Intercontinental Hotel Osaka: The Height of Luxury

Intercontinental Hotel Osaka
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Services & Facilities
  • Clean/Comfort
  • Value
4.8

Summary

A fantastic base to explore Osaka and beyond. Everything you could want is easily at hand in the hotel itself or in the countless number of shops and restaurants below. The different rules and closing hours for the fitness gym, pool, and bath are a little confusing and there is a lack of Japanese dining options on site. However, hotels don’t get any more luxurious or convenient than the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka.

The Intercontinental Hotel Osaka has everything: all of the luxury and amenities you’d expect from an up-to-date, five-star hotel, combined with Japan’s first-class customer service and attention to detail. Add in three restaurants, a bar, a bakery, breathtaking views over Osaka, and a fantastic location with shopping, dining, and entertainment within easy reach, and it’s easy to understand why the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka is ranked the number one hotel in Osaka.

There is always a concern when staying at a hotel chain that you will lose the local experience. However, the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka has plenty of Japanese touches, from the onsen-style bath located in the fitness center to the yukata (a light kimono generally used for sleeping) and slippers laid out for guests in their rooms.

However, the hotel shines brightest with its service: the courteous staff goes out of their way for their guests almost as a matter of course, arranging early check-in without being prompted, accompanying sick guests to the nearby clinic, and sending get well soon cards. It’s true that they have taken Japanese hospitality to new heights.

 

 

Hotel Overview

The Intercontinental Hotel Osaka is mainly located between the 20th and 28th floors of a tower within the Grand Front Osaka shopping complex. It’s a short walk from two major transportation hubs, Osaka Station and Umeda Station (though, really, you will not want to leave the hotel).

With amenities like an indoor swimming pool, an executive lounge on the twenty-eighth floor exclusive to club Intercontinental members, and indulgently-appointed rooms, it is very tempting to stay in and relax.

Although check-in isn’t available until 3:00pm, guests who arrive early have been offered the option of early check-in, with an e-mail letting them know when their room is prepared. Check-out is at 11:00am. The concierge desk is open twenty-four hours, and the staff speaks multiple languages, including English, Mandarin, Dutch, French, German, and Korean.

There is Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, a laundry service, and meeting rooms that can be easily adapted to cater to various group sizes and functions.

Families will feel very comfortable at the Intercontinental hotel. Children who share their parents’ bed sleep free of charge, and child-sized pajamas, bottles for infants, and other amenities are available upon request. There is even a babysitting service if you fancy some time to yourself!

 

Pros vs. Cons

Pros

  • Excellent location
  • Incredible facilities. Swimming pool and Japanese style bath? I’m in
  • Michelin-starred restaurant
  • iPhone dock in rooms
  • Spacious rooms

 

Cons

  • It can be difficult to locate if it’s your first time staying there.
  • 2-hour time limit at the 3-60 lounge.
  • Guests with tattoos can’t use the swimming pool/bath.
  • Children aren’t allowed in the exclusive lounge after 5:30pm
  • Expensive

 

Making Reservations

Be sure to check the prices on websites like Booking.com or Agoda for any specials or possible low rates.

Check prices and availability on Agoda.com

Check prices and availability on Booking.com

 

Location


The area around Osaka and Umeda stations is one of my favorite parts of Osaka, as there is always something happening. There is a fantastic mix of shopping, with international brands sold side by side with Japanese staples, and quirky stores exclusive to Osaka.

While more upmarket than Namba, the area still retains the lively atmosphere and friendliness that is so typically Osakan. I especially enjoy the wide variety of international restaurants. There’s something here for everyone!

Thanks to Osaka’s network of public transport, the Intercontinental Osaka is within easy traveling distance of Osaka’s major attractions.

Dotonbori, a must-see after dark, is roughly twenty minutes away by public transport, or a 13-minute taxi ride. The Kaiyukan Aquarium, one of the best in the world, is 45 minutes by public transport,  or 20 minutes by taxi. Universal Studios Japan is an easy 35-minute journey on the JR network or 25 minutes by taxi.

