In the past year or so, waterside (either river or bay) establishments of all sorts have been popping up like daisies in Tokyo. Playing directly into the hands of this emerging (and very welcome, we think) trend is the somewhat clunkily named Share Hotels Lyuro Tokyo Kiyosumi, which opened its doors along the Sumida River on April 14.
More than just another shoddily decorated and questionably priced hipster hostel, it's set in a beautifully renovated building and puts its connection with the surrounding neighbourhood first.
A steady second in the priority order at Lyuro is the nautically themed décor: think water-inspired graphics on the wallpaper and room signs, which create an almost believable illusion of strolling around on a very big ship.
The rooms are divided into privates and dorms. All 18 of the former face the river, which means they boast great views – from the bathroom, that is. And to make your bath time even more enjoyable, they've installed speakers and portable TVs – all supposedly waterproof, we're happy to report – next to the tubs.
Lyuro's choice of neighbourhood was no accident either. Mainly targeting visitors who have been to Tokyo multiple times and are now looking to get under the skin of the capital, it's located close to both the Tokyo Museum of Contemporary Art and Kiyosumi Garden.
Kiyosumi also offers plenty of off-the-beaten-track attractions, small restaurants, trendy cafés and quirky galleries. The folks behind Lyuro are planning to have local artists exhibit and sell their creations at the hostel, which is also set to deal in books and hold events in collaboration with the neighbourhood's galleries.
Even if you're not staying the night, it's worth making the trek over to Kiyosumi for Lyuro's river terrace, which is open to the public and even got a little boost from the metro government, which is bidding to revitalise the capital's riverside areas.
Kick back and enjoy slow-smoked barbecue grub, including pulled pork and spare ribs, at the Pitmans restaurant, and have a cold 'Augsbeer' to go with it – this craft beer is set to be the signature sud of Kiyosumi's first microbrewery, which is gearing up for a June opening.
Water from the Sumida was mixed with the paint to create this wallpaper