Why Azabu Juban is the Best Place to Live in Tokyo
Why You Need to Move to Azabu Juban
If you are searching for a district that is a home away from home in Tokyo, then Azabu Juban is a perfect choice. The cosmopolitan area simultaneously offers a traditional feel, unique quirks of Tokyo life and creature comforts from the homelands of expats. Here are three reasons why you need to check it out.
"Azabujuban station exit 4" by Syced is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Azabu Juban is easily accessible via the Toei Oedo subway line and Tokyo Metro Namboku line. It is a short ride to major hubs of Tokyo, taking 12 minutes to Shinjuku station and around 15 minutes to Shibuya station.
The area has an international feel, as it is home to many international businesses, schools, universities and foreign embassies. Expats are attracted by its prestigious reputation and its proximity to both work and play.
The Azabu Juban lifestyle is quiet and relaxed; however, this does not mean you will miss out on being close to the hustle and bustle of big city life. It’s trendy neighbor, Roppongi, is just one subway stop from Azabu Juban station. This area is well-known as a hub of thriving nightlife and for the high-end Roppongi Hills development precinct.
Azabu Juban offers expats the best of both worlds when it comes to food.
There will be plenty of cafes, restaurants, and bars at your doorstep. According to the 2020 Michelin Guide, Tokyo is home to the most Michelin starred restaurants in the world and many of these can be found in Azabu Juban. Ranging from delicious one-star cheap eats to three-star fine dining experiences, food lovers will be spoiled for choice.
There are also many international food offerings and shops selling a broad range of imported goods for when you crave a taste of home. Nissin World Delicatessen is a popular international supermarket in Azabu Juban, located just minutes from the Azabu Juban station.
You will find plenty of sweet treats in the area to satisfy your sweet tooth. Japan is famous for its unique baked goods and it will be hard to resist trying them out when the area is filled with great bakeries.
Naniwaya Sōhonten is one of the most famous in Azabu Juban. They have been serving freshly made Taiyoki since 1909. The crispy treats are shaped like a fish and stuffed with sweet bean paste. It takes eight hours for the sweet bean paste to cook; however, it will not take long for you to devour the dessert!
"Azabu Juban matsuri" by Jacob Ehnmark is licensed under CC BY 2.0
For over 300 years, the main street of Azabu Juban has been the heart of the area. As you stroll down the street, you will see longstanding traditional shops and food vendors sitting alongside more modern retailers.
Despite the cosmopolitan vibe of Azabu Juban, there are still many opportunities to immerse yourself in traditional culture.
Onsen is on the bucket list of many foreign expats in Japan. Soaking in a steaming geothermal hot spring after a long week of work is sure to relax both your body and soul. If you want to experience onsen like a local, you should visit the Take-no-yu onsen in Azabu Juban. Here you will find black waters that are colored by volcanic ash and peat. It may seem a little strange, but do not let it put you off! It is known as ‘black beauty water’ that will leave your skin feeling cleansed and purified. Onsen is a Japanese tradition steeped in etiquette, so it will be important to educate yourself before you visit to avoid causing any offense.
Each year in late August, Azabu Juban comes alive because of the Azabu Juban Noryo Matsuri. For over 40 years, the famous two-day festival has attracted enormous crowds of people to the area. You can explore market stalls, savor traditional food from local vendors, check out performances and parades, and soak up the summer festival atmosphere.
Home Away From Home
Living in Tokyo offers an imitable experience, and its distinctive culture, cityscape, and spirit continues to lure expats from around the globe. If you decide to make Azabu Juban your home, it will be your quiet sanctuary amidst life in the ever-buzzing metropolis of old and new.
Sources: Real Estate Japan, Michelin Guide, Timeout, Japan Times, TokyoCheapo, Minato City Official Website
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