Peter Thiel has backed a startup that makes it easier to sue and win

Legalist uses a database of legal records to determine the likelihood that a case will succeed, and can fund the suit in exchange for up to 50% of the judgment

Peter Thiel has backed a small legal startup that has developed an algorithm they say will allow a would-be litigant to learn if they are likely to win their case.

Legalist, founded by a pair of Harvard undergrads, uses a vast database of local legal records to determine the likelihood that the case will succeed: and if the algorithm says the case can win, Legalist funds the suit in exchange for up to 50% of the judgment.

Eva Shang co-founded the startup with a $100,000 Thiel Foundation grant. She told the Silicon Valley Business Journal, which first reported on the startup on Wednesday, that Legalist wasnt interested in the kind of suit Thiel funded against Gawker through Hulk Hogan. Shang said the startup focuses on small businesses tied up in costly litigation; the firm has accepted a single case so far.

Shang told the Guardian the startup was funding limited cases at the moment and stressed what she said were the businesss philanthropic aims. I used to work for a public defender in DC, she said. Were not funding criminal cases, nor would I be funding any suits against the media.

Litigation financing as a field is growing so fast, but the one area its not actually getting to is small businesses.

Shang said she didnt understand when she took the Thiel fellowship that it would come with so much negative attention. I accepted the Thiel fellowship because my parents are first-generation immigrants and when I was dropping out of Harvard, money was a concern, she said.

Thiel famously pays undergraduates to drop out of college, and Shang is among this summers crop of former students.

At the moment, Shang and Christian Haigh, the other founder, are the only people who decide what suits to take. Shang said she had considered forming an advisory board to mitigate ethical concerns. The press attention on the Thiel-backed startup, she said, has been stressful.

Haigh said he could not answer questions until Friday. The pair is attending consecutive meetings at a conference sponsored by one of the startups other backers, Ycombinator.

Ycombinators Sam Altman told the Guardian he did not think Legalist would be used to fund lawsuits attempting to chill the press and characterized the business as one that defends the little guy. There are a lot of people who really get screwed over by the legal system and who end up unable to defend themselves, he said. Shang used the example of a bakery damaged by a burst pipe bogged down in costly litigation.

But there is always the possibility that the ready availability of enough cash to pay for an aggressive suit will encourage litigation. Altman admitted the problem was complex: With legal financing, this is one case where I can really empathize with both sides of the argument, he said.

There is also the practice of scouting for courts where local laws are particularly friendly to the kind of case a litigant wants to pursue. Fully one-fourth of all patent law cases are heard in a single town in Texas where the judge is known for overturning so-called patent troll judgments, Motherboard writes. That can get counsel into trouble, but it can also work out in their favor: Judge Pamela Campbell was far friendlier in the Hogan case, when Thiel was backing the plaintiff than US District Judge James Whittemore, the first time Hogan sued the website over the tape.

Thiel told the New York Times he was upset Gawker had outed him in a 2007 blog post entitled Peter Thiel is Totally Gay, People and backed the suit against the site in an effort to chill reporting he deemed ruined peoples lives for no reason. A New Yorker profile of Thiel from 2011 reported that Thiel had come out as gay in 2003.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/aug/24/peter-thiel-legalist-startup-gawker-lawsuit

Massachusetts is subsidizing its taxi industry by taxing Uber


Massachusetts taxis will get a boost from a new tax on ride-hailing in the state.
Image: david l. ryan/Boston Globe via Getty Images

Ride an Uber, give five cents to the struggling taxi industry.

Massachusetts will tax Uber with a new law that uses some of the fees to support the traditional taxi industry.

The state is introducing a $0.20 per-trip fee for ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft. Ten cents from that fee will go toward local transportation infrastructure in cities and towns, 5 cents will go toward the state’s Department of Public Utilities and 5 cents will support Massachusetts’ taxis.

The tax, part of comprehensive transportation legislation passed in early August, is likely the first of its kind. It amounts to a subsidy for the struggling taxi industry provided by the massively successful ride-hailing industry.

Uber and Lyft will have to pay the tax directly, without passing on the fee to riders or drivers.

We are grateful for Governor Bakers support and the legislatures effort towards creating a framework that embraces an innovative industry that has changed the way the Commonwealth moves,” Uber Boston General Manager Chris Taylor said in a statement. “We look forward to working with the administration to implement the law to ensure it increases transportation options and economic growth.

