Japan Architecture Tours Blog

Unique Japan Tours in Architecture, Art, Design and Culture by Robert Day Travel

Weird Buildings in Tokyo – Japan Architecture Tours

Hurry! Bookings close soon for the UIA Japan Architecture Tour, 25 Sep – 8 Oct. Book now for the best value Japan Architecture Tour.

Choose between the full 14 day tour (UIA Congress + post-UIA tour) or just the 9 day post-UIA tour.

The 14 day tour incorporates the UIA 2011 TOKYO World Congress of Architecture, followed by the fully guided Japan Architecture Tour at the conclusion of the Congress. The 9 day fully guided Japan Architecture Tour commences at the conclusion of the UIA 2011 TOKYO Congress.

To book your place on the tour or to find out more details, contact Robert on robert@rdayarch.com.au or leave a comment for Robert in the Comments box above.

The Japan Architecture Tours offer the opportunity to see first hand some of great examples of Japanese architecture. These may be contemporary beauties, modern icons or old classics.

There is also the opportunity to see some very strange and very weird buildings. One of my favourites is the Asahi Beer Building by Philippe Starck. Designed at the height of the bubble economy on the 1980’s it is a building that still amazes tourists when they first see it. The exterior is only part of the strangeness that makes this building so interesting. The golden flame on the top puzzles many people for it is not entirely evident to most that it is a flame. The interior has the typical Starck quirkiness. Even the toilets are strange. They were described by the waitress as “interesting and mysterious” Of course we all then had to check them out.

Another very strange building is the Aoyama Technical College. Designed by Makoto Sei Watanabe, this Transfomer-like building is truly amazing sight to see.

Again conceived in the Japan’s bubble era, it still continues to fascinate architects and lay people alike. It seems to sit crouching amongst the bland architectural landscape of this part of Tokyo, ready to pounce on an unsuspecting victim. It is certainly on of the highlights of the Tokyo leg of the Japan Architecture Tours.

The bubble era of the 1980’s created some interesting and unusual buildings in Japan. During this time, a number of famous Japanese Architects were commissioned to design “Koban” or Police Boxes. In the theme of strange buildings, we have the Ueno Park koban, by Tetsuro Kurokawa, which looks like a space ship and a koban in Shibuya, by Edward Suzuki,  that looks a bit like an axe.

The Japan Architecture Tours offers a great opportunity to see such a wide and varied examples of Japanese Architecture.

2 comments on “Weird Buildings in Tokyo – Japan Architecture Tours

  1. Narvis McAllen
    March 7, 2011


    I would like to know the address of the Mineral House in Nakano district; how can I get there from Nakano Station? I would like to produce a show about unusual architecture in Tokyo and host it from there.

    Compliments of the season,
    Narvis McAllen

    • Japan Architecture Tours
      March 7, 2011

      Hi Narvis,

      I have not been able to find the Mineral House. We have tried but we were unable to find any distinguishable landmarks that might point to it’s location. If I do, I will let you know. Do you need help with any others?

      Regards, Robert

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