Hot New Hotels: W Osaka

The W brand’s latest Asian outpost occupies a jet-black high-rise in the heart of Japan’s second city.

Lounge seating at Living Room, W Osaka’s third-floor lobby. (All photos courtesy of W Osaka)

Fans of Marriott International’s cheeky W Hotels planning a future trip to Japan now have even more reason to visit Osaka. Rising 27 stories above the gingko tree–lined Midosuji Boulevard, W Osaka opened its doors today as the luxury brand’s first-ever outpost in the country. The monolithic black facade by celebrated Osaka-born architect Tadao Ando presents a minimalist veneer that conceals flamboyant interiors by Amsterdam-based design studio Concrete, which was previously behind W London and W Verbier.

Guests at W Osaka enter the property via an illuminated tunnel inspired by origami and kirigami (Japanese paper cutting), with scenes of nature and the seasons projected on its walls. The vivid colors and playful interpretation of wooden kawaii kokeshi dolls inside Living Room, the hotel’s third-floor lobby, set the scene for intimate events such as standup comedy performances and DJ sessions.

The minimalistic facade of W Osaka was designed by star architect Tadao Ando.

Upstairs, the 337 guest rooms and suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows, bathrooms with rain showers and luxe amenities, plus a “pixorama” of Osaka — a graphic by pixel art group eBoy that showcases the city’s famous landmarks — hidden behind closet doors. Color schemes and neon-light accents in pink and blue on alternate floors allude to cherry blossoms and Osaka’s seaside.

Perched on the 27th floor, the Extreme WOW Penthouse suite is a 200-square-meter sanctuary with exceptionally high ceilings (5.4 meters, to be exact) and a Zen-inspired garden; the bedroom is adorned with pieces by Dutch textile artist Sigrid Calon. The suite also features an open kitchen, a 1.9-meter-diameter chrome tub in the bathroom, and, not surprisingly for the W brand, a built-in DJ booth.

Visiting gourmands have four restaurants and two bars to choose from. Bistro Oh.Lala is a collaboration with Yusuke Takada, chef-owner of the two-Michelin-starred Osaka venue La Cime, while Teppanyaki Mydo serves new interpretations of local comfort food, alongside cuts of Kuroge and Akaushi wagyu beef, in a beautiful space created by Japanese celebrity interior designer Yasumichi Morita and Osaka-born artist Seitaro Kuroda. Omakase restaurant Sushi Ukiyo nods to the historical art genre ukiyo-e (“floating world”), using it as a metaphor for Osaka’s nature as a city of waterways. Street-side café Mixup specializes in pastries, tea and coffee, and cocktails, and Living Room offers drinks as well as W Osaka’s own private-label champagne. On the fourth floor, mixologists at the poolside Wet Bar also shake up creative cocktails.

On-site recreational facilities include a gym and yoga room, an indoor pool featuring an LED ceiling, and the Away Spa with five treatment rooms. Those looking to hold events and meetings can book up to four dedicated spaces, including a 390-square-meter ballroom with oak pillars and champagne-gold metallic details.

More information here.

The entrance to W Osaka.

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