Uber operates throughout Massachusetts, covering the greater Boston area as well as significant portions of western Massachusetts.

The statewide law and its locally allotted funds takes some pressure off of local jurisdictions to independently regulate Uber’s growing presence.

The fees are temporary. The taxi subsidy is in place for five years, and the entire tax is in place for 10.

It hasn’t yet been determined exactly how the taxi industry will spend its portion of the tax income. All the law specifies is that the money from the fee will “provide financial assistance to small businesses operating in the taxicab, livery or hackney industries to encourage the adoption of new technologies and advanced service, safety and operational capabilities and support workforce development.”

The legislation is framed as in support of “innovative transportation options” in Massachusetts.

I am pleased to sign bipartisan legislation to ensure Massachusetts remains a leader for innovative new technologies, with safe and diverse transportation options and opportunities for hardworking individuals to earn a living,” Governor Charlie Baker said in a statement. This regulatory framework includes many of our own proposals to embrace disruptive technology and prioritize public safety to give consumers safe and reliable travel choices.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/uber-massachusetts-tax-taxis/

Watchdog group says Kardashians don’t disclose ads on social media, violating FTC rules


From left, Kim Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian and Khloe Kardashian arrive at the Teen Choice Awards in Universal City, Calif.
Image: Associated Press/Chris Pizzello, File

The Kardashian family is famous for broadcasting their private lives in lurid detail but one advocacy group says they don’t share enough when it comes to paid social media gigs.

Truth in Advertising recently sent a letter to family manager Kris Jenner and dozens of associated brands alleging that five members of the reality show tribe have repeatedly failed to disclose instances in which Instagram posts were paid for by an advertiser a violation of the Federal Trade Commission’s rules.

The letter specifically named Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, Kourtney Kardashian, Kylie Jenner and Kendall Jenner as offenders, as well as brands such as Puma, Fit Tea and Calvin Klein.

One of the offending posts named in the letter.

Like many celebrities, the Kardashians often use their popular social media accounts to plug brands in exchange for money.

Under the FTC’s rules, these paid posts must be clearly marked as such in order to avoid deceiving potential customers.

The agency tightened those guidelines earlier this month, telling Bloomberg that the most commonly used indicators #ad, #sp and #sponsored are not clear enough on their own.

Some of the Kardashian branded posts are sprinkled with these abbreviated disclosures, but others make no mention of a sponsorship. The Kardashians appear to have retroactively edited a few of the posts following the publication of the letter.

If the FTC does decide to look into the matter it wouldn’t be the first time a Kardashian has run afoul of a government agency on social media. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent a scolding letter to Kim last summer over a morning sickness drug ad it saw as misleading.

Despite the FTC’s strict warnings, adherence to the disclosure rule seems to be somewhat scattered. On Snapchat, for instance, popular users only recently started marking ads at all. On Twitter, where space is limited, celebrities often flout the rule.

Stefania Pomponi, founder and president of an influencer marketing agency called Clever Girls, said she notices more violations among big-name celebrities than the less famous bloggers and personalities that make up the bulk of the industry.

“It’s not the mom blogger in the midwest who’s going to be the violation they’re trying to do the right thing,” she says. “They’re frustrated by the fact that celebrities like the Kardashians who basically live a Truman Show, completely sponsored life don’t disclose anything.”

Even if the FTC did decide to act, it can’t actually fine anyone; at most, the group can mandate an apology or, in extreme cases, force a customer reimbursement.

Advertising lawyer Jeffrey Greenbaum told Mashable in an earlier interview that the nebulous world of social media marketing has proven a headache for the FTC. In recent months, the agency seems to be making a concerted effort to crack down on offenders.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/kardashian-ads-ftc/

Amazon’s cheap new music subscription service will only work on the Echo


Amazon Echo could soon start offering cheap, unlimited music.
Image: Mashable, Jhila Farzaneh

Music subscription services such as Spotify and Apple Music typically cost around 10 bucks a month, but Amazon might soon be offering a service that costs half as much if you own its Echo music player.

According to a report by Recode, which cites industry sources, it would cost either $4 or $5 per month, offering unlimited, ad-free music. Typically, that price point is reserved for internet radio services, such as Pandora One, which does not let users choose individual songs to play.

Amazon’s cheap new service would offer that, but users would not be able to access it on phones or other devices only the Echo.

