Client reviews 2014
My wife and myself had only a few days in Tokyo and booked a guided tour with Mr. Takaki on a Sunday afternoon.
Unbelievable but the program fitted into an afternoon to have all the importet spots in Tokio visited. We used the metro and got familiar with it to use it afterwards on our own. We have checked the most interesting places, some hidden shrines, some shopping areas, the tower of tokio, the palace and his garden. Mr. Takaki was able to show us the highlights so we could manage the remaining two days easily on our own. It was really worth it to have this first overview about Japan and Tokyo. I would do it again like this. Many thanks to Mr. Takaki.
Oct. 2014/ Thomas & Maria
Husband and wife/ Switzerland
We were introduced to Takaki-San from my colleague and engaged him for our trip to Japan in Early August 2014. Takaki-San is a great tour guide who introduced us to many new places and tailored the trip according to what he could tell we liked. We were also introduced to many great authentic restaurants and places for shopping and sightseeing, that we would have never discovered if we were on our own. He is extremely knowledgeable about the area and was able to tell us very much about the places we visited, especially the their history (Not just in historical places, but also in modern areas). He also was able to communicate with us clearly and was very fun to tour around Tokyo with. He is also extremely polite and patient, as he is willing to bring us to many places even those that are outside his comfort zone, such as the Maid Cafes in Akihabara. We were happy to start off the day touring around Tokyo with him! It was an unforgettable experience with my Son and I and I would definitely recommend Takaki-san to anyone looking for a guide in Japan.
August.2014/ Ann and Zachary Loke
Mother and Son / Singapore
Masahisa was our guide for 2 days we found his services on the internet and I liked his web page.
First Masahisa showed us around Tokyo, showing us the fish markets, the young fashion district, emperors palace, Tokyo business district, Ginza , Tokyo tower, Harajuku, Omotesando, Asakusa, we really enjoyed it because we got to understand how the subway works and he saved us a lot of time via his knowledge.
On the 2nd day we took a train to Kamakura and we visited many shrines and temples and the great Buddha it was really nice as it got us out of the fast pace of Tokyo. We then headed back to Ginza for a great sushi lunch.
We highly can recommend Masahisa as a guide he is very polite, punctual and a lovely person.
Aug. 2014 / B.S.
Husband and wife / Sydney. Australia
Having read favorable client reviews in Mr. Takaki's website, we decided to hire his services. My husband and I wanted to make a stop over in Japan together with our daughter and experience staying at a Ryokan with a private hot spring bath known as Onsen. We read much about this wonderful Japanese style hotel and were also curious about experiencing bathing Onsen style. After a few exchanges on email with Mr. Takaki, he recommended a two-night stay at a Ryokan equipped with a private Onsen in the northern part of Tokyo. Ikaho which is about 3 hours from Narita was worth the length of time to get to. It is a small town known for hot water spring baths and many Ryokan accommodations. Mr. Takaki's recommendation did not disappoint. He met us at the airport and we then proceeded via train to Ikaho, Shibuwaka City, Gunma Prefecture. When we arrived at this small and quaint town, we checked in at our Ryokan. Unfortunately, we arrived too late to experience our first night dining Japanese style at the Ryokan where typically, dinner and breakfast are served privately at a specified time. We decided to venture out into the town, 5 minutes drive. We were dropped off at the top of the popular Ishidan Stone Stairway. What a pleasant surprise to walk down the steps discovering many little shops and elegant places to eat! The view from the top was spectacular! We chose to dine at a small restaurant that served very delicious ramen noodles. When we arrived back at the Ryokan, Mr. Takaki made arrangements for our breakfast and left us to enjoy the rest of the evening. How we marveled at soaking in the Onsen! Our sleeping mattresses were neatly and comfortably laid on the tatami mats, there was hot tea to indulge in and we simply enjoyed unwinding in the Onsen overlooking the night sky. We rinsed off at the Japanese style shower and then put on our traditional Yukata's provided for our use while in the Ryokan and went to bed. It was the most comfortable sleep we've ever had wearing the Yukata! The following morning, they cleared our mattresses before serving us breakfast, Japanese style. In a Ryokan, having your meal and sleep all take place on the tatami mat. The japanese staff graciously come in and out serving course after course for meals and then clear and move the tables to one side before laying out the mattresses after dinner. For breakfast, it's the opposite where they clear the mattresses first, move the tables back to the center of the room where breakfast can begin to be served. A truly wonderful experience! We spent our last afternoon walking around the small town and looked forward to our last Onsen bath and sleeping on the comfortable mattresses laid out on the tatami floor of our quarters. We are glad to have experienced dinner on our last night, Japanese style. Quite elegant and enjoyable! Thank you Mr. Takaki for this wonderful and unforgettable Ryokan and Onsen experience. We look forward to hiring your services again in the future and will certainly recommend you to our friends and colleagues. For anyone looking for a unique adventure to unwind in Japan, we highly recommend a Ryokan and Onsen experience. The price of the accommodation and the trip to the mountains is well worth the expense. Guaranteed from our personal experience!
