this reason many Tokyoites enjoy the ambient atmosphere time after time.

The La Cucina restaurant provides delicious Italian food. Therefore, people can decide on a scrumptious meal or a more casual time. Either way, the relaxing nature of the Canal Café, the rowing angle, scenic background, and the spacious layout; means that it is a place which is well worth visiting.

For lovers of fashion then Ikebukuro is an amazing place to visit because this trendy district is going from strength to strength.  The east-side is extremely busy but the fashion angle on the west-side is developing nicely and you have a different feel to both sides of Ikebukuro. Also, the huge train complex is an enormous hub for fashion. Therefore, you will find amazing department stores which include Lumine, Tobu Department Store, Seibu Department Store, Esola, Marui, Parco, and so many other fantastic places to visit, either within the train complex, connected by underground passages (Marui) or within a one minute walk (Parco on the east side).

Of course, Tobu Department Store and Seibu Department Store cater for a wide variety of shopping and both stores focus heavily on their respective Ikebukuro base. The age range may vary at each department store but collectively individuals of all ages are served in Ikebukuro and this applies to stylish companies which provide real quality. This fact means that the fashion scene in this thriving district is blessed with top notch Japanese and international fashion companies, which caters for a vast spectrum of styles.

In Esola you have lovely boutiques which include Actuel, Amphi, Barbie Store, Beardsley Gallardagalante, Blue Bell Market, DouDou, Elleva, FRAMeWORK, Free’s Mart, Jolly Boutique, Muriel & Mercuria, Nuit et Jour Spick and Span, Opaque Clip, Royal Flash, and Turno Jeana. Esola is on the west side and is near to Lumine, Tobu Department Store, within easy reach to the trendy Ikebukuro Fukutoshin area, and within minutes from Marui. Also, you have a delightful art and crafts center in the same vicinity which is a must place to visit for Tokyoites and tourists alike.

Within the same Yurakucho subway line catchment area you have Edogawabashi where Chinzan-so is located. Of course, Ikebukuro is served by many train lines and is the second busiest train station in Tokyo. However, the Yurakucho subway line hub which applies to this article opens up all three areas which are connected by this underground train line.

Chinzan-so is one of the most adorable places to visit in the whole of Tokyo because the garden is extremely rich in history. The landscape and architecture highlights the refinement of Japan within such a compact area. Also, you have many restaurants within Chinzan-so in order to eat scrumptious food and the Japanese angle means that each place matches the scenic surrounding.

On top of this, you have an amazing hotel called the Four Seasons Hotel which is internationally famous(http://www.fourseasons.com/tokyo/) because of the sublime luxury that this company provides. The Chinzan-so based Four Seasons Hotel is located in such an amazing part of Tokyo, that a stay at this luxury hotel must rank high on the list of all individuals who adore quality in all directions. This applies to the stunning garden of Chinzan-so, the exquisite architecture, scrumptious food, richness of culture, and the majestic luxury of Four Seasons Hotel.

Turning back to the stunning beauty of Chinzan-so then in a previous article by Modern Tokyo Times it was stated that “Chinzan-so is a stunning garden in Tokyo whereby you can view the natural beauty of an amazing Japanese garden, beautiful architecture, elements of Buddhism, the magical world of Shintoism, and so much more. Also, unlike the vast majority of stunning gardens in Tokyo which close early this doesn’t apply to Chinzan-so therefore at night the garden is also extremely beautiful and you have many restaurants to eat scrumptious Japanese food. However, being Chinzan-so, then even the restaurants blend in with the natural environment and clearly this beautiful place would bless any major city in the world.”

Indeed, in Chinzan-so you also have a rich Taoist element. Therefore, the fusion of this philosophy, along with Buddhism and Shintoism, highlights the richness of this amazing garden. You also have a sacred 500 year old tree, a delightful waterfall, small Shinto shrine, Taoist images, lovely Pagoda, and so much more. This means that you can’t help but fall in love with Chinzan-so and the views at night are also extremely romantic because the garden is elegantly lit up.

Overall, the three places highlighted in this article show the richness of the lifestyle of Tokyo. After all, throughout this amazing city you will have countless catchment areas which are in easy distance because of the fantastic infrastructure of this high tech mega-city.

 

Chinzan-so and Four Seasons Hotel

http://www.chinzanso.com/english/

http://www.fourseasons.com/tokyo/   Four Seasons Hotel

http://www.chinzanso.com/english/restaurant.html

Canal Café

www.canalcafe.jp 

Fashion

http://www.esola-ikebukuro.com/

http://orizzonti.co.jp/category/actuel/

http://www.barbie-stores.com/

http://www.bluebellmarket.net/index.html

http://www.palgroup.co.jp/brands/doudou/

http://www.turnojeana.jp/

http://www.frees-mart.com/index.html

http://m-muriel.jp/index.html

http://www.elleva.jp/

http://www.frame-works.co.jp/index_n.html

http://blog-s.frame-works.co.jp/  Spick and Span official blog  

http://www.jolly-boutique.com/

http://www.world.co.jp/opaqueclip/

http://royalflash-jp.com/pc/home.html

Other Shops

http://www.loccitane.co.jp/shop/

http://www.unico-fan.co.jp/

http://www.aveda.co.jp/default.asp

http://www.laureloil.jp/

http://www.nonbrush.com/

http://gloccy.jp/

http://www.lunch8.com/

http://www.toffy.jp/

http://ameblo.jp/4ft-ikebukuro/

 

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

http://moderntokyotimes.com

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Posted by on June 2, 2012 in Japan

 

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Tokyo tourism: Chinzan-so garden, delicious food and rich in culture

Tokyo tourism: Chinzan-so garden, delicious food and rich in culture

Olivier LeCourt and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Chinzan-so is a stunning garden in Tokyo whereby you can view the natural beauty of an amazing Japanese garden, beautiful architecture, elements of Buddhism, the magical world of Shintoism, and so much more. Also, unlike the vast majority of stunning gardens in Tokyo which close early this doesn’t apply to Chinzan-so therefore at night the garden is also extremely beautiful and you have many restaurants to eat scrumptious Japanese food. However, being Chinzan-so, then even the restaurants blend in with the natural environment and clearly this beautiful place would bless any major city in the world.

