Interact with Animals and Watch a Traditional Performance at Tobu Zoo’s Autumn Night Event

28.August.2019 | SPOT

Tobu Zoo will be extending their opening hours on September 14, 15, 21 and 22 to 8pm to hold a special Autumn Night event.

 

Animal Dinner (A chance to feed the animals)

This is a wonderful opportunity to feed the penguins and elephants. 

 

Running: September 14, 15, 21 and 22

Penguin Dinner Time: From 5pm

Elephant Dinner Time: From 5:30pm 

Price: ¥500 per group  (maximum of 25 groups)

For both events above, the feeding time will end once 25 groups have participated. 

 

Animal Night Guide

This is a chance to learn about the lifestyles and fascinating features of each species directly from the team of zookeepers that raise them.

 

Running: September 14, 15, 21, 22 

Monkey World Jungle Night: From 6:10pm (lasts approx. 20 mins)

Lion Night: 7:20pm (lasts approx 10 mins) 

White Tiger Night: 7:30pm (lasts approx 10 mins) 

* The nighttime lion and white tiger guides will replace the daytime guides running from 2:30pm and 2:40pm respectively.

 

Traditional Theatre Performance of an Animal Ghost Story

The team of zookeepers has prepared and handmade a traditional Japanese Kamishibai theatre performance. Kamishibai is a form of Japanese street theatre and storytelling which was particularly popular during the 90s. Join the zookeepers on a quiet evening as they tell an old yet terrifying ghost story. Make sure to check out the zookeeper’s interesting costumes too. 

 

Running: September 15, 22

Times: From 7:00pm (approx. 20 mins long)

Location: Japanese Animal House (日本産動物舎)

 

Autumn Night ZOO Special Event: Penguin Bar

This bar is the perfect place to sip on your favourite spirits whilst enjoying the graceful view of penguins. You can also purchase merchandise here. Some of the merchandise has been designed with the inspiration of the penguins’ names and even their food. 

 

Open: September 14, 21

Opening Hours: 5:30pm ー 8:00pm (last orders: 7:30pm)

Location: Penguin Land 

 

There are so many exhibits and fun attractions running until 8pm. Enjoy a refreshing Autumn night at Tobu Zoo with your family and friends.

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  • Hippos Arrive Under Shibuya’s Inari Bridge as Part Of National Geographic Promotion

    21.August.2019 | SPOT

    The Hostile Planet documentary series by National Geographic is set to air in Japan from August 22. To celebrate the show’s airing, a promotional shoot will take place at Inari Bridge in Shibuya on August 24 and 25 where three hippos will make an appearance to help spread the word of how animals have had to adapt to the recent rapid changes in the environment in order to survive.

    A Tale Of Hippo Parents & Child, Living Off Grasslands, and Rapid Environmental Changes From the Seasons

    Dry seasons are becoming regular, where water is snatched away from the earth’s surface by the scorching sunlight. These are especially merciless seasons for hippos and a real threat to their survival. They cannot enter the water even for a brief moment. Their only options is to walk under the fire of the blazing sun. Their homes used to be packed full of watering holes, but now all they can do is embark on an aimless search. And the severity of this―the beating of the sun and lack of water―is becoming more and more of a problem.

    Three panel cutouts of hippos will be set up under Inari Bridge to tell a story of two parents and their child who who survived these harsh conditions by escaping from Katavi National Park in Tanzania and arriving in Shibuya, Tokyo.

  • P→★ (TEMPURA KIDZ) Animal Café Diary #1: Making Friends with Otters at HARRY Harajuku Terrace Café!

    24.January.2018 | FEATURES / SPOT

    I love animals!

     

    This is P→★ from TEMPURA KIDZ and welcome to the first entry of my brand new series. I’ll be updating occasionally. What’s a better way to start a series than to make friends with some otters and hedgehogs in Harajuku? Today, I went to HARRY Harajuku Terrace café to do just that!

     

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    It’s not just what’s inside the café, but its location is also worthy of note – it’s just an 8-minute walk from JR Harajuku station and a 5-minute walk from Tokyo Metro Meiji-Jingu station, so it’s easy to drop by after a busy day of being a tourist. The wow-factor of this café is the three very sociable otters. This highly successful café draws in customers that come day after day, seeking the ultimate soothing feeling of bonding with their new friends.

