As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’m aiming to hit Diamond Medallion status on Delta this year, and needed about ~10,000 flown MQMs in order to qualify for Diamond Medallion status (since I expect to get another 15,000 MQMs from my Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card). So when a (Diamond Medallion) friend pitched a four-day weekend in Tokyo and offered up two of his Global Upgrade certificates to me for the trip, I couldn’t pass it up — especially because I’d never been to Tokyo before and it was on my “bucket list.”
Booking the airlines tickets was actually fairly easy. Economy airfares from Los Angeles to Tokyo were around ~$850 on Delta, and we both called the Diamond line together to inquire about flight availability where we could instantly confirm our upgrades. As it turns out, we could confirm two business class seats on the outbound and return on our preferred dates, but only on the LAX to Haneda Airport route, on which Delta flies its 767-300, as opposed to the more popular route to Narita, on which Delta flies its 777 (with herringbone seats in Delta One).
My friend had two unredeemed free night certificates from signing up for the Chase Hyatt Visa, so we decided that for two of the nights in Tokyo we would stay at the fabled Park Hyatt Tokyo, which is a Category 7 Hyatt and one of its most exclusive properties. The other two nights, I decided to use a combination of cash and points (12,500 points plus $150 per night) to try out the brand-new Andaz Tokyo, which is a Category 6.
Although we were spending four nights in Tokyo, the timing of our Delta flights meant that we’d be landing at Haneda at 10:30pm on a Saturday, and flying back out of Haneda very late night the following Wednesday (technically, Thursday morning at 12:30am). We both decided that we wanted to maximize our time at the Park Hyatt, so we booked the Park Hyatt for the last two nights, and the Andaz for the first two.
They say hindsight is 20/20, but as you’ll see in this forthcoming trip report, there’s a spectacularly luxurious, jaw-dropping, top-of-the-line Hyatt property in Tokyo… but it may not be the one you think.
I’m excited to share the details of this quick little jaunt for you guys, and thanks in advance for reading!
NRT has higher usage mainly because it's the "hub" airport for onward travel to the rest of Asia. However, the locals immensely prefer HND due to to proximity and transit connections. It's like how most native New Yorkers would prefer to use the close-in LGA rather than the long-haul out to JFK. JFK is the "bigger" airport but it's much easier to get into the City from LGA. Similarly, there are landing slot restrictions...
NRT has higher usage mainly because it's the "hub" airport for onward travel to the rest of Asia. However, the locals immensely prefer HND due to to proximity and transit connections. It's like how most native New Yorkers would prefer to use the close-in LGA rather than the long-haul out to JFK. JFK is the "bigger" airport but it's much easier to get into the City from LGA. Similarly, there are landing slot restrictions in place at the 'more convenient, close-in' location.
I want to second @Ash's question. How do you use the Hyatt free night certificates if they're not traveling with you?
So I know that HND is more centrally located than NRT but given that the NRT route seems to be so much more popular, why is there so much fighting between the airlines over the limited slots at HND?
This is set to be an awesome trip. Can't wait to hear thoughts primarily on the hotels, but also as a DL Diamond on the flights. Hope you had fun, looking forward to reading.
So will you guys pay for the late check out or do you get it for free or something in this case?
Anyways, this really takes the cake. Nick is back!
Anyways, peace out.
Lucky that you were able to get the Andaz for points and cash. I was in Tokyo in August, and there was no points and cash availability at any Hyatts in the city. Ended up paying the full rate at the Andaz. Look forward to hearing your review.
Andaz Tokyo is one of my favorite hotels hands down. Must check out the pool, gym and hard to find water massage chairs. Stayed at both Park Hyatt and Andaz and we changed our reservation to stay at Andaz instead. And, on Friday nights you are close to local bars where the local businessmen party and watch baseball, soccer, etc.... We were the only tourists and everybody was buying rounds. Amazing night and amazing hotel.
Yes, I am also looking forward to your review of both, I am flying with my wife and child later in 2016 to Tokyo for 6 nights, I would also like to know which is better with a toddler and which is better for touristy things( proximity to public transportation, central location etc). As it stands right now I was planning on staying at the Park Hyatt using combination of points, free night certificates and cash.
Can you use someone else's Hyatt free night certs to stay at this ph property, if they are not traveling with you?
I love Tokyo - please share some of your dining experiences in this trip report.
I'm really excited to see your review of the Andaz! I'm planning a one night stop in Tokyo in Jan and couldn't find and reviews of the new Andaz. It's prices seem higher than the PH. I'm also curious to know which place you'd recommend if you only had one night.
@Josh R: That's strange that it is priced higher than the Park Hyatt, but I'd probably recommend the Andaz even at a higher price, even for just one night.
Quick question for ya. Do you have to be traveling with your friend to use his global upgrades or can he gift them to you (or anyone) like American's SWUs?