japanlifetokyo

The Soho Odaiba: Tokyo’s Most Colourful Office Space

The Soho in Odaiba is a place that’s been on my casual To-Do list for a while. After I saw photos of it on Instagram months ago, I kept in the back of my mind for when I was next in the area. Well, this weekend the opportunity finally presented itself. I was accompanying a friend on her first time to Venus Fort, when I remembered The Soho was only a short 15 – 20 minute walk away. She indulged me, so we hopped over and I was finally able to get some shots of this colourful piece of architecture!

The Soho Odaiba's colourful doorways

What is The Soho?

Although Soho is the name of unrelated districts in London and New York, in Japan the term is most often used to refer to a type of room which can be used as both an apartment and an office. In this usage, “SOHO” is short for “small office/home office.”

The Soho in Odaiba is exactly this. A modern 13-storey collaborative complex in Tokyo’s most prominent waterfront area, it offers shared work spaces and home offices for rent. Furthermore, it claims to draw inspiration from the “sense of liberty” of Soho in New York, so it appears there is a double meaning enclosed.

The Soho Odaiba entrance
That’s New Work, not New York.

There are three room types available for rent, with prices varying depending on the floor level and space size. As with most Japanese property leases, the initial contract is for two years.

Flexible Soho (2F – 4F): Shared work spaces and basic open-plan offices ranging from around 70 sq metres to 140 sq metres which can be arranged to your liking.

Standard Soho (5F – 9F): Slightly smaller size open-plan office spaces, but these rooms come equipped with a toilet and sink.

Luxury Soho (10F – 13F): Offices which double as an apartment, so you can live and work in the same place. These studio-style rooms come with a kitchen, shower booth, and toilet. Although the main room is spacious and some have views over Tokyo Bay, the facilities look a little spartan and don’t really give me a homely feeling. But if you’re saving on rent and commute you can’t complain, right?

The building also has common spaces that tenants can use, including a convention centre, a fitness room and a bar lounge. Some are free, some require additional fees.

What makes The Soho special?

The Soho Odaiba's colourful doorways with a long exposure
Longer than necessary exposure.

Just look at it. Its super colourful. Those are actually doorways, and when lit up at night the whole building exterior becomes a top Instagrammable spot. So much so that there’s now a sign on the lobby doors warning against unauthorised visitors and Instagrammers. We were respectful and I just contented myself taking photos from the outside. It would have been nice to be able to get some shots from higher up, though. Time to make friends with someone renting a space there, I guess?

Getting to The Soho Odaiba

The Soho Odaiba is a 5-minute walk from either Tokyo International Cruise Terminal Station or Telecom Center on the New Transit Yurikamome Line, a driver-less monorail with gorgeous views of Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Bay.

東京都江東区青海2丁目7-4
2-7-4 Aomi, Koto-ku, Tokyo

The inside of the building can only be accessed by people with a card, but you can take photos from the outside anytime. The consensus is that the building looks more impressive at night when lit up.

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