HOSPITALITYDESIGN: At K5, Swedish Minimalism Meets Japanese Heritage


Will Speros •
February 14, 2020


Photography courtesy of K5

Conceived as a microcosm within Tokyo, the new K5 hotel pushes the envelope by offering a unique “micro-complex” of guestrooms, restaurants, bars, and social spaces all joined by the Japanese concept of aimai—or the notion of erasing borders.

Designed by Stockholm-based Claesson Koivisto Rune, the hotel is an intersection of Swedish minimalism and Japanese heritage. The firm took cues from the building’s original features and incorporated traditional accents, such as cedar and Japanese stucco, into the new design to further tether the concept to the site’s 100-year-old history.

In the public areas, décor highlights include colored, patterned glass windows installed in the near of the hotel that create a kaleidoscopic effect in the corridors. Open, airy spaces with high ceilings are punctuated with custom furnishings and lighting.

The basement level is home to B, Brooklyn Brewery’s first tap room outside of New York, while the mixology concept Ao occupies the ground floor. Caveman—an offshoot of the popular Tokyo restaurant Kabi—serves as the hotel’s main social hub, kitted out with wooden parquet floors, long communal tables, and raw concrete walls. Rounding out the onsite F&B options is Switch Coffee, a casual specialty coffee shop in the lobby.

Each of K5’s 20 rooms are equipped with integrated shelving, writing desks, and custom beds. The largest accommodation—the 861-square-foot K5 loft—includes a leather recliner, large sofa, and a six-person dining table.

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