EIC EXPRESS Vol. 51 (Spring)

Online Benefits
If you do not need the print version of EIC Express, please visit http://www.keioplaza.com/eic/express.html for registration. Those who register will be notified of new issues via e-mail. This measure is part of the hotel's effort to decrease paper waste and stay as environmentally friendly as possible. The Keio Plaza will give a 500-point bonus to those who choose to register.
A First-ever Award for a One-of-a-kind Bartender
WatanabeKazuya Watanabe is the Vice Manager of Keio Plaza Hotel's Catering Division and also the chairperson of the Hotel Barmen's Association, Japan (HBA)—but last November he had another accomplishment to add to his growing name, after having been awarded a Medal with Yellow Ribbon, which is granted to those who act as an ideal model with dedication to one's profession, by the Japanese government. Watanabe was the first bartender to have ever received this honor.
After being trained at the Hotel's Sky Bar Polestar and elsewhere, Watanabe won the top award in the "HBA Original Cocktail Competition," one of the most prestigious cocktail contests of Japan, in 1986. He was only 25 years old then. In 2005, he was honored with the "Tokyo Meister" by Tokyo Metropolitan Government, a distinction granted to professionals with laudable skills. Previously in 2004, he had launched an effort to offer non-alcohol cocktails at all the restaurants and bars of the hotel, with the intention to "let those who do not take in alcohol enjoy all the pleasures of bar-going as well." Other notable highlights of Watanabe's story include his enthusiastic training of younger bartenders, being selected HBA's youngest-ever chairperson in 2006, and winning the Contemporary Master Craftsman Award in 2011 from Japan's Health, Labour and Welfare Ministry, for his unparalleled skill. In the following year, France's Ordre des Coteaux de Champagne certified Watanabe as a chevalier, demonstrating the high regard in which he is held both domestically and internationally.
MedalTo celebrate Watanabe's receiving of the Medal, this January the Keio Plaza Hotel held a cocktail fair at its bars and lounges, offering three cocktails that showcased both his mastery and his leadership.
Look to expect more from Watanabe in the years ahead, as he plans to continue his work with the Keio Plaza Hotel. "I hope to create and offer cocktails that serve as the threshold to the glamorous and exciting world of bars and liquors, with all it has to offer."


Spreading Japan's Traditions around the World—Right here in the Keio Plaza Hotel
ChopsticksAs winter shifted into spring, the Keio Plaza Hotel held two in-house events to let the guests experience different aspects of Japan's culture.
In December last year, the Hashi ("Chopsticks") Exhibition made the 3-fl. Art Lobby come to life with the history and the story of chopsticks, while displaying and selling more than 500 different varieties. Some were ornamented with real sea shells, and some were created by the traditional lacquerware school of Wakasa nuri, which paints the same item with many layers of lacquer. In addition, Duo Fourchettes, a restaurant of ours, offered some special French and Italian meals prepared by its head chef to be specially enjoyed with chopsticks.
Hina-matsuri Hina-matsuri ("Girls' doll festival") has long been a much-appreciated annual event in the hotel. From January to March, it captivated visitors with its ambience of grace and warmth. The lobby and some other places inside the hotel were decorated with some 4,700 handmade hung ornaments crafted masterfully with precious antique silk cloth. Also displayed were some 100 inu bako (literally, "box dogs"), or small pairs of male-and-female dog-shaped boxes. These containers have served as charms against evil since antiquity, based on the belief that they loyally protect humans from numerous evils. Because dogs often give birth with ease to many puppies that usually flourish in good health, inu bako have long been popular marital gifts in Japan. Those boxes were traditionally placed in many rooms where women of the upper class gave birth. Later the dogs could serve as attractive ornaments for the Japanese girls' doll festival.
As events like this show, the Keio Plaza Hotel continues to be a beating heart of diversity amid the vigor of Tokyo, helping to share Japan's unique culture with the whole world.

