Capsule Hotel : Yay or Nay?

Accommodation will be very important to consider while you going to travel. Main consideration to choose is budget but that is not the only one. You might choose based on location and other personal preference.

There are hotel, hostel, apartment, the new booming one – Airbnb or even relatives place (ah this might be a great one compared to others). That option comes also with the different type of rooms deluxe, standard, queen, triple, dormitory. But have you heard about capsule type?

First time I know this type was when I saw some random dorama (Japanese drama haha). Lately, I know this type of accommodation is popular in Japan especially big city like Tokyo. In a big city with hustle and bustle atmosphere place for sleeping in short time might be needed. Not because they don’t have money to stay in a hotel but why have to pay extra money in luxury place while all they need is a bed to sleep? Well, it might be the reason why.

Now capsule hotel/hostel not only popular for Japanese but also tourist because it is not bad at all to choose it as your accommodation. Let me compare two types of a capsule hotel, the old (or original?) and the modern one.

Old (or original) capsule.

I booked the place only based on the location and some review in Agoda. The location is important should be near MRT, subway, or bus it makes us easier to explore the place around. Review also one of consideration to see some plus and negative comment from the previous visitor.

Hostel name that I booked was Capsule Hotel Asakusa Riverside mentioned in Agoda BUT the fact that hostel name was Hotel New Gyomin-so. I was skipped to saw the detailed review in Agoda for this different name then make me spend about 15 minutes walking round the area to searching this place! I was so confused that time and asked some pedestrian (I choose Japanese) to show me the direction and she can’t speak English completely! Thanks she notice my desperate gesture and accompany me to find the location and double thanks that the place only opposite from we stand. This mess was because I’m late to know the changing name T.T

This place in 9 floors oil building and strategic location because it was near from Asakusa Station – (Ginza Line) exit 4, food restaurant (FYI, there is HALAL kebab food just across the road) and Sensoji temple as it was located in Asakusa area. Since the named of this hostel mentioned riverside then you can see Sumida river right from the window.

There is only receptionist table (I think 24hrs), locker shoes and vending machine. After complete registration and stuff, we will get the number of a locker, put our shoes in a locker, and change our shoes with their slipper. Thank God that the receptionist could speak English even only a few words.

Female room and male room separate. I got the key which mentioned bed number and locker number. Inside locker, you will get a towel, pajama and toothbrush set. You can use a locker to save some stuff but suggested not put your important one like wallet, passport or phone.

There is only big room for female in the 5th floor. Room consist of upper and down side bed which is total roughly 20 beds. Toilet and bathroom as sharing. Toilet outside the room while bathroom available on the 7th floor. The bathroom here is just like onsen type you can read in the previous post – Kawaguchiko. There are many sinks and some hairdryer attached there so no need worries to bad hair day.

You can use the 9th floor as sharing a kitchen. You can put your food and drink in a refrigerator and heat up your meal in microwave. You can use this floor to make social interaction, to other guests while eating as well. Drink vending machine is available every floor in case you thirsty and lazy to go outside.



It cost me less than 300K to stay one night here.

Modern capsule

Still in Asakusa area, hostel name is Bunka Hostel Tokyo. Nearest subway station to this place is about 5 Minutes Minute from Asakusa Station (Ginza Line, Asakusa Line, Tobu Rail Way) or Tawaramachi Station (Ginza Line) 1 minutes from Tsukuba Express Asakusa Station. Located inside the shushiya-dori (sushiya street) area so you only take 10 walking step to 24hr Mc Donald to feed your starving food in the middle of the night and 20 walking step to 24hr Don Quijote store to feed your shopping lust. You need less than 5 minutes to be in Sensoji temple.

Bunka has total 7 floors. There are receptionist table (I think 24hrs also) with staff who can speak English fluently, small restaurant attached with small lobby and vending machine of course. This hostel just established on 2015 so the you can directly feel so modern yet comfy. Registration process will not different but here you don’t need to change your shoes with slipper. You will get card as your access to pointed floor and piece of paper to show you the location of your bed, locker number, and PIN for open the locker.

Female room and male room separate are also separate floor. They give towel and toothbrush and slipper also as compliment (but you can’t bring the towel when check out of course). Room consist of upper and down side bed which is total roughly 128 beds. Toilet and bathroom as sharing but in same floor as our room. Bathroom is regular type with one shower. There are also many sink and hairdryer attached. Sharing kitchen also available and you can use just same as old types.



It was cost me about 700K for one night stay in Bunka.

So what is the big different between old and modern type?

As I experienced both the big different was in the type of bed. Material covered was different plastic in old and wood in modern. Also the direction of bed is different. While you have bed in upside you need to climb directly in front of your sleep mate downside.

As explained before the type of bathroom is different. If you want to try “mini onsen” you can choose the old one type but if preferred to the closed one than choose others. Another point was the staff. It was obviously to see that there was many foreigners stay in a modern hostel while Japanese prefer to the old ones. Might be related to the language of the staff, in fact, Japanese still have limitation for English.

It comes back to you to choose which one is better based on your reference point. But for me capsule hotel/hostel might be good option to stay when you think about budget accommodation and stay only for short time.

Whatever the choice is you have to feel comfy to support your enjoyable time during trip.


3 Comments Add yours

  1. Mchan says:

    I kinda like the Riverside because of the view you have from the top and the bath is not bad. Modern capsules are much larger too this summer I’m trying one in Kyoto that is more like a small room with a mini desk.

  2. Mchan says:

    I forgot to add that some capsules for women have huuuge baths more like a sento.

    1. Madewi says:

      Hi Mchan!
      Thank you for visiting my blog 🙂
      Yeah, riverside feel like authentic capsules. I have never tried for Sento. Is that good?

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