The Cupcake and I recently visited Osaka, Japan and it was the most memorable travel experience we’ve had so far. I’ll explain why when I write separate articles on things to do in Osaka and our complete itinerary with cost breakdown. For now, I really want to highlight the place we stayed in called the Muji Apartment—located near Temmabashi Station (of the Tanimachi Line, which is one of Osaka’s subways).
I booked the apartment via Airbnb last July, because when I was looking through booking sites like Agoda, I found the hotels either too expensive or too far away from the places I wanted to visit. My friends suggested that I try Airbnb, so I set up an account and found a place that fit our budget right away!
When it comes to accommodations (most especially when I travel), the top questions I ask myself are:
- Does it fit my budget?
- Is it near the places I want to visit?
- Is it clean and comfortable?
- Does it provide the basic necessities?
Reading the profile of the Muji Apartment, hosted by Teppei (who was born and raised in Osaka, and speaks English fluently), answered all these questions with a big, fat YES. The place was approximately Php 2,300 a night, was located in a safe and quiet area right beside a train station and a convenience store (Family Mart, yo!), was so incredibly clean and comfortable (you can also add cute to the list of “C” adjectives), and had everything we needed such as towels and toiletries. The apartment even came with a portable pocket wifi that’s rechargeable with a power bank and is faster than my Internet at home (this is already included in the Php 2,300/night payment), which Teppei told us, we could bring around Osaka to help us navigate (this was especially useful in commuting).
Though small, the picture-perfect apartment was everything I hoped for it to be. The reason it’s called the Muji Apartment is because everything from the bed sheets, to the towels, to the shampoo and conditioner bottles were bought from Muji!
Teppei (and his girlfriend, Misaki) were such wonderful hosts. The moment I booked the place last July, Teppei replied in minutes and was more than willing to assist me with our itinerary should I needed help. A few days before our trip, he messaged again just to make sure preparations for our trip were going smoothly. He also gave clear instructions on how to get to the apartment building, Elf Otemae, from Kansai International Airport, and what to do once we got to the building.
The day we were to fly to Osaka, our flight got delayed by an hour and we ended up arriving in Elf Otemae a little past 12 midnight. Teppei patiently waited for us and greeted us with a big smile. He gave us a quick tour of the place, and told us that if we needed anything or had any questions, he was just a message away. Communicating with him was very easy, especially because we had the pocket wifi the whole time. One of our concerns was also where to leave our luggage once we checked out on our last day, because our flight back to Manila was scheduled to leave at 8pm, and we still wanted to go around Osaka (but without the heavy bags). Teppei offered that we leave our bags in his office on the 2nd floor (our apartment was on the 5th floor). Because of this, it was easy for us to go around and food trip on our last day, knowing our bags were safe and in good hands. During the last day of our trip, we informed Teppei that we would check out at 9am so that we would have lots of time to go around. But because the Cupcake wasn’t feeling well, we rescheduled our check out at 12nn instead. When Teppei found out about the Cupcake’s condition, he immediately offered medicine, and told us to let him know if we needed anything. Even after checking out, Teppei offered that we keep the pocket wifi first so that we won’t have a difficult time navigating around the city.
Because the apartment is a 3-minute walk away from the Osaka Castle, and literally beside a train station, it was really easy for me to plan our itinerary. The room is really perfect if you’re going to be out and about all day, and just want a nice, cozy place to come home to. If we had questions such as where to find a money changer, Teppei was literally just a message away. He was always more than willing to assist, especially that time we did web check-in and needed to print our boarding passes. He immediately offered to print it for us.
I think one of the reasons this trip became the most memorable and meaningful so far is because of the unforgettable experience we had with Airbnb and Teppei. Teppei is the kind of host who won’t nag you and who respects your privacy, but if you need his assistance, he’ll go out of his way to help you. As a token of appreciation and because we were really so grateful that he hosted us, the Cupcake and I got Teppei a bottle of wine.
So that’s our first experience with Airbnb and the Muji Apartment! If you’re planning to visit Osaka soon, I highly recommend staying here! I had so much fun. I actually miss the place and look forward to booking it again. For more information on the Muji Apartments hosted by Teppei, check out this link: http://temmabashi.info/