Series: Scenes from Japanese Society
Volume 31: Spring—When the freshness of "new leaves" heralds the season of new beginnings
WakabaSpring is the season when the buds of flowers and plants burst forth, the frigid days of the previous few months can at last be forgotten. Now new vegetation decorates the previously bare branches and sticks, reminding us that it is never too late to start over and begin anew.
In Japan, new spring leaves often symbolize such new beginnings. For instance, new drivers (those who have had their licenses for less than a year) must remind the world of this fact with "new driver's signs" in the shape of new leaves for their cars. The sign is commonly called the "wakaba (young leaves) mark."
In many educational institutions in Japan, the school year begins in April. Also, in a number of offices, the fiscal year begins around the same time. This is the season when many fresh graduates join companies as new employees. Whether its school or work, it seems like everybody is kicking off something.
Indeed, April is the month of wakaba for all of Japan, and the streets take on a glow of hopeful optimism that may come from our dreams inside as much as the presence of new life on actual trees.

Sky Bar Polestar
Enjoy the Best Cocktails while You Let the City Work Its Magic
(45th floor, Main Tower)
Business Hours:
5:00 P.M. to 11:30 P.M.
(Last order: 11:00 P.M.)
47 seats
NakaneSky Bar Polestar is a place like nowhere else, where Tokyo's best cocktails await you in front of a cityscape framed by dazzling picture windows. The mellow interior and the sophisticated service also remind visitors that this is one of the city's best places for relaxing after a busy day. The bartenders here are known as winners of many competitions both domestic and global, and the bar offers a tempting variety of drinks, snacks, and dinners. The course dinner reflects each season and is arranged to go perfectly with the drinks.
Its captain bartender, Yosuke Nakane, says, "We have our own innovations to make good liquors even better. For instance, a "salty dog" is a very common cocktail, yet we peel grapefruits and let them rest overnight to bring out their hidden sweetness. Also, following the British style, we use gin in place of vodka. Our customers are quite diverse—some just relax alone, while others spend precious time together as couples or in large, vivacious groups."
"The constantly changing sunset cityscape brings new beauty with each moment," Nakane muses. "Come by Polestar to experience it all and let the stress just melt away."

Polestar


Series: Seasonal Adventures in Japanese Dining
Volume 9: Sea Bream—Rich Flavors, Brilliant Colors, and Unforgettable Meals
Tai-chazukeTai (sea bream) is a generic Japanese term for fish of the family Sparidae in the order Perciformes, which comes in a great variety of hues. Red sea bream and their black, yellowback, and crimson cousins (among others) have long held a particular place in Japanese cuisine, where they are appreciated for their flavor that is both richly distinctive and elegantly subtle. Tai is presented in a wide array of styles, from raw sashimi slices to broiled and boiled selections, and those served with tasty broth or warm bowls of rice. Red and crimson tai are especially cherished, as their coloration is believed to bring good fortune and they are considered to be an essential part of celebrations.
Although these fish are tasty year-round, spring is a particularly noteworthy time to give tai a try, with the so-called pinkish sakura dai (literally, "cherry blossom sea bream") echoing the pink cherry blossoms that cover much of Japan's solid ground around the same time of year. Many say these "cherry sea breams" have the best taste of all.
Here at the Keio Plaza Hotel, some Japanese restaurants, such as "Soujuan," "Kagari," among others, are offering seasonal specialties to celebrate the joy of tai. For more information, please feel free to ask at each restaurant.

For Members of the Executive International Club
Special Privileges for EIC Members
Customers staying with us at EIC member rates will be entitled to many special services and privileges, including use of The Club Lounge, free breakfast, and free extension of checkout time to 3:00 P.M.
*These privileges do not apply to guests staying at rates other than EIC member rates.


LoungeUse of The Club Lounge
The Club Lounge is open to EIC members staying with us at member rates, as well as their guests. In the lounge, guests can enjoy coffee, tea, and other amenities in a self-service environment during business hours.

Location:
South Tower, 34th Floor

Seating Capacity:
28 (20 in the lounge area and a private room with 8 seats)

Hours:
1:00 P.M. to 9:00 P.M.
Free for EIC members staying with us at member rates; 2,000 yen for each additional guest

*Meeting Room is also available (up to 8 people):
1:00 P.M. to 9:00 P.M.
8,000 yen for the first two hours; 4,000 yen for each additional hour
*Use of meeting room is available only to customers staying at EIC member rates.
*Meeting room cost includes self-service drinks and snacks.
*Advanced reservations are recommended.
*To use or make a reservation for a meeting room, please contact The Club Lounge staff.

