195. Item #90598
[IMPERIAL HOTEL PAMPHLET]. 18.5 x 12.2cm staple-bound pamphlet with color illustrations, monochromatic illustrations and English and Japanese text.
The clever design of this pamphlet makes it accessible to both Japanese and English speakers. Both front and rear wrappers show the same color illustration of the Imperial Hotel and gardens in Tokyo. Opened Japanese-style, the wrapper title reads [Teikoku Hoteru Tokyo] 帝国ホテル東京, while opened Western-style, the wrapper title is "Imperial Hotel Tokyo Japan."  pages, including inner wrappers, feature realistic drawings of rooms in the hotel interior and an exterior section, with the name of the room/place in English and Japanese, Japanese text and a lovely floral drawing in green ink.
The inner wrapper of the English cover page has the name of the hotel in Japanese as well as the phone number. Inumaru Tetsuzo犬丸徹三 (1887-1981) is listed as the hotel president. Inomaru was acquainted with numerous luminaries who stayed at the hotel, including Marilyn Monroe and Joe Dimaggio. Before gaining fame in Tokyo, the hotelier worked in the business performing menial tasks in hotels in New York, Shanghai and London. He was employed at the Imperial Hotel in 1919, gradually working his way up to president in 1945. A member of staff in 1923 during the great earthquake, he is credited with keeping the hotel, guests and workers safe. His son Ichiro also eventually became president and his grandson later filled the role of deputy general manager.
The 6 areas featured are Peacock Alley, the main banquet hall, main dining room, south court garden and piazzas, a bedroom and the front lobby. Text includes information on the restaurants, such as the Grill, Sukiyaki and Prunier [translates as Plum Tree] with hours of operation.
Given Inumaru's tenure as president, the pamphlet can be dated between 1945-1970, and was likely from the mid-1950s.
The building's exterior and interior as well as most furnishings and dishes and glassware, were designed by well-known US architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The hotel stood in central Tokyo from 1923, when it was completed, until 1968 when it was demolished to make room for an updated building.
This lovely pamphlet is a reminder of a time when the hotel was considered the finest in Japan, a symbol of cooperation between Japan and the US; a blend of traditional East Asian and Native American design and modern Western aesthetics.