Gabriel, Seraphina and Angel from New York en route to the Philippines /Family
y wife and I took our first trip to Japan. We are both post-Medicare age. Prior to our trip we purchased a Lonely Planet Japan Guide Book and studied our proposed itinerary. We were overwhelmed, there is so much to see and do, and we do not speak Japanese. We started in Nagasaki, a small city which we were able to tour successfully on our own. We then took the Shinkansen to Kyoto, a larger city 1.5 million people and we had a Tea Ceremony and an afternoon bus tour as well as bus trip to Nara Then came the daunting prospect of Tokyo 13.5 million people, 13 separate subway lines, lack of knowledge of the Japanese language and pages of recommended sites to visit in the Lonely Planet Guide all arranged by section of the city of Tokyo. Fortunately I had a friend who had recently visited Japan. "You have to get a guide" he said. I searched the internet and stumbled upon Mr Masahisa Takaki. He assured us we would be "welcomed in my country", and we were ! He is a man who worked all his life in business, then became a government certified guide post-retirement. We were told that retired men are called "wet leaves" in Japan, because they are not easy for wives sweep away as dry leaves are. They insert themselves into their wives lives. Mr Takaki has avoided becoming a wet leaf and he has created a new career for himself and he was very useful to us. A lifelong Tokyo resident he knew the most interesting places and how to get to them. He met us at our hotel, took us through the labyrinthine subway system to the Tsukiji Fish Market, then to a beautiful Hama Rikyu garden with every tree and blade of grass perfectly manicured. A lovely Tea House situated on a little pond. We went back on the subway, changed subway lines twice and arrived at the Emperor Meji Shinto shrine, then Takashita Dori a street lined with shops for the young people and bustling with costumed teens. It was fun to see and walk through. He took us to a Japanese Ramen Restaurant for lunch that we never would have found by ourselves- delicious ! Then to an upscale toy shop for our grandchildren and an Artisans Collaborative, a street filled with shops having kitchen utensils and Quilt Shop (we requested because my wife is a quilter). The following day we were able to navigate the subway system on our own after his tutorial and go back to the toy store and Artisan collaborative for shopping and to the Tea House for afternoon tea. He was unable to meet us the following day so he arranged for Mr Kenshiro Tamura, also post retirement in a new career, to meet us at our hotel. Mr Tamura was equally competent and friendly and took us to the East Garden of the Emperor's Palace and all through the huge gardens and moats. He took us to the Sumo area and we had lunch at a Japanese Restaurant which we would never have found on our own. There was a Sumo Ring in the restaurant and I had my photo taken after a delicious lunch. We ended at the Edo Tokyo Museum, which we enjoyed immensely So you see all the things we did without having to worry, or figure out how to get to, or even think of which places we should visit. Tokyo is a beautiful city,but huge in size and we had only a few days to visit. We would highly recommend this guide service to tourists visiting Tokyo.
Mar. 2014/ Dan & Mary Shea
Husband and wife/ Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A
My husband and I contacted Mr. Takaki thru his website. We visited Japan for 5 days, starting out at Narita. Since we were arriving from a long trip coming from San Francisco, Mr. Takaki suggested we break our journey and stay a night at Narita so we can rest. It was a good suggestion as we were exhausted when we arrived at Narita! We enjoyed the afternoon visit, walking through the town on our way to Narita Temple. We were able to rest through the night before moving on to our next destination.The following day we arrived at Hakone and booked a night's stay at Yugawara Ryokan based on the recommendation of Mr. Takaki. The experience is worth it! Mr. Takaki did not disappoint us with his suggestion and he was very efficient in securing our tickets to visit Mt. Fuji. We were lucky to see Mt. Fuji on a perfectly clear day. The following day we proceeded to Takayama for 2 days with a day trip to Shirikawa-go. Again, we trusted the recommendations of Mr. Takaki and he did not disappoint us. We were so delighted to see a World Heritage Site that is uniquely Japanese in culture and history.We enjoyed Hida Beef, Takayama's pride when it comes to local dining paired with local beer and Shochu. Mr. Takaki took us to a neighborhood restaurant, Le Midi, in Takayama and we were reminded of Paris and Italy with its quaint atmosphere.Overall, our 5 days turned out to be quite memorable with the Mr. Takaki as our personal tour guide. The next time we return to Japan, we will definitely contact Mr. Takaki again for his tour services. He is easy to communicate with and open to our suggestions as well.Thank you Mr. Takaki for a job well done and the great personal service you provided for us for the entire 5 days.
Jan. 2014 / Jude and Lucy Carpio
Husband and wife/ San Francisco, California, U.S.A