Launched in late 2014, the Echo is a cylindrical speaker/music player that comes with Amazon’s own digital assistant, Alexa. Amazon has not released sales numbers for the echo, but one report claims the company has sold a million devices in the second half of 2015.

Amazon is also working on a standard music service, which would cost $10 per month. Both services could be launched as early as September, though Amazon is still working on the deals with music publishers.

It’s not unlike Amazon to tie its hardware and content offerings together into a low-priced package; in fact, even the Echo itself was initially $100 cheaper for Amazon Prime subscribers. But constraining a service to one piece of hardware means your market is mostly limited to that device’s owners, and the finer points price and possible bundle deals could make all the difference here.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/amazon-echo-music-service/

Learn how to edify your email etiquette in our next #BizChats

Image: mashable composite

Email. is. Everywhere.

Email has impacted much more than our overflowing inboxes. Whether a nuisance in your eyes or the best thing since sliced bread, email has revolutionized the way we disseminate information with one another.

One of the major things professionals struggle the most with over email is fighting to be seen in a sea of hundreds (or maybe thousands) of emails. What does it really take to stand out from the rest?

Join us Thursday, August 25 at 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST for our next #BizChats Twitter chat where well be discussing how to improve your email marketing game and set yourself for a response after you click “send.”

Joining us will be: AJ Ghergich, SEO & content marketing expert for Ghergich & Co.; John Haydon, digital PR and fundraising expert, speaker and author; and Paul Dunay, financial services and U.S. marketing leader for PwC;

Follow @MashBusiness and join in using the hashtag #BizChats. We look forward to hearing your questions.

Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/email-etiquette-bizchats/

Orca-friendly products could be coming to your home improvement store

Image: Chase Dekker Wild-Life Images/Getty Images; Pacific Whale Watch Association

Move over, dolphin-safe tuna and bee-friendly pesticides, and make room for orca-friendly products on the shelf.

This week, two Ace Hardware stores in Washington state will begin placing “orca-friendly” tags on products that won’t harm the marine environment of the Puget Sound, the seasonal home of endangered Southern Resident killer whales.

“We weren’t really calling attention to the fact that products are going down the drain or running off from gardens and into the water, so what better way to make a statement than labeling certain products as orca safe?” said Randy Burgess, owner of the two Ace stores. One store is in Anacortes on Puget Sound, and the other is in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, where orcas frequent the waters each spring and summer.

“What better way to make a statement than labeling certain products as orca safe?”

“The consumer has lots of choices, but someone who owns a business has the ability to persuade others to buy products that won’t hurt our orca friends all around us,” Burgess said.

The stores, in conjunction with the Pacific Whale Watch Association, have marked about 100 items with the tags, including Method and Mrs. Meyer’s cleaning products, Dr. Earth insecticides, and E.B. Stone and Gardener & Bloome fertilizers.

Hobbes Buchanan, owner of San Juan Island Whale & Wildlife Tours and Black Fish Tours, broached the label idea about a year and a half ago.

“So many products are devastating to our environment, and the more I looked at the condition of our oceans, I knew we needed to do something,” Buchanan said. “I realize it’s just baby steps, but … we have a bunch of whales and wildlife in our area hurtling toward extinction, and we really need to help them.”

Image: Pacific Whale Watch Association

“We’re thrilled about this,” said Michael Harris, executive director of the 38-member Pacific Whale Watching Association, which has a long history of promoting efforts to save killer whales. “Ultimately it’s about providing consumers with choices, and there’s no better place to facilitate greener choices about household products than hardware stores in orca country.”

By all accounts, orca country is a troubled place. The Southern Resident population, which numbers 83, was listed as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in 2005. Dwindling salmon stocks, especially chinook the whales’ preferred prey and environmental toxins are their biggest threats.

Peter Ross, director of Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Pollution Research Program and a leading ecotoxicologist, said two broad categories of contaminants affect orcas. The first includes persistent organic pollutants such as PCBs and DDT, which accumulate in whales even though they were banned years ago.

“It’s really important to make sure the right kind of … scientists are … being really critical about how we define orca-friendly.”

Some household products, including antibacterial soaps containing the chemical triclosan, “are a bit persistent and do accumulate in food webs,” Ross said.

In the other category are products made with water-soluble ingredients, which are far less persistent and bioaccumulative but nonetheless toxic. They include many cleaning products, some pesticides and the common herbicide atrazine.

Those contaminants might not accumulate in orcas and other marine mammals, but they could have a negative impact on salmon and other prey fish.

