capsule hotels first emerged in japan in the late 1970s. mostly located around major railway hubs, they originally served as a last minute refuge for commuters who had missed their last connection back home. fast forward to 2009, when the first design equivalent opened its doors in kyoto. sleek, modern and comfortable, the nine hours hotel would even tickle the curiosity of the most sceptic of critics of this specific hospitality formula. the sleeping pods have been specially designed, featuring a built-in panasonic system that helps guests to doze off to wonderland and also wake them up gently by changing the light. each pod comes with sleeping gear, and there are separate section for male and female guests. and although there's a standard 9 hour stay limit - hence the hotel name - it's possible to extend it. leading up to the opening of a second nine hours property this summer right next to terminal 2 at tokyo's narita airport, a special installation has been set up in one of the departure halls to announce its arrival. location: terminal 2, third floor [narita airport].