The very first story of Tokyo Station: Starting point of Japan’s railway network
Tokyo Station opened in 1914. Marunouchi station building is in Marunouchi area, which is now a major business area of Tokyo, though it has been an open field then. This area was selected to be the place of the Tokyo Station as it is right in front of the Imperial Palace. A straight wide road connects the Imperial Palace to the entrance of the station. The station building has been regarded not just as a transportation facility but as an important symbolic national architecture. Thus, Tokyo Station is the starting point of Japan’s railway network as well as the symbol of Tokyo metropolitan city representing Japan’s modernization.
Tokyo Station (Marunouchi station building) was designed by Kingo Tatsuno, the authority of Japanese architects at that time who also has designed famous buildings like the headquarter office of Bank of Japan. Marunouchi station building consisting of several constructions combined side by side was in European Renaissance design. It was a three-storied magnificent Renaissance architecture with 3 large domes in the north, south and center.
World War II and Restoration
During World War II, Tokyo Station was severely damaged by the fierce air raids. The roofs have burned down leaving the base structure, and most of the interior decoration has been lost.
After the War, Marunouchi station building was somehow restored and started operation, though the original outlook was lost. After more than 60 years then, on October 1, 2012, the third floor and the domes that have been burned down were renovated using the bricks and reliefs of the same specification and design as the original, and the grand opening ceremony was held in the original construction. It has a European outlook with oriental designs like reliefs of Zodiac animal symbols. Tokyo Station, which had been the symbol of Tokyo 100 years ago, now came back to be the symbol of modern Tokyo. Appreciate the magnificent classic architecture and feel the history of Tokyo Station that has survived the hard times.
Tokyo Station photos
Enjoy the “Ekinaka” commercial facilities of Tokyo Station
There are many commercial facilities inside Tokyo Station such as “ecute Tokyo” near Marunouchi South Exit, “Central Street” through the both sides of the central passage, and “GRANSTA” on the first basement floor. “Ekinaka” (a Japanese word meaning commercial facilities inside a railway station) in Tokyo Station is one of the largest commercial facilities in railway stations in Japan.
Nationally famous shops are open in Tokyo Station, serving confectionaries with well-selected materials, souvenirs, delicious boxed lunches and more. Because the Tokyo Station facilities are as if “Depachika” (the basement floor of Japanese department stores), having a large variety of foods, it’s fun just walking along for window shopping. Exclusive goods of Tokyo Station are also featured. Products like “Tokyo Brick Bread, breads in the shape of Marunouchi station building, and “Tokyo Terminal Cookies,” cookies in the shape of trains, are so popular that many tourists rush to buy them. It’s highly recommended to choose souvenirs from the wide variety of goods on sale at Tokyo station. There are also restaurants, so you can spend a day looking around the station building as well as its commercial facilities!
New “Travel Service Center” is open for foreign visitors!
With the renovation of Marunouchi station building, the Travel Service Center is open at Marunouchi North Exit, serving travel information, parcels delivery service, baggage room (left luggage service), currency exchange, and issuing JR passes. PC with Internet service is there for your use. Take full advantage of the Center to get your travel in Japan started! Business hour: 7：30 – 20：30 Languages: English, Chinese, Korean
Enjoy an elegant time in Tokyo Station
A traditional hotel is within the busy Tokyo Station building. “The Tokyo Station Hotel” was established in 1915. The hotel building is inside the Marunouchi station building and has beautiful classic atmosphere.
The three-storied “Tokyo Station Gallery” has also been refurbished and opened together with the grand opening of Marunouchi station building. You can appreciate fine arts in peace. This art museum with brick walls has exhibitions regardless of the genres. The opening memorial exhibition is now on until February 24, 2013, titled “Waiting for the First Train: Modern arts of Tokyo Station and Railways; Nine stories”.