Tokyo hotel targets geeks with Gundam rooms

Tokyo hotel targets geeks with Gundam rooms

Giant robot enthusiasts encouraged to spend a night with their classic anime hero
“Would you like that wake-up call with or without flaming carnage, sir?”

Both anime and robot fans are in for a treat next time they’re in Tokyo -- a bayside hotel in the city has opened the world’s first guest rooms themed around the Gundam line of giant robot mechanoids.

And no, we didn’t dream this up after heavy night on the sake and shochu.

Hotel Grand Pacific Le Daiba in the capital’s waterfront entertainment district has just begun taking reservations for three Gundam rooms, two of which can be combined into a suite for the wealthier otaku.

The rooms, opened June 29, are decorated with a range of images from the 33-year-old animated TV show, have bed linen emblazoned with all manner of Gundam arcanery and even carpets and wallpaper in the appropriate colors.

Squeeze ‘em ‘til it hurts

Fans opting for the suite can expect to spend from ¥26,000 (US$327) each per night if two people are staying, or ¥25,000 a head if three’s (super-nerdy) company.

Normal, unadulterated rooms at the Grand Pacific start at ¥17,000 per night.

The deliberate price premium reflects the hotel’s aim of attracting guests who grew up watching Gundam.

The characters -- there are dozens of variants, including our favorite, Super Deformed Gundam --  were born in 1979 and grew into a Lucas-like industry spanning movies, video games, lunch boxes and plenty more merchandise.

Nostalgia factor

A hotel spokesperson explained the higher price and the need for the suite room.

“We're targeting older fans, who are mostly parents now, and want them to use the rooms for family trips.”

As for the location, the Grand Pacific is a mere laser blast away from the nearby Gundam Front Tokyo facility, a shrine/expo dedicated to everyone’s favorite giant-robot-with-human-driver character.

Since the hotel’s shiny new décor likely came from the cabinets of Gundam Front anyway, it’s heartening to see the two businesses haven’t gone overboard on the money-grubbing and have included free tickets to the expo with the cost of a room.

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