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Exclusive: Inside the Helicopter Departure Lounge at The Peninsula Hotel Tokyo

Where: Tokyo, Japan
December 6, 2010 at 9:31 AM | by | ()

If we ever win a prestigious international award or become US Ambassador to Japan, we know where we're having the after-party: The Peninsula Hotel Tokyo's Seven Seas Pacific Aviation Lounge. We're just going to call it the "heli-lounge" for short, because that's exactly what it's original function is, not to host parties. The Peninsula Hotel indeed has a private helicopter departure lounge tucked away on its top floors and we managed a rare peek inside.

Although we tried to give the best idea of the space with our photo gallery below, the heli-lounge is one of those places you must physically be in to properly appreciate the awesomeness (not to mention the open-air view over the Imperial Palace and Gardens). Peninsula Hotels are famous for the luxurious (and often, vintage) modes of transportation they have available for guests, and airport-to-hotel helicopter transfers are a signature service at The Peninsula Hong Kong, so why not in Tokyo too? Here's the thing: the Tokyo hotel may have this heli-lounge, but it doesn't yet have the helicopter flights. Bummer. Actually, great...

Although The Peninsula has built this lounge and filled it with engine replicas, Asian aviation memorabilia and other museum-ish attributes in anticipation of using it as a departure lounge for the heli-flying guests, they don't have the license to operate the helicopter transfer service. And here's a the problem: Tokyo doesn't really allow that sort of thing...yet. The jetsetting guests' loss is a gain, however, as the Seven Seas lounge is thus available to host functions, like business meetings or dinners (or our future Ambassadorship reception).

For now, guests will just have to stick to ordering up transportation from the hotel's 1934 Rolls-Royce Phantom, or a newer Phantom, or one of their custom BMWs. Commence the playing of the world's smallest violin.

[Disclosure: We were a guest of The Peninsula Tokyo for HotelChatter; getting a glimpse of this lounge was too good not to mention and all drooling, opinions and photos are totally our own]

To see all HotelChatter's photo galleries of rooms and more at The Peninsula, go here.

[All Photos: Cynthia Drescher for Jaunted]

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