The Hanezawa Garden

Our first impression when we saw the Hanezawa Garden from the outside was that it was a public park. The fortress-like compound, however, was too contained to invite outsiders to come in. Upon a quick entry to the complex, we realized that this was a private enterprise with nine enjoyments within: the Salon; the Sushi Bar; the Main Dining (serving French Italian Japanese cuisine); the Bar; the Cigar Room; the Garden Room; the Oriental Room; the Hanezawa Second; and the Terrace Restaurant (serving BBQ in the summer, from April until October, and shabu-shabu in the winter; all outdoors). The Garden Room, the Oriental Room and the Hanezawa Second are used more for private gatherings, available for rent at a cost.

In the Spring, when the weather was excellent, a lot of weddings took place here. Almost every weekend we could hear music coming out from the compound. Other than that, any other noise is provided by the weekend revelers who probably occupy the BBQ place, which is located outdoors.

Lunch at the French (French and Italian Japanese) restaurant is an excellent experience. Usually, during the weekdays, the place is teeming with ladies who lunch. I usually end up being the only man with a book in the dining room. Once when I came in, the room fell silent, the other ones probably wondering why I had strayed in there; but at another time, I saw a table of four senior men, enjoying themselves.

This Dining Room overseas a garden, which provided a nice vista during one’s meal. During the day and in the summer, the beautifully manicured lawn are surrounded by lush vegetation. At night, the dining room is transformed into a cozy restaurant, with extremely dimmed ceiling light and lots of candles. The music they play tend to be contemporary pop and soft rock. Even sitting at the bar room next door, overlooking yet another side of the garden, was quite an experience in itself, especially during the twilights. The food never disappointed (more review at the following site: http://bloompyeats.blogspot.com).

For such a posh looking place, it was rather a nice surprise to find that the pricing was extremely inexpensive for Tokyo standards.

[UPDATED NEWS: December 20, 2005]
Sadly, the Hanezawa Garden has recently closed (December 17, 2005) due to aging facility. The architecture has been in existence since 1915. I have decided to keep the restaurant reviews in the Restaurant Review Section for sentimental reasons.

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