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Fancy a siesta? Tokyo capsule hotel offers three-hour stays

Glansit hotel to feature plush mattresses and large public baths

Capsule rooms will be equipped with a newly-developed mattress by Nishikawa.

TOKYO -- A planned capsule hotel in Tokyo will target not only overnight guests but also women seeking a place to take a quick nap during the day, by allowing a minimum length of stay of three hours.

Tokyo-based internet cafe operator Bagus will open its first Glansit hotel in the capital's Akihabara electronics district in October.

Located about a three-minute walk from Akihabara Station, the hotel will rise 10 stories aboveground and have one underground story and cover a total area of about 1,090 sq. meters. The basic offering will be 130 capsule units but there are options for private-style rooms fitted with a desk. There are 16 single and eight twin rooms.

Bagus' core businesses are internet cafes, billiard halls, darts bars and golf lesson studios as part of the Diamond Dining group.

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This artist's rendition shows a lounge space that has a desk and magazines and offers free drinks.

"By drawing on the know-how acquired through the operation of internet cafes, we will offer a capsule hotel that is one level higher than others by equipping it with a functional and comfortable environment," said Bagus President Kenichi Yaguchi.

The mattress in the capsule rooms was developed specially by Tokyo-based major bedding company Nishikawa Sangyo.

On the gender-segregated floor, there will be a large public bath and powder room for women, which will offer made-in-Japan amenities. A gender-segregated lounge will have a desk and magazines and offer 30 kinds of beverages for free.

The anticipated guests for the hotel are travelers mostly from foreign countries, as well as women.

Hotel rates will be based on the length of stay. Visitors in principle will choose from five options -- three, five, eight, 17 or 19 hours.

The rates will vary by time of week (weekday or weekend) and season (peak or slow period). The 17-hour stay, for instance, will cost from 3,000 yen to about 7,000 yen ($26 to $62)

The average spend per guest is expected to be around 5,000 yen.

Through the operation of internet cafes, Bagus believes there is demand for places to take a break from work and study during daytime hours.

To cut personnel costs, the hotel will allow guests who book online and pay by credit card to check in simply by depositing their shoes in an individual box at the entrance, and then holding their shoe box key over a device installed at the reception area upon their arrival.

Guests will be able to check in even without a reservation, using a tablet computer.

Bagus plans to increase the number of its capsule hotels to 10, mainly in commercial areas and tourist spots in the three metropolitan areas of Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka.

The Japanese government has set a goal of boosting foreign tourist numbers by 60% from 2016 to 40 million people by 2020.

To alleviate the expected accommodation shortages, Bagus will also seek to meet demand from business travelers.

(Nikkei)

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