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Keisuke Nakamura

“Tokyo Stay Story” illustrates stays at Hotel New Otani Tokyo through the experience of featured guests. We welcome Keisuke Nakamura for this fifth installment who is an architect, interior designer, and head of design firm “DAIKEI MILLS” as well as being the instigator of the acclaimed “SKWAT” movement that seeks to fill in vacant spaces around the city with art and culture.

Mr. Nakamura stayed in our Executive Junior Suite at EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN that has been honored with the highest accolade of five stars for the second year running for 2021 by Forbes Travel Guide, the global rating standard for luxury hotels, restaurants, and spas. The 76m² suite has a separate living room and bedroom, allowing for a change of environment between work and rest. The suite’s chic decor in subdued colors of black and white provides a calming air of relaxation. The Rose Garden is visible from the full-height windows and may provide a vista of stunning blooms of 30,000 red roses when in season.

DAY 1 10:00pm

Nighttime Arrival
- Late Check-In -


One weekday night, Mr. Nakamura arrives at Hotel New Otani Tokyo at 10:00pm to check-in after work. Although a late check-in seems wasteful in terms of making the most of a hotel stay, it is not the case here as Mr. Nakamura has chosen the “ZEN 24h Escape – Stay as you like –” accommodation plan. This exclusive limited-time offer allows guests to check-in at their preferred time for a full 24-hour stay to follow. Under this plan that breaks the norm of hotel accommodation, Mr. Nakamura can enjoy his stay until 10:00pm the following day in accordance to his check-in time the previous day.


“I often work late so I truly appreciate this accommodation style. It allows guests to check-in at night for a good rest and sleep, then venture out the next morning while having the room throughout the day. I can even arrive on the last train to check-in late at night, then enjoy the day that follows and take the last train out. It allows you to maximize your day and stay”, comments Mr. Nakamura.

We asked Mr. Nakamura, who often dines at the hotel’s various restaurants, if he had a favorite place in the hotel.

“The entire establishment is magnificent. From the overall structure, to the garden, to the general atmosphere, there is a sense of care and warmth as well as of history that beautifully exists together. Personally, I find it very soothing. For example, the promenade of shops along both sides of the reception area on the second floor has a classic look. It may seem slightly old-fashioned but it is precisely that factor that exudes an essence of authenticity when it is immaculately integrated within the modern construct. I feel it’s something we need to go back to every now and then—or perhaps now, more than ever.”

ZEN 24h Escape

“ZEN 24h Escape - Stay as you like -”
Accommodation Plan

The five-star EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN opens new frontiers of hospitality with this exclusive accommodation plan, allowing guests to check in at the time of their choice, and stay for a full twenty-four hours to follow. Maximize your hotel experience through a special expedition into the world of ‘ZEN’.

DAY 1 10:30pm

Executive Junior Suite

エグゼクティブ デラックス

Upon entering the suite, Mr. Nakamura sets down his luggage and walks through the rooms, taking in the details of the layout. What was the architectural prodigy’s first impression of our Executive Junior Suite?

“I see that the suite is structured in a way that is wide, horizontally, as you enter. Moving through the suite, the different rooms appear before you one after another. The layout breeds a certain curiosity and excitement as you open each door being greeted with a different scene on the other side”.


Already feeling at home, Mr. Nakamura indulged in some Champagne and chocolates to unwind before retiring for the night. As relaxed as he was, his professional mind continued its churn as his eyes scanned the room.

“In the living room, the sofa is placed perpendicular to the windows, while in the bedroom, the beds are aligned parallel to the windows. Normally, you often place beds along the longitudinal direction so that the room appears larger. Not the case here. These furniture placements are intriguing and attractive to me. Each and every room is never too big, striking the perfect balance between spacious and cozy. Personally, I feel very much at ease.”


Blissful Room Service

Indulge in exquisite restaurant-quality dining in the comfort and privacy of your room.

DAY 2 10:30am

A Leisurely Morning
- Continental Breakfast -


Spending a relaxed, unhurried morning compared to normal, Mr. Nakamura decides on Room Service to enjoy breakfast in the comfort of his suite.

“I usually wake up around 6:30am and immediately check my e-mails. I am a short-sleeper and not really the type that enjoys sitting around for too long. So that’s my daily routine, but when I am in a different environment, away from home, I feel tempted to do things that I ordinarily wouldn’t. I think it worthwhile to occasionally take a detour from the norm. It makes the day a special one. On a usual day, I just have a quick coffee and some fruit, and then I am out the door. But today, here I am taking my time enjoying this excellent breakfast in the calm quiet of this marvelous suite. For me, this is true luxury”.


Select from Six Breakfast Choices

Six exquisite breakfast options are available for guests of EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN. At a restaurant or the ZEN Lounge, or in the comfort of your room, start the day as you desire with your choice of gastronomical pleasure.

DAY 2 11:30am

Working in Solitude
- Living Room -


After breakfast, Mr. Nakamura moves to the living room area where he opens his laptop and turns to work mode. His main duty is designing, to which he devotes most of his time while at the office, but when he is staying at a hotel, he often attends to any paperwork and other tasks that he needs to get done.