     

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    All their faces look the same, but you can tell them apart by looking at their tails. The otter called Miku has a thin tail, whereas San has a thick one and Kirara has a flat one. Particularly Kirara is brimming with curiosity and is the one with whom you are mostly likely to interact, if you should pop by!

     

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    Full of excitement, the otters reached through the small hole in the tank to ask for food and toys. It was overwhelmingly cute. When they want a treat, they call out with their peculiar squeal. You can purchase snacks for them within the café. If you give them food, your friendship will grow increasingly stronger.

     

    Otter snack prices:

    First-time customers: ¥330 (price including tax)

    Standard price: ¥540 (price including tax)

     

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    As the café name “HARRY” implies, the café has hedgehogs (harinezumi). The hedgehogs heal the tired hearts of all the café visitors. All the hedgehogs are friendly and rarely ever raise their quills at anyone, so you can touch them safely.

     

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    Even I can handle a hedgehog!

    Even though hedgehogs are rather timid, they can still open their hearts to you! I can’t believe that we even touched noses to communicate! It’s amazing!

     

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    The café was once a pet shop that sold rabbits and other small animals. This is it’s first time running business as a café, and that’s why you can not only interact with the animals here, but also buy one to keep. The staff also provide important information on how to properly care for the animals and diseases to which they are prone. If you are interested, then please feel free to ask them any kind of question.

     

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    There are many other animals in the shop. This is a large French Lop rabbit. 3 months after birth, their bodyweight can even reach up to 7kg. Their droopy ears were so cute and their fur was so fluffy! I was filled with happiness.

     

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    …and there were even chinchillas.  They have fluffy tails and look so cute!

     

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    I approached them with some grass for them to snack on, and as soon as they saw me, they ran at me full of energy – we even got a photo together! As all the animals at this café are used to people, it’s easy to take pictures with them to upload on SNS websites!

     

    The café has such a large variety of food for small animals that was quickly noticed by customers who were interested in buying a pet. You can ask the staff what type of food is appropriate for which animal.

     

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    I spent a lot of time surrounded by my favourite animals. I was particularly captured by the otters’ cute behaviour! HARRY Harajuku Terrace gives you the opportunity to freely interact with small animals – something that you can’t really do at a zoo or anywhere else. If you’re in Harajuku, how about stopping by? You may have to wait 30 minutes to enter the café if the store is closed. The café is very popular so I recommend that you reserve in advance!

     

    ■ Information

    HARRY Harajuku Terrace

    Address:Jingu-mae 426 Building floor 3, Jingu-mae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening hours:11:00-19:00 (Last entries: 18:30)

    Regular closing days: None

    Access:8-min walk from JR Harajuku station, 5-min walk from Meiji-jingu station Tokyo metro line

    URL:http://www.animalcafe.tokyo

     

    Model:P→★(TEMPURA KIDZ)@0830_pika 

    Writer:Ryoichi Komaba

    Photographer:Haruka Yamamoto

    Translator: Samantha Fernandes

  • P→★ Animal Café Diary #2: Making Friends with Owls & Hawks at Owl’s Garden in Harajuku

    01.August.2018 | FEATURES / SPOT

    P→★ from TEMPURA KIDZ loves animals. This is his featured series in which he visits animal cafés in the city.

     

    In this second entry, he made a trip to Owl’s Garden in Harajuku which houses not only owls, but hawks too!

    The café can be found behind Tokyu Plaza, a very favourable location since you can stop by after shopping in Harajuku. It’s a 6-minute walk from Harajuku Station or a 2-minute walk from Meiji-Jingumae Station. Today, P→★ is wearing an outfit inspired by Harry Potter!

    The café interior is styled on an English garden. There are 12 owls and hawks that live there. It’s full of natural light and greenery, making it a nice and comfortable place to relax.

    There are several price plans. The Standard Plan is ¥1,500 which gets you 60 minutes inside. During that time, you’re free to touch the birds, take photos of them and sit them on your arm as much as you like.

    P→★ met with the owls first. You can gently touch the top of their head down to their back as well as their chest. This owl is a Chaco Owl.