 

How to Get There

Kansai International Airport Buses

TKKurikawa/Depositphotos.com

Arriving by Air (Kansai International Airport)

Take the Airport Limousine bus for Osaka Station/Umeda. Board the bus at stop 5, Terminal One, or stop 1 at Terminal Two.

Get off at the New Hankyuu Hotel stop. The trip takes approximately an hour between Terminal One and the New Hankyuu bus stop and costs 1,550 yen for an adult, 780 yen for a child.

Tickets are purchased from the vending machines outside the 1st floor of Terminal One and Two.

At the New Hankyuu Hotel stop, get off the bus. This will put you on the covered bus platform.

Walk in the opposite direction that the buses are going, staying on the footpath on the right side of the road. You’ll emerge from the bus station onto the street.

Keep going along the road you’re on. Shortly, you’ll see a raised walkway ahead of you. When you reach the block that this raised walkway is on, turn right.

You’ll find the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka at the end of this road on the left. The walk takes about 7 minutes total.

 

Arriving by Air (Osaka International Airport)

Take the Airport Limousine bus for Osaka Station/Umeda. Board the bus at stop 14 at the South Terminal, or bus stop 4 at the North Terminal.

Get off at the New Hankyuu Hotel Stop. The trip takes approximately 30 minutes and costs 640 yen for an adult, 320 yen for a child. Tickets are purchased from the vending machines on the platform.

At the New Hankyuu Hotel stop, get off the bus. This will put you on the covered bus platform. Follow the instructions given above to walk to the Intercontinental Osaka.

 

By Shinkansen/Bullet Train (from Shin-Osaka Station)

Transfer from the shinkansen platforms to the city platforms, and take the Tokaido line towards Osaka Station (the price of the transfer should be included in your shinkansen ticket). The trip takes approximately 4 minutes.

Get off at Osaka station and head for the Central North Exit. Take the escalator or elevator up to the 2nd floor (you’re now entering the Grand Front Shopping Complex).

Take the sky-bridge (a raised walkway) past Tower A until you reach Tower B. Here, take the escalator or elevator down to the 1st floor, and walk through the Knowledge Plaza.

On your right, you’ll find Tower C, where the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka is located. Take the elevator to the 20th floor to reception.

 

By JR Line (from Osaka Station)

From JR Osaka station, head for the Central North Exit. Take the escalator or elevator up to the 2nd floor (you’re now entering the Grand Front Shopping Complex).

Take the sky-bridge (a raised walkway) past Tower A until you reach Tower B. Here, take the escalator or elevator down to the 1st floor and walk through the Knowledge Plaza.

On your right, you’ll find Tower C, where the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka is located. Take the elevator to the 20th floor to reception.

 

By City Subway (from Umeda Station)

Navigating the underground maze that is the Osaka Station/Umeda Station is difficult, even if you’ve visited Osaka many times. If arriving by subway, I recommend simply following the signs to the JR Osaka Station, and from there, finding the Central North Exit and following the directions above.

 

Rooms


Located between the 21st and 26th floors, the standard guest rooms set new high standards for hotels.

At 50m² on average, they’re generously sized for Japanese hotel rooms and come as doubles, twins, or suites. One extra bed can be added for a 5,000 yen charge (roughly $50 US).

All rooms come with fantastic views and a number of convenient features, including Nespresso machines, a smartphone docking station with BOSE Bluetooth speakers, a walk-in closet, a mini-bar, and a safe deposit box. The bathroom contains a shower and bath and is well-stocked with Agraria brand toiletries.

Club Intercontinental rooms give guests access to the exclusive club lounge, which offers a buffet breakfast, afternoon tea, and evening cocktails.

The residential suites on the 29th to 32nd floors are designed with long-term visitors in mind, and feature one, two, or three-bedroom suites. These come fully equipped with a kitchen, dining facilities, and even a washing machine so you can take care of laundry. With access to the hotel’s facilities included, you get the best of both worlds in the residential suites.

