For an overview of Tokyo 's schizophrenic nerve-centre, Shinjuku, take the elevator to the Pole Star Lounge Bar, crowning the Keio Plaza Inter-Continental. Below you the streets buzz and crackle frenetically. This is Tokyo 's entertainment jugular, where plush department stores and salarymen returning from work rub shoulders incongruously with the telephone bars, love hotels and 'pink shows' of Tokyo 's red-light district, Kabuki-cho. Rising above the seething urbanity is the Shinjuku Sumitomo building, and at 51 storeys it can hold its claim that it's 'a building that's actually a city' without too much dissent.
When your nerves are about to snap the perfect antidote is to head for Shinjuku Gyoen, an imperial garden designed at the turn of the century. Spring sees the park's 1500 cherry trees throwing out pink and white blossoms, the perfect umbrella under which to see if you have a taste for saki.