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Priceline Hotel: 5* Tokyo (Minato-Shinagawa) InterContinental Bay


baldtomato
By baldtomato,
in

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We are landing in Tokyo layover for one night on Feb 4th and then going to Sapporo before coming back for 3 more nights. I started tonight's bidding sequence with the other (longer) segment of my trip Feb 10-13 as that's a weekend and i'm more anxious to secure that first - see separate post - that one i got for $139 and I wanted the same hotel for the one-night stay prior to Sapporo (so perhaps i can ask them to keep some luggage for me so i won't have to drag them to Sapporo).

Started this bid at $130 just for fun. Got counterbid $22 thru my $133 to $137 bids ($1 to $2 increments each). Finally got it at $138. I am quite surprised at the steep taxes and service charges... wow. haven't done priceline for a while, did they jack up their service charges? or is it just heavy japanese tourist tax?

I know Tokyo fairly well (5th trip for me) so despite this hotel being slightly "off the beaten track", i'm sure we'll do just fine with transportation. The main advantage that drew me to want to stay in Shinbashi is that it's a cheap cab ride after late-night hot spring in Odaiba ... won't have to be curfewed by last-train schedules! and it's close to the Tsukiji fish market... easy access to Asakusa and Ueno tourist spots, fairly close (cab's ride) back from night clubs in Roppongi etc... which are the focus of this trip for us.

Anyway, here's my winning bid:

Intercontinental Tokyo Bay

Check-In Date: Sunday, February 4, 2007

Check-Out Date: Monday, February 5, 2007

Minato-Ku - Shinagawa-Ku

1 16 2 Kaigan, Minato Ku

Tokyo, Japan

81 3 5404 2222

Your Offer Price: US$138.00

Number of Rooms: 1

Number of Nights: 1

Subtotal: US$138.00

Taxes & Service Fees:

US$29.86

Total Charges: US$167.86

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  • 4 months later...

yes the closest JR station is the Hama-matsu-cho station of the Yamanote line. It's about 4 blocks away and at first it felt far, but on our 2nd and 3rd time it became just a nice 10 minute walk. The station itself is one of the smaller stations of the Yamanote, so even though you're walking a bit further above ground, once you get to the station, the platforms are literally just around the corner of the ticket turnstiles (as opposed to the other HUGE yamanote stations like Shinjuku or Ikebukuro where you're walking another 10 minutes INSIDE the station!). I remember you can exit the Hamamatsucho station at either the North or South exit - essentially both will get you to the hotel in equal distance (just two parallel paths on either side of a park) but the North exit route is a bit darker at night. You will pass by the convenience store i mentioned in my Hotel Review if you keep walking after going out the South exit.

If you happen to be arriving in Tokyo via the domestic Haneda airport, then you can take the Monorail directly into Hamamatsucho station for less than 500yen. VERY good value considering it's a directly airport express! Don't even need to transfer lines.

At first we didn't know which station (of the Yamanote) would be closest to the hotel and tried exiting at the major station of Shimbashi and tried to WALK to the hotel... BIG mistake. It looked really close on our simplified map from Shimbashi to the hotel (as the Shimbashi and Shiodome stations are soooo close in reality) but Shiodome and Hamamatsucho are (as we painfully found out) far apart, ... the problem is not so much the absolute distance but it's difficult to walk in between those two stations because the parts of the route on ground from Shiodome to Hamamatsucho was actually motor expressway had no pedestrian sidewalks, and you have to get in between all the skyscrapers up and down a few ped-bridges and in and out of the terrace level of some of these buildings... BAD mistake (but turned out to be an OK walk for us b/c of the good weather).

The Daimon station (of the Metro Oedo line) was also not far from that station, and that takes you to and from places that the Yamanote doesn't directly reach. Lots of good options once we figured out the metro map.

best of luck and have fun!

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Thanx for the information! I might have a JR map somewere. I have allways stayed in Ikebukuro but this sounds like a nice hotel. And close to Roppongi, I like ..

Do you remember the rack rate at the time of your win? Best rack rate for my dates is $240/night at hotels site.

I guess I'm going to start try at $95 and work my way up. I have never bid for a 5* in Japan before. Any suggestion?

Thanx again.

Henrik.

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The hotel front desk has a small map with all the nearby transport stations all plotted. It would probably be hard to figure out where the hotel stands if you're just looking at a generic JR map, IMHO.

We went in Feb and i think that's "lower" season than now. I think you probably would need to start your bid at at least 115 or 120 and go from there. I think the rack rate was about 240 to 280 when we went, but then our 2nd stretch of days included a local long weekend (nonetheless, our pre-Hokkaido single night stay in the middle of the week was similar in winning bid price to the one that covered the long weekend)

If your main interest for this trip is Roppongi, i would also suggest you try a Shibuya hotel, as there are direct shuttles to and from Roppongi Hills and Shibuya train station. Not sure about the PL options there though. But this hotel is close to Yurakucho (and Ginza), and the multi-transfer hub Shimbashi station (one JR away). Lots and lots of cool authentic eats (and a Bic Camera that opens late) around Yurakucho station. You can also take the very-scenic ferries near this hotel to and from the older areas of Asakusa (where the famous temple is, and then Ueno area for traditional products). Definitely different from Ikebukuro. (I too had stayed at Ikebukuro no fewer than 4 times before, and found this a very nice change).

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I really recommend checking the hotel website before making a bid. The prices can vary drastically by changing dates. I was able to get two nights for just over 33,000yen including all the taxes and fees for 4/30-5/2.

As for ways to get to the hotel, I believe the yurikamome (the little automated train/truck thing that runs between odaiba and shinagawa) has a station that is connected to the hotel. At least I remember it being very close.

By the way, you can get a lot of "extra bids" for tokyo 5 stars by adding other areas nearby that have no 5star hotels. Chiyoda only has a 1star, Narita only goes up to 3 and Shinjuku only goes up to 4.

Be careful with your pricing though because you may end up at a different hotel in Shinagawa I think it was.

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very true re the bidding strategies - i think i used all those "rebid" zones myself

if you do end up getting a different 5* hotel in Shinagawa, i don't think that could be a bad thing at all. As far as I'm aware, all the 5* in that zone could only be better than the Intercontinental! (would the hotel on Roppongi Hills be in this zone? i think they call that one a 6*, i think that is a Hyatt? - otherwise, i think the Conrad and the Meridien are also other 5* hotels nearby! although i have absolutely no idea whether these three have ever come up in PL for Tokyo at all)

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  • 2 weeks later...

um when i was researching for my bid (half a year ago now) i think i'd only seen the Intercontinental as the 5* in this zone, that's why i took the risk to place my two bids to try to hit the same hotel (so that i could ask them to stow my luggage for me while i took a side trip!)

i remember reading from this board when i first learned about PL that there are tricks you can try to gauge your "chances" of getting a certain hotel (of course all those reported strategies come with disclaimers that they don't personally guarantee for it to work all the time). I think they are in the General Suggestions forum, you should check it out. Roughly, they talk about how you can check with the hotel checker site or even directly check the official site for the hotel you're eyeing for, to make sure that particular hotel has available rooms (that are still in the lowest rack rate range) for the dates you will be bidding. They won't be available to PL (or at least, less likely to be the top PL choice) if they've only got the 2nd or 3rd step up rooms left, etc etc.

so you still haven't got any luck with your bid yet?

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