The natural beauty of Chinzan-so is so refreshing because not only can you connect with stunning nature but also this garden is rich in culture and history. The stunning pagoda and aspects of Buddhism, Shintoism, Taoism, and the sacred 500 year old tree, also highlights the exquisite nature of Chinzan-so.

Luxury can also be found at (http://www.fourseasons.com/tokyo/the Four Seasons Hotel which can be found throughout the amazing city of Tokyo and internationally. The Four Seasons Hotel highlighted in this article applies to the hotel which is located in the same Chinzan-so area. Therefore, if you adore luxury, architecture, the backdrop of an amazing garden and so much more; then the sublime Four Seasons Hotelfused with your stay in Tokyo and the richness of Chinzan-so garden is an amazing break which will stay long in the memory.

Chinzan-so is like walking into the past and into a magical world where you can imagine the amazing animation film called “Spirited Away” by Hayao Miyazaki. This applies to the stone deities, aspects of Buddhism, small Shinto shrine, and famous religious tree. Therefore, the spiritual nature of Chinzan-so is a welcome dimension and at night if you have an “over imagination,” then you can feel the mystery of the old world which is also highlighted in the animation film called “Spirited Away.”

This stunning garden enables people to feel the hidden magic of the Edo period and the changing times of Japan in the Meiji period. Also, it is clear that the opulent wealth of the elites in the past developed this splendid garden and they did so with an eye on culture and aesthetics.

Prince Aritomo Yamagata built his magnificent mansion where modern Chinzan-so stands but of course modifications have been made. The name Chinzan-so means “House of Camellia” therefore you will find many types of camellia throughout this exquisite and stunning garden.

In a past article about Chinzan-so by Modern Tokyo Times it was stated that “The prestige of Prince Aritomo Yamagata and his importance and how Chinzan-so is viewed can be judged by the fact that the Emperor Meiji held many important meetings in this place, in order to plan the future with dignitaries who held important seats of power.  Therefore, it is abundantly clear that the stunning environment, remote settings where seclusion could be found from prying eyes and the cultural aspect of Chinzan-so meant that it was an ideal setting.”

 

“Much of the historical legacy today which can be viewed must be credited to Baron Heitaro Fujita because he utilized the stunning grounds and topography.  This applies to adding important historical monuments and many of these came from Kyoto and Toba. However, the stunning pagoda which is very beautiful was relocated from Hiroshima.”

Therefore, the historical legacy and richness of culture is abundantly obvious because Baron Heitaro Fujita utilized every positive aspect of Chinzan-so and today Tokyoites and tourists can witness many intriguing aspects of Japanese culture. Also, from a religious and philosophical point of view the Taoist images from ancient China fuses naturally with aspects of Buddhism and Shintoism. These images and the numerous stone lanterns are a wonder to behold and the delightful pond, exquisite pagoda, images of Taoism and Buddhism, small Shinto shrine, a sacred 500 year old tree, waterfall, and the stunning layout of the garden means that Chinzan-so is very special.

Throughout the grounds you also have many restaurants to visit and for tourists and Tokyoites you can enjoy not only the natural beauty of Chinzan-so, but you can also eat scrumptious food. This applies to “Kinsui”which is a traditional restaurant which is famous for the kaiseki cuisine; “Mokushundo” where they provide delicious Japanese box lunches, fondue, and barbecue; “Chuu-an” restaurant serves up Edomae sushi and other delicious food; and “Mucha-an” restaurant provides delicious food and is known for their delicious Japanese soba.

The beauty of all these restaurants is that they blend in naturally within the stunning grounds of Chinzan-so. Therefore, the dining experience is a real treasure because not only can you eat extremely delicious food, but the backdrop of the stunning scenery is really special. Not surprisingly, all these restaurants are of the highest quality and cater for different styles of Japanese food.

Also, you have a firmly established restaurant called “Camellia” in this stunning environment and this dining place is famous for its French cuisine. This restaurant is rich in history because for more than 50 years it remains highly acclaimed based on the mouth-watering food which is provided.  The view is also extremely majestic and the setting is spacious. Therefore, if you are a connoisseur of scrumptious French cuisine then restaurant “Camellia” will certainly please you.

Within the main hotel complex overlooking Chinzan-so you have “Café Foresta” which is very spacious and a great place to relax and drink tea, coffee, and other choices, and to eat a delicious cake and so forth “Café Foresta” also provides amazing views of Chinzan-so if you are lucky enough to find a place by the enormous windows. At night, the view is fantastic because of the lights which highlight the beautiful pagoda and other special areas.

Chinzan-so is a must place to visit in Tokyo because of everything highlighted in this article and so much more.

http://www.chinzanso.com/english/restaurant.html

http://www.fourseasons.com/tokyo/ Four Seasons Hotel

http://www.chinzanso.com/english/

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

 
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Posted by on February 11, 2012 in Japan

 

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