Roppongi (六本木) is first and foremost Tokyo’s nightlife mecca. From members only bars and private lounges to burlesque and the crowded dance floors of the nightclubs, whatever your tastes, Roppongi will see you through until the morning. The preferred clubs and bars of the expat crowd are well-known and in some establishments Japanese can be in the minority. Other places—typically those away from the main street—cater for a more domestic clientele.

Tokyo Midtown during in late March

But Roppongi is not all about music and drinking. Development projects over the past two decades have helped the area reinvent itself as a modern, cultural district: the National Art CenterMori Art Museum, and the Suntory Museum of Art are all within a 10-minute walk of the main intersection, and the landmark complexes Roppongi Hills and Tokyo Midtown offer shopping, cinemas, observation decks, and countless high-end restaurants and bars.

History of Roppongi

Roppongi owes its development as Tokyo’s night playground to the military: first the Japanese Imperial Army and then later, with the post-war occupation, the U.S. military, which used the barracks in the area to base servicemen. With the end of the Korean War in 1953 there was less need for such a heavy U.S. military presence, and American servicemen began to return home (or were relocated elsewhere). But the Western bars remained and a generation of young Japanese who had grown up in the shadow of the war were drawn to their liberating hedonism—Roppongi became one of the capital’s most well-known entertainment districts.

The economic boom of the 1980s helped cement Roppongi’s reputation as Tokyo’s party town; although it also tarnished it with a reputation as a sleazy nightspot where Japanese girls went to meet foreigners, and vice versa. Since the 2000s, however, it has (to some extent) shaken off this side of its image and is today known as one of Tokyo’s more sophisticated areas.

Information
Location
Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo
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Key Attractions

21_21 DESIGN SIGHT

Art and design space/venue created by architect Tadao Ando and fashion designer Issey Miyake.
10:00-19:00 (last admission is at 18:30). The museum is closed on Tuesdays and during exhibition changes.
Adults ¥1,100 with discounts for students

Mori Art Museum

Located on the 53rd floor of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, the Mori Art Museum showcases anything from contemporary art to photographic documentaries and research projects. There are no permanent exhibitions.
10:00-22:00 (until 17:00 on Tuesdays)
Adults ¥1,800. Discounts available for students and children and advance purchases. The ticket price includes admission to the Tokyo City View observation deck located in the same building.

National Art Center

The National Art Center has no permanent exhibitions; instead its 14,000 square meters of floor space are used for temporary exhibitions ranging from paintings and photography to works by clothing designers.
10:00-18:00 (until 20:00 on Fridays). Closed on Tuesdays.
Prices depend on the exhibition

Roppongi Hills

Roppongi Hills is one of the most famous commercial complexes in Tokyo. It opened in 2003 to much fanfare and is today the centrepiece of the wider Roppongi re-development housing shops, restaurants, a cinema, the Grand Hyatt Tokyo, Mori Art Museum, and the Tokyo City View observation deck.
Shops 11:00-21:00 / Restaurants 11:00-23:00

Suntory Museum of Art

Art museum exhibiting works based on “Lifestyle Art”.
10:00-18:00 (until 20:00 on Fridays and Saturdays)
Prices vary depending on the exhibition. Participation in the tea ceremony is ¥1,000 (50 person limit)

Tokyo City View Observation Deck

Observation deck on the 52nd floor of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower. It also has a “Skydeck” (outside, rooftop observation deck) offering 360° views of the city.
10:00-23:00 (25:00 on Fridays and Saturdays, and the day before a national holiday). The Skydeck is open 11:00-20:00
Adults ¥1,800 with discounts for students and children. Additional ¥500 charge for access to the Skydeck.

Tokyo Midtown

Opened in 2007, the Tokyo Midtown complex contains offices, shops, restaurants, as well as the Suntory Museum of Art.
Shops 11:00-21:00 / Restaurants 11:00-24:00
Events & Festivals in the Area

Tokyo International Art Fair

Early Oct 2021
The Tokyo International Art Fair features paintings, sculptures, photography art, illustration and multi media artworks by award-winning and…

Tokyo International Film Festival

Late Oct 〜 Early Nov 2021
10-day film festival to promote new films and up-and-coming directors. Typically there have been about 1,500 entries from…

Roppongi Hills Christmas Market

Late Nov 〜 Late Dec 2021
The Roppongi Hills Christmas Market returns to Oyane Plaza (the roofed area when you walk around the building…

Tokyo Midtown Blossom

Mid Mar 〜 Late Apr 2022
150 cherry blossom trees which are lit up in different colours as the trees come into bloom. Various events…

Roppongi Hills Craft Sake Week

Mid 〜 Late Apr 2022
The artisan sake event returns this year with 100 producers participating over the course of 10 days. There…

Roppongi Art Night

Late May 2022
Art weekend which was first held in 2009. Each year brings with it a different theme (e.g. 2019’s…
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