Have you heard of Capsule Hotels? How did they come about? In this article, we are going to talk all about this Japanese invention, Japan's famous capsule hotels, their curiosities and origins.
The kapuseru hoteru [カプセルホテル] is a great idea, offering super cheap accommodation, without the services offered by conventional hotels. They are shared rooms with thousands of capsules that offer accommodations for a good night's sleep.
How are Japan Capsule Hotels?
The guest's accommodations are inside a modular block of plastic or fiberglass measuring 2m x 1m x 1,25m, serving as a dormitory. In addition to the capsule, the person has access to a locker with a password or key to place their valuables.
The entertainment options on the premises vary (most include a television, a console and a wireless internet connection). Some capsule hotels offer onsen, resting place, massage and other perks found in ordinary hotels.
The price depends on a lot of the location, if you are very lucky you can find between 50 to 150R $ per night. It may not seem so cheap for Brazilians, but it is very cheap for the Japanese pocket. Prices may vary according to dates and holidays.
Capsule hotels are known to house workers who miss the last train and do not want to pay for a taxi, or for those who overdo the dose of Sake in bars and karaoke.
Hostels vs Hotels capsules
If you look through Japan Hostels, you will come across some capsule hotels. The great truth is that the difference between these two places is small.
In the West most hostels tend to be small, friendly shared rooms, but in big cities like Tokyo and Kyoto, hostels are practically giant rooms with about 40 beds that look more like capsules.
I think the only difference between these Japanese hostels and capsule hotels is in the material that surrounds the bed. Hostels are usually made of wood, while traditional capsules are made of fiber or plastic.
I personally prefer the hostels for giving a more homely feel, while capsules look somewhat industrial and strange. If you want to know more about the Japanese hostels read this article by clicking here.
Problems of capsule hotels
Not everything is wonderful, the cheap usually has its problems: The capsules have a limited size. Very tall people can literally not fit inside the capsule. The time of stay at the hotel is limited.
Sleepers on duty may find it difficult to adapt to the hotel's 9-hour philosophy. Fortunately, some capsule hotels allow several nights, but you will probably have to check out before 11 am.
Capsules are not a good proposition for family travelers. Couples are separated and children are not accepted at the hotel. There are hotels that prohibit women from entering, they have correct reasons, but they do not provide an option for women.
There are also exclusive hotels for women, but some offer capsules on a mixed floor, allowing you to be close to your girlfriend or wife, and maybe even sharing a capsule at night (you'll have to pay for two).
curiosities ABOUT capsule hotels
- The first capsule Hotel was opened in 1979 in Osaka;
- They say that the idea to create a capsule Hotel came from a sauna in Osaka;
- The collective baths are what discourages some tourists;
- In addition to the capsule hotels, there is something similar called "Hotel cabin";
- In 2009 a capsule hotel was opened in Warsaw, Poland;
- In 2011 a capsule hotel was opened in Shanghai China, but it was closed;
- Some Capsule Hotels are made up of 700 or more capsules;
- One of these hotels offers 4,000 books and manga for reading;
- It is possible to find vending machines inside the Hotel, and have your meal and have a few;
Capsule hotels are easy to find on hotel search sites like Booking and AirBNB.
Videos on Capsule Hotels
To go deeper into the capsule hotels I will end by leaving a video in English talking about these hotels: