No sooner had I cycled round what I thought was just about every Godzilla-related location back in 2014 and it was announced that a Godzilla hotel would be built in the Kabukicho district of Shinjuku. At the start of March last year, a Godzilla head could be seen poking out of the top of Hotel Gracery (below) and by the of the next month the hotel, incorporating Toho Cinema, was finished.
Reception to the hotel is on the 8th floor and a cafe can be found there with means of entry to the Godzilla head. It is also accessible for hotel guests and says as much but I’m sure that if you stride along to the exit sliding doors with confidence then it can all be done for free. Anyway, I decided to play safe and go to Café Terrace Bonjour for a drink and to take some pictures.
The plan was to just get a tea or juice but then I saw something called the New Godzilla Cake Set on a special menu. After a bit of indecisiveness and thought, I finally decided to bite the bullet and purchase it for the monster-ous price of 1800 yen (plus tax!). Well it’s not like I’ll be going back too often so it really was a now-or-never moment.
The drink is supposed to resemble a gas tank and the cake part is designed to look like a building but maybe you need a better imagination than me to see all that! The chocolate kaiju was more solid than I imagined but once you get to the lower half of the body it is finally hollow.
Before and after tucking in to that set I went on to the balcony to see the monster’s head up close which I didn’t realise was even possible until earlier this year. Before that I was only aware of being able to stay in a room with a view of Godzilla or even going the full hog and spending a night or two in a special Godzilla room on the 30th floor. Click here for more details of that courtesy of RocketNews24!
There are three sculptural reliefs on show with the first one depicting the giant radioactive lizard about to topple the National Diet Building in the original ‘Godzilla‘ (1954) film. The next one comes from the 16th film, also entitled ‘Godzilla‘ (1984), and shows the monster in Yurakucho.
The final relief (below) is an image from ‘Godzilla Vs Mothra‘ (1992).
The views over Shinjuku are pretty impressive and seeing it all from the perspective of such a cinematic icon is interesting as is the roar that comes from within it on the hour mark between 12:00 noon and 8pm. Steam is also lightly breathed out which took me a little by surprise!
Behind the bar on some of the shelves are a set of plastic Gojira figures and there is a much larger one on the perimeter fence of the cafe (below) looking towards the reception desk.
On the way from the elevator to the reception there are a load of pictures of all the Toho-produced Godzilla films and back towards the lift is a Godzilla video game machine.
This is Japan so of course there are some Godzilla-related souvenirs available at the reception. These include badges, key-rings, figures, lantern magnets, plastic wallets and so on.
Don’t worry if you forget then as the convenience store (below) on the ground floor also has them in stock.
Ahead of the July release of ‘Shin Gojira‘ (2016) there were the usual various promotional tie-ins with snack food producers like the ones above.
Japan is always good at coming up with unique ways of marking, and indeed marketing, film releases and one such example was the Godzilla foot (below) on display in Sunshine City in Ikebukuro.
The Godzilla trail didn’t end there for me though as after “lunch” at the hotel (above) I ventured on to the very southern depths of Tokyo to experience the Godzilla bathhouse.