After landing at Haneda Airport around 5am and finding I couldn’t exchange my JR Pass at the airport until close to 8, I decided to see if I’d have better luck at Shinagawa station, but alas it was not to be (they open at 9am), so I headed to Tokyo station where I knew the ticket office started exchanging JR Passes at 7:30am. I was 2nd in the queue and I had my JR Pass and a reserved seat on the Shinkansen to Nagoya in my hands by 7:45. A quick snack at Tokyo station and I was on my way to Nagoya at 200km/h around 8:30am.
I arrived in Nagoya station around 10:20am. The ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Grand Court Nagoya is in the Kanayama area of Nagoya right next to Kanayama station. You can get there using your JR Pass for the ~5 minute train trip.
I walked into the hotel around 10:45 asking to check-in early to be meet with a stony “check in is 2pm” by the trainee at the front desk (TripAdvisor tells me that I’m not the only one to receive this treatment). I had to point out that as an IHG Ambassador Spire Elite I get to check in early if a room is available. They checked my IHG status and I was in my room by 11am for a quick snooze and shower before heading out get a SIM card and explore.
Room was large, quiet and well appointed. I had a view out over southwest Nagoya.
I didn’t partake of room service or the restaurants in the hotel as there were many bars and restaurants in the surrounding streets to have authentic meals at. Decent coffee (not Starbucks – yuck!), beer, yakitori & okonomiyaki are all within 5 to 7 minutes walking distance from the hotel.
I did have a couple of drinks at the hotel bar on the 30th floor, STAR GATE, which has pretty good views of southwest Nagoya down to the waterfront area. Drinks were expensive (like most hotel bars) so it was good for a couple of drinks while you look at the view. Be warned, they allow smoking in the bar area.
I had 3 days exploring Nagoya and the hotel was a good base being about 5 minutes from Nagoya station.
Check-out was very efficient on the last day and I was on my way to Osaka just after midday.
In retrospect ANA Crowne Plaza Hotel Grand Court Nagoya is a decent hotel, in a reasonably good location. Front desk staff need more training on how to treat guests though.