Kotoriku, Akihisa Hirata Architects,

IMGP0452Undoubtedly, here we are in front of a new invention about the use of the concrete, which means a lot.

The location is in a high profile area of Tokyo, called meguro-ku and going there we have seen so many villas as never before. It is a bulding for apartment in a japanese style which means for Us, westerns, small and often low (see the floor plans here for specific areas numbers). This particular case has probably faced many restrictions since counterceilings are absent and on the top of your head there is a particular concrete which resembles the one visible from this picture. Here below the assays of the dye before they decide.

IMGP0469It was a specific open day, a sort of vernissage, open house is called here in Tokyo after USA style I believe, thus there were more young architects than real customers.

An apartment was used for the explanation of the design process which took two years, and the exhibition of the modelling which is a sort of thing that mr.Hirataand his teammates are really good at.


The floor you can see is wood made, protected by a rough white hue.  Here is another blog with better pictures than mine.

My unrequested suggestion is to be a bit more misterious about the process. For instance this concrete is really good. Maybe it is not so evident and clear how to reproduce as it seems, I would rather to hide the secret ot the making instead of expose it. Maybe somebody else would claim the copyright one day!

If you like to know more about the concept ofMr.Hirata, he pulbished a book called Tangling, written in japanese and English (the amazon link It is not a book for everybody, Leibniz and Newton are juxtapposed for instance.).

Also here a dense article that summarize his approach.

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AQUA City Mall, Odaiba.


It is a well known spot, in front of the already mentioned Fuji Tv Building.

Here the mall official link. Probably the architect are this office, called K& Factory but I am still not sure. The mall is a bit dated (maybe around 1996) and surely has been under recent renovation. It is just next to the Tokyo Decks, another big mall in Odaiba built in 1996, where among others the Lego city is situated.

This review about shops says Sony Development design which means? I do not know. There was even a wedding inside meanwhile we were strolling. An acquarium also is somwhere,donwstair there is the entrance of the multiplex cinema and the Mediage Sony sort of Museum is a t the 3 Floor if i remember well.

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PIAS GINZA 4-8-10 、 Kume Sekkei, 久米設計



During the same day of the Tokyo Marathon in downtown Ginza I saw this twisted tower and I couldn`t resist to take some shots. They are a very well known and established company in Japan. Here is their official homepage, you might want to check it out.

It seems they learnt the lesson from Kengo Kuma for this design or maybe I am just influenced by the contemporary thoughts. Anyway it is a clever way to make things interesting. I hope you like it. I shot also some details about the system they used.  Here below some data from this blog.

銀座4-8-8 店舗・事務所・駐車場
構造:地下SRC・RC、地上S  直接基礎
高さ56m 工作物を含む高さ66m
着工予定H18年4月1日 完了予定H20年2月29日
施主:ピアスアライズ株式会社 (大阪

If you are interested in know more about PIAS, here is their link. Here instead a japanese blog about the same subject and others interesting towers. A note to the steel assembler is due.

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Shibayama Ginza Building、柴山銀座ビル, d.n.a. architects, 1987

IMGP0160It comes from 1987. Someone could tell it. The architects for instance. They declare something like this in their website

3 , I want to design a storage .
I think “time” architecture because it is designed , the person who thought , the person who made , people with , people who passed by , that memorable of all people , that we can get to keep the universality of one .

I liked and here it is,very simple. We were there during the Tokyo Marathon when it happens to see something extraordinaire, a sushi chef standing one the roof watching the runners!


LaLaport Funabashi Shopping Center, Lalaport Tokyobay

The most important feature of this huge Mall is the space dedicated to children. My wife has called the best ever. Borne Lunde are the makers of this Heaven for kids.

and it deserves the first picture. I assure it was more enjoyable than you can imagine from this shot.


The mall itself is located outside of Tokyo (we were technically already in Chiba prefecture), just in the proximity of Ikea (here are the directions).

I recall a long walk to go back to Ikea crossing a big road. In the beginning we took the Bus, it was a dedicated free shuttle

Dozen of shops sings were  saying there would be a new opening later in April (or was it March?). A nice food court with several tasty menu and so on. It was fun and a bit exauhsting. In their website there is also the history of the place from 1981, when started with 200 shops up to nowadays with 540! It is feasible you may find what you like there. I wanted to buy a dozen of ties.

Here an article describes the positive feelings about this centre. I could not figure out who were the Mal`s designers. Since may renovation are occured,they probabaly are several within the years.

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