 

Price


The following prices were taken from the official Intercontinental Hotel Osaka website and were correct at the time of this article. They make no allowance for demand or seasonal variation.

  • Standard Room: 34,010 yen
  • Deluxe Twin Room: 37,810 yen
  • Deluxe King Room: 91,960 yen
  • Deluxe King Room with view: 36, 860 yen
  • Club Intercontinental Room: 48,260 yen
  • Club Intercontinental Twin Room: 52,060 yen
  • Club Intercontinental King Room: 51,110 yen
  • Club Intercontinental Corner Suite: 58,710 yen
  • Club Intercontinental Executive Suite: 105,260 yen
  • One bedroom deluxe residence: 45,410 yen
  • Intercontinental residence: 100,510 yen
  • Two-bedroom superior residence: 100,510 yen
  • Two-bedroom deluxe residence: 119,510 yen
  • Two-bedroom premium residence: 176,510 yen
  • Three-bedroom premium residence: 319,010 yen

 

Hotel Facilities

Dining

Dining at the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka is an experience.

 

Pierre:  Michelin-Star French Cuisine

Pierre on the 20th floor is a Michelin-starred restaurant offering contemporary French cuisine in an elegant, modern setting. French and Japanese techniques are combined to craft an unforgettable menu of original dishes. Choose from lunch or dinner courses, or dine a la carte. Lunch is served from 11:00am – 2:00pm and dinner 6:00pm – 9:30pm. A decadent afternoon tea is served on weekends and public holidays. The dress code is smart-casual, and there is a private room available.

 

NOKA Roast and Grill:  Gourmet Food with an Amazing View

Also on the 20th floor is the NOKA Roast and Grill, an exciting open kitchen with a vibrant atmosphere. The emphasis is on fresh, high-quality ingredients prepared as you watch. NOKA offers all-day dining and serves a breakfast buffet from 6:30am – 10:30am. Lunch is 11:30am – 2:30pm and dinner is 6:00pm – 9:30pm . Like Pierre, there is one private room available.

 

Adee:  A Stylish Bar with Entertainment

Adee is the hotel bar, serving original cocktails under glittering chandeliers that reflect the Osakan nightscape, visible outside. With an in-house DJ, it offers entertainment, as well as relaxation. Open 4:00pm – midnight Monday – Thursday and 11:30am – midnight at on Friday – Sunday and public holidays.

 

STRESSED:  Beautiful Pastries and Baked Goods

STRESSED is located at the ground floor entrance to the hotel, and is a patisserie offering hotel-made cakes, chocolates, pastries, and drinks. The sleek, modern decor makes this a great place to meet friends for coffee ahead of a morning’s shopping spree.  They open from 10:00am – 8:30pm.

 

3-60 Lounge:  A Cozy Atmosphere to Enjoy Your Time

The 3-60 Lounge, located next to the reception area on the 20th floor, offers light meals and drinks, as well as beautiful views of Osaka. Make time for their incredible afternoon tea sets.  Their hours are 8:00am – 10:00pm.

 

Fitness Center

The fitness center on the 4th floor is open 24-hours for all guests to use. In addition to the indoor swimming pool and Japanese-style baths, further spa treatments are available at All That Spa Osaka.

The fitness center has cardio machines, weights, and a wide range of exercise equipment (children aged under sixteen not permitted, even if accompanied by an adult). If you forget your training clothes, you can borrow some for free.

*Note: Children aged 16 and under may use the swimming pool with an adult, but they can only use the Japanese bath between 9:00am – 5:00pm.

 

Access for Guests with Disabilities

Not only does the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka have elevator access throughout, but they also have wheelchair-accessible rooms. Ask about them when making your reservation.

 

Insider’s Tips

Err on the side of caution and make reservations at the hotel restaurant and bar if you have your heart set on dining in. If you dine elsewhere, ask the concierge staff to help you with recommendations and reservations.

 

Making a Reservation

Check prices and availability on Agoda.com

Check prices and availability on Booking.com

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