As for fertilizers, Ross said organic compounds are preferable to synthetic ones because they dont contain metals and other dangerous contaminants. But excessive nutrients from any fertilizer runoff can cause fish-killing algal blooms.

Still, Ross said the orca-friendly label was “a great idea and a good way to connect consumers with the protection of killer whales and their habitat.”

But Ross had a caveat.

“It’s really important to make sure the right kind of chemists and toxicologists and environmental scientists are reviewing the data and being really critical about how we define orca-friendly,” he said.

Burgess, who was in Chicago attending an Ace Hardware corporate convention at the time of this interview, said he was planning to show the label to about 40 Ace Hardware store owners from western Washington.

All 4,700 Ace stores are privately owned, and merchants have considerable leeway in deciding what to stock.

Last year, Ace said it would phase out the sale of pesticides that are known to kill bees. Burgess said he had eliminated those products, and the orca-friendly label was unrelated to that move. Officials from Ace Hardware Corporation did not respond to interview requests.

This article originally published at TakePart here

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/orca-friendly-products-ace-hardware/

Chipotle employees can post whatever they want on Twitter, decision says


Chipotle can’t prevent its workers from tweeting or posting about the company online.
Image: joe raedle/Getty Images

Chipotle employees, tweet your hearts out.

The National Labor Relations Board ruled that Chipotle can’t fire employees for airing their grievances with the company on Twitter or other social networks. More than that, the company can’t prohibit employees from posting about their jobs on social media at all.

Chipotle’s social media policy, which prevented employees from posting disparaging information about the company, violated federal labor laws, the board decided.

The question came up when a Chipotle worker in Havertown, Pa. was fired after tweeting about low wages and circulating a petition about employees’ breaks online, according to Philly.com.

When a customer tweeted to thank Chipotle for a free meal in January 2015, Chipotle employee James Kennedy responded, “Nothing is free, only cheap #labor. Crew members only make $8.50hr how much is that steak bowl really?”

Kennedy later deleted the tweet, but he still ended up getting fired.

Now, Chipotle has to offer to hire him back and pay him back wages.

But the burrito chain also has to totally revamp its social media policies. It can’t have a “social media code of conduct” that prevents employees from posting false, disparaging or inaccurate information.

Also found illegal were policies prohibiting employees from circulating petitions, from solicitation during working hours and from discussing politics within the context of work at Chipotle.

It even has to post signs saying that its policies were found illegal and have been changed.

So, Chipotle employees are basically free to do as they please online. Watch out, @ChipotleTweets.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/08/23/chipotle-labor-law-twitter/

Campaign Shake-up: Donald Trump Has Fired The Man In Charge Of Explaining What Donald Trump Is To Gorillas

Here we go again.

Donald Trumps campaign has undergone some major reshuffling in the past few weeks, and his latest staff shake-up proves that his troubles are far from over. Early this morning, the Trump campaign announced that its fired the man in charge of explaining what Donald Trump is to gorillas, with no official word yet on who his replacement will be.

Yikes. Things are not looking good for Donald.

Trumps gorilla outreach has been a part of his campaign since day one, but the programs fledgling results have left many wondering about the fate of its leader, longtime Trump family ally Jeff Hawkins. Hawkins role in the campaign was to build awareness of Donald Trump among gorillas by positioning him as a good, strong alpha male who is skilled at crushing things. But like so much of Trumps campaign, this expensive initiative couldnt get out of its own way.

While Hawkins has spent tireless hours trying to increase Trumps recognizability within the primate community, it simply hasnt been enough. After nearly $15 million spent on the project, less than 40 percent of gorillas in American zoos were able to look at a picture of Trump and point to a hammer, as Hawkins had promised all great apes would be able to do by June. After it was made public that even fewer gorillas were able to sign Rage King after watching a clip of one of Trumps speeches, Hawkins fate was sealed. The campaign is now taking drastic measures to get back on track.

While the campaign has yet to formally announce who Hawkins replacement will be, all signs point to Trumps former business partner, Liam Wetherton. Wetherton was recently spotted heading into the Bronx Zoo with a 8 x 10 portrait of the Republican presidential nominee, a book of sign language, and a big red ball. Its not clear how the campaigns gorilla strategy will evolve under Wethertons famously aggressive leadership. But with such disappointing numbers so far, hes got a lot of work to do before gorillas know to build a throne out of rocks and sticks when a life-sized Trump mannequin is placed in their pen.