    If you want to hold the birds just ask the staff. You’ll be given a glove to wear for the bird to sit on.

    P→★ is now holding an American kestrel. This is the only falcon in the café. If you’re careful not to move your hand it will stay relaxed on your hand.

    This is a barn owl. Apparently lots of customers are captivated by its striking face.

    This one’s so fluffy!” commented P→★.

    P→★ was particularly interested in this Little Owl (that’s the actual name of the species!) Its tiny size is enough to tug your heartstrings♡

    Owls save energy and don’t move around much, so they’re perfect for snapping photos of. That goes for selfies too.

    Next is to try out being a falconer. There’s a number of cafés where you can come into contact with hawks but not that many where you can actually have one fly over to you, so some customers can spend several hours here.

    You begin with your back against the wall and bring your hand up to the same height as your shoulders at the count of 3.

    The hawk responded to the signal several meters way and flew right onto P→★’s hand.

     

    It costs ¥500 for one turn which consists of two flights.

    It’s like I’ve become a wizard!” The bird that flew to P→★ is the Harris’s hawk. They are known for their intelligence. Hawks are often perceived as scary but they’re actually very friendly to humans.

    You can enjoy a drink at this café while playing with the owls and hawks. If you make a reservation you get a drink on the house, otherwise it’s ¥100. It’s better to make a reservation if you’re planning to go there.

    The earrings they sell there are popular. They’re made from feathers that have fallen from the owls at the café. Be sure to find the feather of the bird you like there the most. They also sell a range of other merchandise including a photo collection of the owls.

    P→★ was very satisfied with his experience. It was his first time coming into contact with them, and his first time having a hawk fly to him.

     

    After watching Harry Potter, I wanted to own my own owl. It was a lot of fun interacting with them today. My image of hawks has changed too! If I’m rich in the future I want to have my own pet owl. Until then, I’ll be sure to come back here!

    P→★ sure enjoyed Owl’s Garden. The café is arranged in a way that makes it easy to take photos. The natural lighting and greenery make it a great choice for Instagram. Be sure to make a reservation if you’re interested.

     

    Check out the time P→★ went to Harajuku Terrace Café in his first Animal Diary Café entry here.

     

    ■Information

    Owl’s Garden

    Address: Ingresso 2F, 4-31-5 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 10:00am-7:00pm (Until 6:00pm on Tuesdays, Wednesday & Thursdays except on National Holidays)

    No Fixed Holidays.

    Access: 6-minutes on foot from Harajuku Station via JR / 2-minutes on foot from Meiji-Jingumae Station via Tokyo Metro

    Website:https://owls-garden.jp

     

    Model: P→★(TEMPURA KIDZ)@0830_pika

    Photo: Kayo Sekiguchi

    Text: Sayoko Ishii

    Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

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  • HAIKYU!! TO THE TOP Event to be Held in Collaboration With Tobu Zoo in Saitama

    21.July.2020 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    Japanese company arma bianca and Tobu Zoo have announced a special event in collaboration with HAIKYU!! TO THE TOP which will take place at Tobu Zoo from October 3 to December 27 this year.

     

    Fans who roll up to Tobu Zoo during this time will find illustrations dotted around featuring the characters of HAIKYU!! themselves visiting the zoo. Fans will also be able to get their hands on pre-sale merchandise of the characters in superdeformed mode, enjoy food inspired by the series, and more.

     

    Further details will be announced in the coming months in the lead up to the event, so watch this space.

     

    ©Haruichi Furudate / Shueisha・”HAIKYU!!” Production Committee・MBS

  • Universal Studios Japan’s ‘We are One’ Summer Festival Begins This July

    02.July.2020 | ANIME&GAME / MOVIE / SPOT

    Universal Studios Japan (USJ) reopened on June 19, 2020 after temporary closure as a result of COVID-19. The park is now running with strict measures in place to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, including practicing the 2m social distancing rule, making it mandatory to wear face masks, and so on. The park has posted a full video demonstration of the rules on their official website.

    That means summertime is set to shine on USJ once again this year. The new ‘Universal Summer Parade: We are One’ event will begin on July 23 as the first parade held by the park since its reopening. Guests will be able to enjoy a fun and exciting summer at USJ with all the necessary precautions in place to ensure their safety.

