Omotesando Hills is by Tokyo standards a boutique shopping mall, but its stylish design and fashionable location makes it one of the city’s better shopping experiences. The center on Omotesando is also a case study in the city’s approach to urban renewal.

Omotesando dori is perhaps Tokyo’s most elegant thoroughfare and it’s sometimes referred to as the city’s Champs-Élysées, connecting the funky fashion district of Harajuku with the refined shopping area that is Aoyama. It was created in 1920 to serve as a route to Harajuku’s Meiji Jingu and is distinguished by the rows of leafy zelkova trees that flank the wide avenue. The Omotesando Hills complex, which opened in 2005, straddles the informal boundary between Harajuku and Aoyama, its six levels evenly divided above and below ground level.

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