“I tend to get more paperwork done in a hotel room than at the office. Preparing documents, answering e-mails, etc., things that I unintentionally put off on a normal workday. Some people I know say they like working on their designs while staying at hotels. The inspirations for my designs and ideas come more from within the realm of normalcy and routine. When I am at the firm, I tend to focus on working as a team. When I am alone, like I am now, I find it effective to work on things that I can do at my own pace.”


Luxury Suites with Japanese Hospitality

Ultimate luxury and comfort with the highest standard of Japanese hospitality are offered at EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN. The modern yet elegant rooms are designed with traditional Japanese influences, incorporating elements as stones, bamboo, charcoal, hemp, and Japanese Washi paper, as well as Sumi art by Japanese calligrapher Shotei Ibata decorating the walls.

DAY 2 4:00pm

Client Meeting
- ZEN Lounge -

Client Meeting

Mr. Nakamura heads to the ZEN Lounge for a meeting with one of his clients. He orders a coffee and some pastries from the “Afternoon Tea” lineup of the Food Presentation, served six times a day at the ZEN Lounge which is exclusive to guests of EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN, and sits down for his meeting.

“A majority of our work often needs to be kept confidential, at least until a certain point, so it is important to conduct meetings in a private environment. This Lounge is quiet and its access is limited only to guests of EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN, so it’s ideal to have such a space available at any time during my stay”.

ZEN Lounge

ZEN Lounge

Guests of EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN have exclusive access to the “ZEN Lounge” that offers 24-hour concierge service as well as an exquisite food presentation served six times a day, free of charge. Check-in and check-out procedures for EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN guests are also handled here.

*Guests staying at EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN may invite non-guests to join them in the ZEN Lounge, subject to a visitors’ fee.

DAY 2 7:00pm



After the meeting, Mr. Nakamura made his way to the top floor of the Garden Tower to have dinner at the BELLA VISTA restaurant.
BELLA VISTA offers fine Western cuisine made from carefully selected ingredients. Exquisite charcoal-grilled items are one of its specialties, as well as fresh hotel-made pasta, which particularly enthralled Mr. Nakamura.


“From the appetizers to dessert, I can tell that everything is prepared with precision and perfection. The highest of culinary quality is represented in each dish with a taste that is sophisticated yet somehow familiar and comforting. It is fine dining that you would love to frequent. Also, I must mention that the restaurant staff were absolutely wonderful! The hospitality was top-grade with a genuineness in their demeanor. Not the generic, by-the-book service, but something that conveyed warmth and personality, which, when combined with attention and thoughtfulness, was simply engaging”.


Western Cuisine

BELLA VISTA offers delightful Western cuisine, from charcoal-grilled specialties to hotel-made fresh pasta, along with a breathtaking view of Tokyo from the 40th floor of the Garden Tower. Enjoy exquisite dishes prepared with the finest ingredients in the open kitchen where seasoned chefs are at work.

DAY 2 9:00pm

A Drink Before Departure
- Bar Capri -


With an hour to go in his 24-hour stay at EXECUTIVE HOUSE ZEN, Mr. Nakamura prepares for his departure and then drops in at ‘Bar Capri’ for a drink to conclude his sojourn.

“I normally like to stick to my routine. Whether it be a workday or a weekend, I tend not to deviate too much from what I usually do. So, this stay, checking-in at night and spending a whole twenty-four hours here at the hotel, was atypical to me and I truly enjoyed it. With time and experience, one’s responsibility grows, and I find myself dwelling on my work much more than I used to. Especially recently, I have come to realize that you need to take time off to reset your mind or break away from your routine. This stay was definitely a good ‘resetting’ moment for me. I look forward to making the time again, consciously, to have this sort of atypical experience, to reset myself occasionally, and treasure the time that I have for myself”.


Main Bar
Bar Capri

The seven-piece series of Capri island paintings by Paul Augustin Aïzpiri that grace the walls of Bar Capri was exclusively painted for this location. Immerse yourself in the refined ambience of the room with piano music setting the mood, and enjoy exclusive cocktails that have won worldwide competitions.

DAY 2 10:00pm


Keisuke Nakamura

Keisuke Nakamura

Keisuke Nakamura is an architect/interior designer and head of DAIKEI MILLS, a Tokyo-based interior design firm.
“Things to things, place to place, people to people – to shorten each distance” is the concept at the core of his team.
Nakamura has garnered acclaim for his various works on both commercial and public facilities with his creative designs that are heavily inspired by artistic abstractness, elaborateness, and aesthetics.
Understanding the existing space and its potential in terms of use in the current climate, he carefully selects the materials, masterfully blends flat and sculptural surfaces, and transforms voids into site-specific structures to optimize the environment.
In 2020, Nakamura launched the “SKWAT” project that seeks and occupies idle structures and vacant spaces around the city for a regeneration to give them new cultural worth and life.

Photographer Junpei Kato