Trumps campaign has been a tumultuous one, and a high-profile firing like this one proves that theres still plenty of trouble brewing behind the scenes. Donalds got a long road ahead if he wants to win the White House, and an even longer road if he wants gorillas to know about him before he gets there. Well just have to wait and see if this latest shake-up can steer his campaign in a better direction.

Read more: http://www.clickhole.com/article/campaign-shake-donald-trump-has-fired-man-charge-e-4802

Wanlockhead community buyout: Why buy Scotland’s highest village? – BBC News

Image copyright Lincoln Richford

Sitting at a height of 467m (1,532ft), it claims to be the highest village in Scotland.

And now the residents of Wanlockhead in Dumfries and Galloway have some pretty lofty ambitions for its future.

The local community trust recently held talks about a buyout involving purchasing land which is part of the Duke of Buccleuch’s Queensberry Estate.

They hope to improve economic development and enhance tourism and leisure in the area.

But what potential do they see in the south of Scotland village?


What is its history?

A village in the Lowther Hills, at the head of Wanlock Water, it sits about 11 miles (17km) north of Thornhill.

The area around the village and its neighbour, Leadhills, was long a centre for lead-mining.

The mines round Wanlockhead opened in 1680 and finally closed in 1959; Wanlockhead is now home to the Museum of Scottish Lead Mining.


Gold in them thar hills

Image copyright Sara Bain

Gold has been found in the streams round about, and small quantities are still found by eager panners.

Last year a nugget estimated to be worth 10,000 was discovered.

Gold from the area was used in the crown of James V, in a ring for Queen Mary and in a brooch for Queen Elizabeth.


Any famous figures?

Born in nearby Leadhills in Lanarkshire, William Symington became a mechanic at the Wanlockhead mines.

In 1787 he patented an engine for road locomotion and, in 1788, he constructed a similar engine on a boat fitted with twin hulls and paddle-wheels, which was launched on Dalswinton Loch.

In 1802 he completed at Grangemouth the Charlotte Dundas, one of the first practical steamboats ever built.


Commuter belt

Image copyright Leadhills and Wanlockhead Railway

A narrow gauge railway runs between Leadhills in south Lanarkshire and the village.

It became famous earlier this year when it offered an unusual “commuter” service while the road link was closed for resurfacing.

It offered a “replacement train” service to allow people from Wanlockhead to get to the doctor’s surgery as well as ferrying some staff at the Museum of Lead Mining.


Cycling challenge

Image copyright Ross Dolder

A gruelling cycling challenge has its starting point in the village.

The Snowball Sportive allows riders to tackle some of the highest roads in the country.

But with six major climbs along its route, it is not for the faint hearted.


On the piste

Image copyright Ross Dolder

Winter sports fans can join the south of Scotland’s only ski centre.

The Lowther Hills Ski Club is situated near the village.

Volunteers who run the club believe that, with improved facilities, they could draw hundreds of people to the region.


Will the buyout happen?

First talks between the Wanlockhead Community Trust (WCT) and Buccleuch were described as “very productive”.

Lincoln Richford, who chairs the WCT, said: “We look forward to working further with Buccleuch Estates. I believe that we can find a mutually satisfying solution for both parties that will ensure a bright future for our village.”

John Glen, of Buccleuch, said: “We were pleased to have had this initial meeting with the trust as the estate is committed to playing its part in local economic development. We have held discussions with various interest groups over the years and there is a range of options that we should all consider that could help improve the sustainability of the area. As there are many complex issues to discuss, it is too early to form any conclusions or reach decisions. However, we look forward to continuing a constructive dialogue with the trust’s representatives and villagers.”

Further meetings are planned and the WCT is expected to register a formal interest in the land with the Scottish government later this year.

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-south-scotland-37165106

Posh pods: Inside Tokyo’s swankiest capsule hotels

(CNN)Dressed in black and purple pajamas with keycards around their necks, two Japanese businessmen sip whiskey in a Tokyo hotel lobby bar.

