JTB Corporation, the largest travel agency in Japan, is selling off two of its buildings in Tokyo and Osaka in a deal that could fetch tens of billions of Yen. The company has struggled since the start of the pandemic, with travel transaction volume dropping 96% in 2020.
In the few months since news broke of Seibu Holdings’ plan to offload some of its hotels, Blackstone Group and an investment fund affiliated with Morgan Stanley have emerged as possible buyers. Negotiations are expected to conclude by the end of the year.
The average office vacancy rate across Tokyo’s five business districts of Chiyoda, Chuo, Minato, Shinjuku, and Shibuya reached 6.31% in August, according to office brokerage Miki Shoji. This is a 0.03 point increase from the previous month and the 18th month in a row to see vacancy rates climb.
Reported transactions of second-hand apartments across greater Tokyo dropped again in August, according to REINS. That may be a side effect of the low inventory levels and limited apartments being listed for sale each month.
Various news articles the world over reported on city dwellers fleeing the confines of their urban life in the midst of the pandemic to more regional escapes as large companies became more flexible on remote work arrangements. Tokyo was no stranger to those clickbait articles. And while the stories might be true for some major international cities, buyer behavior in Tokyo shows a less sensational and more grounded reality.
With demolition on the horizon, there are some glimmers of hope that at least one of the 140-odd capsules in the iconic Nakagin Capsule Tower Building might just be spared from the trash heap.
The goal of one of the preservation groups is to save capsule A-606, both the capsule unit itself and its original interior. There are also plans to build a custom trailer so that the capsule can be towed around to various locations, such as museums, galleries, and universities allowing Kisho Kurokawa’s legacy to be appreciated by all. The estimated cost just to save this one capsule and make it mobile is around 6.5 million Yen (approx. US$59,000).
The average asking price of a 70 sqm (753 sq.ft) second-hand apartment in the Tokyo metropolitan area in July has increased month-on-month for the past 13 months. According to Tokyo Kantei, the average asking price was 58,000,000 Yen, up 1.6% from June and up 13.3% from July 2020.