Over spring break, 11 members of the Cornell Real Estate Club and the Baker Program in Real Estate traveled to Tokyo, Japan. Cornell Alumnus Daisuke Kitta, Sr., Managing Director Real Estate-Blackstone, Tokyo, coordinated our two-day itinerary.

The first day of the trek started at the Blackstone Tokyo Office where Mr. Kitta gave the group outstanding overview of BX Tokyo, offered his view of the Tokyo Real Estate market, and shared several recent investments. We continued our trek onward to the CBRE Japan Office where we received a synopsis of the Tokyo market through a detailed timeline of how we go to where we are today and how the economics of Tokyo’s market compare to decades prior. We finished our first day with a Cornell Hotel Society alumni reception at Boomin Vinum where we were warmly greeted by ~25 alumni! Every individual we interacted with treated us like royalty, and it made all of us feel honored to represent Cornell University.

The second day was filled with a bit more adventure and hands-on learning opportunities as we had the pleasure of not only visiting Ginza Six, but also meeting with the head developer of the site, and he showed us incredible architectural models of what is in the pipeline for development. We then continued onward to Hoshino Resort Tokyo, where we toured the posh economy hotel that was 30 days from opening. It was exciting to see the rooms near completion, yet so many details left to be flushed out before opening. Our journey concluded with Mr. Hosino’s (’91), President of Hoshino Resort, office where he stressed the importance of making a guest feel wonderful, and how this can be accomplished in many ways; however, in particular, the design of the hotel has a huge influence on guests’ experiences at a property.

Although the trip may sound tiring because of its whirlwind of events, the unbelievable amount of hospitality, culture, education, connections and advice we received outweighed the long days. Even travelers who do not know anyone before the trek will by the end of the trip acquire a new cadre of close friends who can share a set of wonderful memories.