Complimentary Breakfast for EIC Members
For EIC members staying with us at member rates, we offer free breakfast.
Free for EIC members staying with us at member rates; 2,600 yen per person for their guests

Free Extension of Checkout Time
Upon request, EIC members staying with us at member rates can have their checkout time extended up to 3:00 P.M., depending on the room reservation situation.

Running
In recent years in Japan, running has been a quietly growing trend and practiced by many as an effective means to stay in good shape, both for the health and appearance benefits this sport provides. A certain athletic foundation published a statistical estimate at the end of last year, guessing that the nation's population of runners had reached a robust 10 million.
Not only are male runners increasing—the numbers of their female counterparts have also been growing, with certain well-known models joining the craze. Fashionable sportswear for joggers came to market as well. In the streets around Tokyo's Imperial Palace, a popular jogging course, there are even some "running stations" equipped with shower booths and lockers.
This boom saw its origin in 2007 with the "Tokyo Marathon," the first major urban running event of that magnitude in the nation. Some 300,000 runners, an all-time high thus far, applied to run in the full "Tokyo Marathon 2013" on Sunday, February 24th. This was 10 times the maximum capacity, and some 30,000 were chosen to run by lottery. The Keio Plaza Hotel was the starting point of this heated race.

Running
Gourmet Foods Perfectly Balanced by the Magnificence of "Lladro",
as Only the Keio Plaza Hotel Can Do
LladroThis year, from May 1st through 31st, the Keio Plaza Hotel will host a special exhibition of Lladro, a Spanish brand of porcelain art. Since 2010, we have been holding Lladro shows under colorful, carefully thought-out themes. Numerous guests have stopped by to delight in all the brilliant details that are the hallmarks of this porcelain brand. These shows have displayed some rare antique and larger works as well.
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the brand's founding as well as the 400th year of Spain-Japan fellowship. To celebrate these milestones, the exhibition this year will be more gorgeous than ever. The show showcases the 60 years of the brand's history thus far with panels and precious works representative of each period of time. Those works are not produced anymore and usually kept in the "Lladro Museum" in Spain. Moreover, Lladro will release some brand-new works for the celebration. Some 20 of them will be displayed with explanatory panels and sold at the event. In an additional commemoration of the 400-year Spain-Japan friendship, Super Buffet Glass Court will hold a "Spain Fair" and decorate itself with some panels related to the exhibition. Some other restaurants in the hotel will also be gearing up for the event with special foods and exhibitions of works.

Special Promotional Rate for EIC Members
In gratitude for your patronage, the Keio Plaza Hotel is pleased to offer a special promotional rate denominated in U.S. dollars for a limited time. Available for an extended time in response to guest appreciation, the special rate offers savings over even the EIC member rate. We invite all EIC members to visit the Keio Plaza Hotel and take advantage of this occasion.

 
Special Promotional Rate
EIC Member Rate
Type of Room
Single
Double/Twin
Single
Double/Twin
Standard (Remodeled)
US$220
US$270
¥25,500
¥30,000
(¥20,460)
(¥25,110)
(US$274)
(US$323)
Plaza Comfort
US$250
US$300
¥26,000
¥30,500
(¥23,250)
(¥27,900)
(US$280)
(US$328)
Plaza Premier
US$280
US$330
¥28,400
¥32,900
(¥26,040)
(¥30,690)
(US$305)
(US$354)

* As the table shows, while the EIC member rate is set in Japanese yen, the special promotional rate is denominated in US dollars. Guests can pay both rates in either dollars or yen. Please note that the applicable exchange rate will be the rate indicated at our Front Cashier on the day of your check-in.
* In the table above, the values in “( )” were calculated using an exchange rate of US$1 = ¥93. Such figures are hypothetical examples that are only meant to provide a rough idea of current rates, and they are neither binding nor official hotel rates.

* The rates indicated include room fees, breakfast, service charge, consumption tax, and accommodation tax.
* A guest staying at a special promotional rate is entitled to the following:
1) Complimentary daily breakfast
2) Use of The Club Lounge
(Coffee, tea, and other amenities are available.)
* Free for guests staying at special rates; 2,000 JPY per person for their guests.
3) Late check-out (until 3 P. M.)
possible upon request, subject to availability.
We Would Appreciate Any Comments
We hope you have enjoyed this newsletter. We would appreciate any comments that you might have about the newsletter or the hotel.
Please send your comments to:

Customer Relations
Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo
2-2-1 Nishi-Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-8330 Japan
E-mail: customer-rlt@keioplaza.co.jp
Fax: +81-3-5322-8118

Use of Personal Information
Personal Information received from Members (hereinafter called "Personal Information"), such as names, addresses, company names, and e-mail addresses, will be used for the purpose of sending newsletters about our services to such Members. The Keio Plaza Hotel chain will obtain, use, and store personal information about Members (such as names or addresses) only for the Keio Plaza Executive International Club (EIC), and will never use such information for any other purpose.

