Awhile ago I saw a video about a hotel in Japan with not only a robot staff, but a dinosaur robot staff. It looked so cool that I wanted to stay at least one night while in Tokyo. It ended up working out perfectly because there’s a couple and one of the locations is near Disney on Maihama Tokyo Bay.
After finally leaving Kyoto by the Shinkansen (with dinner bento boxes) we finally arrived at Tokyo station, transferred and made our way to Maihama station. The only difficulty at that point was making our way to the hotel. The hotel was near enough that we could catch one of several buses near the Disney grounds to our hotel. However all of the bus information was in Japanese and we did have some difficulty figuring it out. But we got on the right bus which ended up being very crowded and made our way to the hotel. (buses number 6, 9, and 37 go towards the hotel)
Because the hotel is run by robots check in can be a bit difficult. There are touch screen machines that do most of the work. The person who booked the hotel needs to have their passport ready and they need to go first in order for the system to find the booking. There’s a machine that will scan the passport after you select your language. Then all other subsequent guests who may need keys will then have to scan their passports. However, we had some difficulty doing this so the robot clerk called for a human to assist who came out from the back and helped us figure everything out.
Toiletries are also available at the front desk. The lobby is also where two large robotic dinosaurs can be found as well as some robotic fish, which sadly were not out due to maintenance while we stayed there.
These robots were the only dinosaur robots at the hotel. They made noises and moved and it was really cool to see. We were very entranced. Once in our rooms though there was one more robot for us to play with. Tapia.
Tapia is like an AI that’s plugged into the room. Tapia can play games with guests (like rock paper scissors which uses its web cam to play), control the lights, the TV, tell you the weather and control the air conditioning. If you struggle for Tapia to understand you the whole ordeal can turn from cute to frustrating pretty quickly. I started with trying to get Tapia to set an alarm only to realize it wasn’t a voice function that worked.
Instead I had to do it via the touch screen. I spent a long time working on this. There is also at least one light that automatically turns on that can only be turned on or off via Tapia. I couldn’t get the room very cold either, which with the summer heat was additionally frustrating. You may also want to throw one of the long button up nightgowns they provide over Tapia for the night because the glow doesn’t go away even if you tell Tapia to go to sleep.
Our room also came with breakfast which was in the restaurant next door. (There was no complimentary water but there was a convenience store nearby and a vending machine near the elevators)
Breakfast included some interesting things like dinosaur chicken nuggets and matcha ice cream.
The aesthetic was fun but it definitely seemed like a place that was mostly full of families with small kids. Which kind of made sense. It was a short ways away from Disney but not as expensive as a Disney hotel and included a shuttle that went all the way there and back.
So if you want to save money on transportation you can catch the free shuttle to the hotel from Maihama station.
Pick up is near the clocktower monument outside the JR Maihama north exit. The quickest way is via stairs but if you have time and energy there are ramps and elevators if you look around. The shuttle buses are yellow and say Henn na Hotel.
It was really convenient to take to go to Disney since it was the same side we were picking our tickets up at. I also used it to get back to the station after checking out.
If you arrive too early and check in hasn’t started they do have lockers available to store your stuff outside, since there aren’t any people in the lobby to watch your things. They also have several notes about packing your stuff up if you’re leaving for the day because cleaning will happen and they don’t want you to possibly loose something. This made my friends nervous, but there’s also a safe you can use for anything that’s valuable.
It was a really fun hotel to stay at and I’m glad my friends agreed to go with me. It was in the perfect location for the Disney parks and far enough away that we didn’t have to worry about sound.