Living in Shinagawa: What is it Like For Foreigners?
Shinagawa Ward is located inside central Tokyo (Tokyo 23-ku), just a few stations away from Tokyo Station. The area surrounding Shinagawa Station is popular for being a business area, while the west is a high-class residential area.
In addition, various redevelopment projects are currently in process in Shinagawa, gaining a lot of interest from locals and foreigners alike.
Read further to learn more about Shinagawa.
Shinagawa: Tokyo’s lively business district
Shinagawa Station is a highly convenient area connected to various train lines including, among others, the Yamanote Line, Keihin-Tohoku Line, and the Tokaido Shinkansen. Because of this, the area has become a business district. In fact, it was formerly the home to the headquarters of Sony.
However, Shinagawa is also attractive as a residential area. There is an abundance of activities available, such as a food theme park, an aquarium, temples, museums and Tennozu Isle.
Whether you are coming to Tokyo as a businessperson, a tourist or a student, Shinagawa is an ideal place to quench your thirst for adventure.
- From Tokyo Station, take the Yamanote Line or JR Keihin-Tohoku Line to Shinagawa Station (10 minutes)
- From Shibuya Station, take the Yamanote Line to Shinagawa (8 minutes)
- From Shinjuku Station, take the Yamanote Line to Shinagawa Station (18 minutes)
Former Tokaido Road
Urbanization may have taken away the ancient landmarks of the old Edo, but on the former Tokaido road, you will see everything that it couldn’t take away.
The street is an ideal place to stroll with your partner. There are a variety of bars, cafés, restaurants, traditional shops and affordable guest houses. Furthermore, you can visit the temples and shrines that still remain in the area.
With all the modern buildings that now are located in Shinagawa, the former Tokaido road provides a much needed tranquility to the area.
Hara Museum of Contemporary Art
Nearby the former Tokaido road is the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art. What was once a private mansion has transformed into a place of culture. It is home to around 1000 artworks from famous artists such as Yayoi Kusama.
There is also a garden for you to relax after going around the building, and a cafe that offers cakes related to the artworks.
- Address: 4-7-25 Kitashinagawa, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo
The Shinagawa Shrine dates back to the 12th century, a shrine that is nestled on a small hill. You are welcomed by a massive torii gate. Inside the shrine, there is a replica of Mount Fuji; Fujizuka.
Stories had it that Ieyasu Tokugawa prayed at this spot before winning the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600. The battle secured the clan of Tokugawa's hegemony for the next 200 years.
There is an annual Shinagawa Shukuba Festival that sees a portable shrine parade around the town. The shrine attracts foreigners to witness different parades in late September.
- Address: 3-7-15 Kitashinagawa, Shinagawa, Tokyo
Shinagawa Kumin Park
There is plenty to do in the Shinagawa Kumin Park. The massive park offers a great kid’s playground, an outdoor swimming pool, tennis courts, baseball practice fields, jogging and bicycle lanes, an aquarium, and BBQ area. Also, there are over 100 species of flowers and trees. For nature lovers, this is a must-go destination.
- Address: 3-2-2 Katsushima, Shinagawa, Tokyo
- Location: A 5-minute walk from Omori Kaigan Station on the Keikyu Main line which leaves from Shinagawa Station
Why foreigners live in Shinagawa
Living in Shinagawa offers you direct access to various areas all over Japan.
The station connects with major lines such as the Yamanote Line, Tokaido Main Line, and the Tokaido Shinkansen. You will be able to reach souther prefectures of Japan, such as Osaka and Kyoto, within hours.
High-class Residential Area
Located nearby Shinagawa Station is Gotenyama, a high-class residential area. What used to be the land of Sony’s headquarters is now “Prime Maison Gotenyama,” a luxurious condominium complex, and “Garden City Shinagawa Gotenyama,” a large commercial facility.
Another high-class residential area, “Shimazuyama,” is also within Shinagawa Ward. It is home to Seisen University, filled with beautiful architecture that contributes to the luxurious, European-like atmosphere of the area.
Additionally, just minutes from Shinagawa Station are high-rise condominium complexes
One exciting redevelopment that is on its way is the construction of a new station in Shinagawa, namely the Shinagawa-Shin Station. This will reduce the number of Shinagawa Station users, which, with all the train lines mentioned above, can be a huge crowd.
The new station is set to be finished by the 2020 Olympics.
Furthermore, the highly anticipated Chuo Shinkansen, which will connect Shinagawa to areas such as Nagoya Prefecture, is under construction. This will provide even more transportation options to the already highly accessible Shinagawa.
Construction is aimed to be finished by 2027.
Although Shinagawa is known as a business area, it is also ideal as a place to live. With so many options for dining, traveling, and other activities, it is arguably one of the most convenient places to live in Japan.
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