Deep Relaxation at Keio Plaza Hotel
Carju RajahCarju Rajah, a luxury esthetic salon on the 8th floor of the South Tower, opened on December 1st, 2008. The salon has quickly become known for its excellent skills, sincere hospitality, and refined interior. Individual treatment rooms equipped with showers provide true relaxation for both males and females. Discount rates are even available for visitors who are staying with us. For more information, please contact Guest Relations.

The Business Center
on the 3rd Floor of the Main Tower
The Business Center has opened on the 3rd floor of the Main Tower, where the lobby is located. The Center offers rental cell phones, fax and photocopy services, arrangement of interpretation and translation as well as of international delivery services, business card printing, and other conveniences. Windows PCs (connected to the Internet) and printers are also available. The Center has been renewed to provide everything necessary for efficient business activities.

The Business Center's business hours
Monday through Friday: 8:00 A.M. to 10:00 P.M.
Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays: 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

* The coin-operated PCs at the entrance to the Center are available 24 hours per day. Please help yourself.

* The Center offers the following pay services, among others:
1. Photocopies (monochrome and full-color)
2. Fax transmission
3. Rental cellular phones
4. Arrangement of interpretation and translation services
5. Typing
6. Arrangement of international delivery service
7. Internet connection
8. Business card printing

EIC Advantages
Card
By enrolling in the Executive International Club, you will be eligible to receive a variety of special services and discounts reserved exclusively for EIC members. We cordially invite all members of the Executive International Club to stay with us and experience these advantages.
·
Free use of The Club Lounge, exclusively reserved for EIC members
·
Extended late check-out until 3:00 P.M. upon request (subject to availability)
·
Early check-in at 11:00 A.M. upon request (subject to availability)
·
Priority room reservations
·
Frequent flyer mileage points with our 16 participating airline partners

*These privileges above do not apply to guests staying at rates other than EIC member rates.

Joining is easy. Simply stop by the front desk, visit our web site, or write to the Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo.
http://www.keioplaza.com/eic/index.html

Frequent Flyer Mileage Points
Earn miles when using the following Frequent Flyer Programs. Points will be provided at eligible room rates or higher. To claim points, simply present your FFP membership card upon check-in.
Participating Airlines
MILEAGE PLAN
500 miles per stay
AADVANTAGE
500 miles per stay
ANA (ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS)
500 miles per stay
ASIA MILES
500 miles per stay
FLYINGBLUE (AIR FRANCE/KLM)
500 miles per stay
EXECUTIVE CLUB (BRITISH AIRWAYS)
500 miles per stay
ENRICH
600 miles per stay
KINGFISHER
600 miles per stay
KRISFLYER (SINGAPORE AIRLINES)
500 miles per stay
JAL (JAPAN AIRLINES)
500 miles per stay
JET AIRWAYS
600 miles per stay
SKYPASS (KOREAN AIR)
500 miles per stay
FREQUENT FLYER (QANTAS)
1,000 miles per stay
MILEAGEPLUS (UNITED)
500 miles per stay
VIRGIN ATLANTIC
750 miles per stay
VARIG BRAZIL
1,000 miles per stay

To Make Your Next Reservation
Summit
The Keio Plaza Hotel is a member of Summit Hotels & Resorts, an international luxury hotel group. To make your next reservation with us, please contact phone numbers below.
*
Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo
Tel: +81-3-5322-8000
Fax: +81-3-3345-8269
*
Los Angeles Sales Office
Toll free: +1-800-222-5346
*
Online Reservations
http://www.keioplaza.com
*
Summit Hotels & Resorts
Worldwide (toll free): +1-506-637-0760
United States and Canada: +1-800-457-4000
United Kingdom: +00800-3237-5001
Hong Kong, SAR: +800-96-3365
North China: +10-800-650-0379
South China: +10-800-265-0387
Singapore: +1-800-227-3126