Tokyo City Guide: 25 Iconic Buildings to Visit in Japan's Capital City

Tokyo City Guide: 25 Iconic Buildings to Visit in Japan's Capital City

Similar to Berlin, Tokyo’s architecture is overwhelming modern due to its destruction during the 20th Century. Its minimalistic yet experimental architecture has drawn the world's attention, attracting a considerable number of tourists to the Japanese capital every year. New technologies and old traditions are assembled together to build this city, providing it with uniqueness in its architecture and design along with the richness from the way they build with concrete, wood, and glass.

The following list showcases 25 iconic and contemporary buildings that will provide a good starting point for your first visit to Japan's largest city, including works from renowned architects such as Nikken Sekkei, Herzog & De Meuron, Toyo Ito, Kengo Kuma, Sou Fujimoto, Kenzo Tange, OMA and Kazuyo Sejima.

Ginza Neighborhood

Tokyu Plaza Ginza / Nikken Sekkei

© Koji Fujii / Nacasa & Partners Inc.
© Koji Fujii / Nacasa & Partners Inc.

Yamaha Ginza / Nikken Sekkei

© Kenichi Suzuki Photography Studio
© Kenichi Suzuki Photography Studio

Louis Vuitton Matsuya Ginza Facade Renewal / Jun Aoki & Associates

© Daici Ano
© Daici Ano

De Beers Ginza Building / Jun Mitsui & Associates Architects

© Naoomi Kurozumi
© Naoomi Kurozumi

Shizuoka Press and Broadcasting Center / Kenzo Tange

Courtesy of Petr Šmídek
Courtesy of Petr Šmídek

Nakagin Capsule Tower / Kisho Kurokawa

© Arcspace
© Arcspace

Tokyo International Forum / Rafael Viñoly Architects

© Fernanda Castro
© Fernanda Castro

Omotesando Neighborhood

Miu Miu Aoyama Store / Herzog & de Meuron

© Nacasa & Partners
© Nacasa & Partners

Omotesando Keyaki Building / Norihiko Dan and Associates

© Kozo Takayama
© Kozo Takayama

Coach Omotesando Flagship / OMA

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Shibuya Neighborhood

Yoyogi National Gymnasium / Kenzo Tange

Courtesy of Flickr CC License / Jamie Barras.
Courtesy of Flickr CC License / Jamie Barras.

Sunwell Muse Kitasando / Takato Tamagami and Tsutomu Hase

© Masaya Yoshimura
© Masaya Yoshimura

Shinjuku Neighborhood

Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower / Kenzo Tange

© Koji Horiuchi
© Koji Horiuchi

Aoyama

Spiral Building / Fumihiko Maki

Wiiii [Wikipedia] licensed by CC BY-SA 3.0
Wiiii [Wikipedia] licensed by CC BY-SA 3.0

Asakusa Neighborhood

Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates

© Takeshi Yamagishi
© Takeshi Yamagishi

Koenji Neighborhood

House NA / Sou Fujimoto Architects

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Setagaya Neighborhood

Breeze / ARTechnic Architects

© Nacasa & Partners
© Nacasa & Partners

Suginami Neighborhood

Za Koenji Public Theatre / Toyo Ito

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Shibaura Neighborhood

Shibaura House by Kazuyo Sejima

Shibaura House. Image vía Flickr User: Park Licensed Under CC BY 2.0
Shibaura House. Image vía Flickr User: Park Licensed Under CC BY 2.0

Sumida Neighborhood

Asahi Beer Hall / Philippe Starck

Courtesy of <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/'>Wikimedia</a> Commons Wiiii
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons Wiiii

Sekiguchi Neighborhood

St. Mary Cathedral / Kenzo Tange

© Scarletgreen
© Scarletgreen

Oshiage  Neighborhood

One @ Tokyo / Kengo Kuma & Associates

© Keishin Horikoshi / SS Tokyo
© Keishin Horikoshi / SS Tokyo

Kodaira Neighborhood

Musashino Art University Museum & Library / Sou Fujimoto

© Daici Ano
© Daici Ano

Hachioji Neighborhood

Tama Art University Library / Toyo Ito by Iwan Baan

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Harumi Neighborhood

Harumi Residential Tower / Richard Meier & Partners Architects

© Ishiguro Photographic Institute
© Ishiguro Photographic Institute

Bullet List:

  • Tokyu Plaza Ginza / Nikken Sekkei
  • Yamaha Ginza / Nikken Sekkei
  • Louis Vuitton Matsuya Ginza Facade Renewal / Jun Aoki & A...
  • De Beers Ginza Building / Jun Mitsui & Associates Architects
  • Shizuoka Press and Broadcasting Center / Ken...
  • Nakagin Capsule Tower / Kisho Kurokawa
  • Tokyo International Forum / Rafael Viñoly Architects
  • Miu Miu Aoyama Store / Herzog & de Meuron
  • Omotesando Keyaki Building / Norihiko Dan and Associates
  • Coach Omotesando Flagship / OMA
  • Yoyogi National Gymnasium / Kenzo Tange
  • Sunwell Muse Kitasando / Takato Tamagami and Tsutomu Hase
  • Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower / Tange Associates
  • Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building / Kenzo Tange
  • Do-C Ebisu / Schemata Architects
  • Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates
  • Breeze / ARTechnic Architects
  • Za Koenji Public Theatre / Toyo Ito
  • Shibaura House by Kazuyo Sejima
  • St. Mary Cathedral / Kenzo Tange
  • One @ Tokyo / Kengo Kuma & Associates
  • Musashino Art University Museum & Library / Sou Fujimoto
  • Tama Art University Library / Toyo Ito by Iwan Baan
  • Harumi Residential Tower / Richard Meier & Partners Architects
  • House NA / Sou Fujimoto Architects

You can visit our list of City Guides here.

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About this author
Cite: AD Editorial Team. "Tokyo City Guide: 25 Iconic Buildings to Visit in Japan's Capital City" 01 Mar 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/168654/168654/> ISSN 0719-8884
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