Next to them, a woman in business attire dress puffs away on a cigarette while chatting to two Western backpackers.
    It’s an unusual sight to many eyes but it’s not an untypical Tuesday evening in one of Tokyo’s most trendy inns — a swanky, upscale capsule hotel.
    Traditionally, Japanese capsule hotels have had a shabby reputation.
    Often located in the popular bar areas, the coffin-sized sleep spaces are notoriously frequented by Japanese salarymen in a drunken stupor who missed their last train home. Most are men-only.
    Now, a new kind of stylish capsule hotel is popping up across the country.
    With a blend of function and style, they attract both local business people and foreign hipsters in search of fashionable accommodation.
    Here’s a look at several capsule hotels that are changing the game.

    First Cabin Tsukiji

    You may just be waking up, but I'm going to sleep. Sleep in my capsule. #sushimeetskabob #tokyo #capsulehotel

    A photo posted by arteen arabshahi (@arteeninla) on

    First Cabin Tsukiji — where I stayed during my last visit to the Japanese capital — is part of one of the most popular hotel chains that’s redefining the capsule concept.
    The reception area, which is integrated with the bar, looks like an airport business class lounge.
    Despite the more luxurious approach, it still represents compact living in its most extreme form.
    The room — sorry, capsule — is basically just a bed.
    When I stretch my arms I easily touch both walls.
    No desk. No closet. No floor. But it’s high enough to stand up straight, which makes it feel surprisingly spacious.
    It’s clean, comfortable and actually very cozy.
    First Cabin aims to create a feeling of being in the first class cabin of an airplane. But for me it evoked memories of hiding in one of the small huts I built as a child, where the entrance was covered with a blanket and comics were read by flashlight.
    Instead of a door, there’s a sliding pull-down shutter. Above the shutter is a 32-inch flat screen TV with headphones so as not to disturb neighbors. There’s a safety box where valuables can be stored.
    What else do you need, really?
    I slipped into my hotel-issue pajamas and strolled down the corridors, which are lined with capsules.
    Every few steps there was the sound of snoring or a person packing a bag. Signs urge guests to be quiet at all times while in the sleeping area.
    I nodded discretely to my fellow lodgers as I made my way to the shared facilities, like showers and lavatories. Two floors up is the hotel’s 24-hour public bathing area, with characteristic Japanese hot tubs.
    Men and women stay on different floors, with the sleeping areas and facilities accessed with a key card.
    Located just a few minutes walk from the famous fish market and close to the Ginza shopping district, First Cabin Tsukiji is one of the best budget accommodations in the area.
    The chain has expanded and now has a total of five hotels in Tokyo and three more in Kyoto, Osaka and Fukuoka.

    9h nine hours

    Another chain that has gained attention for its swanky approach to minimalistic living is 9h nine hours.
    First opened in 2008 in Kyoto, it has expanded across the country, including Tokyo’s Narita Airport.
    Here, you don’t book per night.
    You get exactly nine hours — that’s an hour to shower, seven to sleep and one to relax.
    Each of the pods has a panel, designed by Panasonic, which controls the lights and sound system. The alarm is designed to wake guests by gently by raising the lights.

    Capsule spas and whiskey bars

    Tokyo’s Women Centurion Cabin & Spa is, as the name suggests, for women only.
    Sleeping pods are spacious and chic and come equipped with a TV, tablets, humidifier and aroma diffuser.
    At the heart of the hotel is its spa, with sauna and hot tubs.
    It caters to the previously untapped market of businesswomen in need of some affordable accommodation.
    Twin hotel complex Green Plaza Shinjuku (men only) and Le Luck Spa (women only), located in the heart of Tokyo’s Shinjuku area, focuses on beauty and health treatments.
    With its saunas, outdoor baths, hot springs and variety of massages, it goes beyond the bare minimum.
    The rooms are spacious and nicely designed. There’s also a big napping room to unwind after a full day sightseeing.
    Spa & Capsule Hotel Grandpark Inn Kitasenju in Tokyo says it “caters for men” and aims to create a luxurious atmosphere for gentlemen.
    There’s a whiskey bar, business center and “onsen” sauna area.
    Reviewers say it’s targeted more at the Japanese market than international tourists.

    Capsules gaining new fans

    You could say now is the time of capsule hotel 2.0.
    And there’s no doubt that it’s starting to gain attention.
    On the same evening I stayed at First Cabin Tsukiji one of the people I met in the hotel bar was a guest who said he was a manager working for the Marriott hotel group.
    He stays in capsule hotels a couple of nights a week to observe the trend.
    “Normally, I stay in five-star hotels,” he said. “But I really like this. I’ll definitely be back.”

    Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/23/hotels/tokyo-luxury-capsule-hotels/index.html