    Many familiar faces will gather at USJ to celebrate summer with guests, including the Minions, Elmo, Snoopy, Hello Kitty, and more. Each of them will board colourful floats for the parade during the parade, which will open with the fittingly-titled “Opening Float” followed by a flurry of unique floats like the flashy “Latin Float,” cute European-inspired “Europe Float,” the mysterious “Indian Float,” and the finale “America Float,” amongst many others. There will be music to entertain guests for laughs, smiles, and fun energy while characters and entertainers ride the floats and serve summertime vibes.

     

    The peak moment of the parade will be when confetti rains down on guests in huge quantities. Flags can also be bought for the parade for the first time in this year. Performers and the park characters will be able to entertain guests at a distance while still connecting with them through the fun performances. A special “social distance” performance created in cooperation with the Osaka Prefectural Board of Education will also be part of the parade. This year’s parade plans to have guests dancing and smiling even more than previous years to lift some of that stress away and give them the fight and energy to continue into tomorrow.

     

    Universal Summer Parade: We Are One

    Put your hands into the air as the sun beats down and the floats arrive to a lively rhythm. ‘We are One’ is the catchphrase, so get your boogie on and explode with excitement together with the entertainers and park characters for a heated summer parade!

     

    Running: July 23, 2020 – August 27, 2020

    Location: Parade Route

    Time: One per day from 11:00am (approx 40 mins) 

    Buy yourself a parade flag for ¥500 and wave it around to the beat of the festival!

     

    Cool yourself off with some summer merch

    Get your hands on some merch for cooling off, including the must-have summer “Handy Fan,” a “UV Poncho” which keeps you cool in the heat of the sun, a classic “Sensu” folding fan, and more.

     

    Feel the Japanese festivities with the Universal Market

    The Universal Market will give that Japanese ‘matsuri’ festival vibe. Enjoy some cool desserts, spicy food, and more.

    Left: Super Hot! Turkey Leg ¥1,000 / Centre: Peach Jelly Soda: ¥650 / Right: Frappe Sundae ~Strawberry & Blue Hawaii~ ¥750

    Since guest safety is the number one priority this summer, the park will not be holding its famous splash performance where guests are soaked with water by water shooters.

     

    Additionally, the parade will also not stop in any of the usual designated places and will instead keep on moving, meaning the parade can be enjoyed from anywhere along the parade route. Guests will be able to keep plenty of distance from others as they watch the parade.

     

    The park also released a statement on its ‘enhanced sanitation in park operations’ on its official website so you can find out more about what USJ is doing to tackle the COVID-19 spread.

     

    If you’re in Osaka this year, you can still enjoy summer at Universal Studios Japan with all the necessary precautions in place.

  • Raise Your Own Sky Lantern at New Greenpia Tsunan in Niigata

    25.February.2020 | SPOT

    New Greenpia Tsunan, a resort facility in Tsunan, Niigata, is holding an exciting sky lantern event every day until March 31, 2020.

     

    The sky lantern event is held every winter at New Greenpia Tsunan, and has returned again for 2020. It began in 2012 as a means of showing respect for and praying for the revival of disaster-stricken areas, such as the areas affected by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, the Nagano and Niigata earthquake, and so on. Every year, couples and families come together to put their prayers and wishes into the lanterns before letting them go into the night sky. The countless lanterns raised at once soar up high and light up the black cloak of the night like burning stars.

    For 2020, the event will also sell lantern t-shirts, handkerchiefs, hand towels, cookies, and other themed items.

     

    If you’re travelling in or around Niigata in Japan this year, then don’t miss New Greenpia Tsunan’s very special winter event.

  • Go On A Wild Adventure with Tama and Friends at Tobu Zoo

    05.February.2020 | Uncategorized

     Tobu Zoo is collaborating with Tama and Friends – a popular anime series which premiered on January 9, 2020 on a number of channels including Fuji TV’s programming block Noitamina. The collaboration includes a limited event which will run from February 1 to April 5, 2020.

    Original Illustrations

    The collaboration includes a number of original illustrations of adorable chibi versions of the characters with animals created specifically for the collaboration project. The illustrations will be fixed into area panels across the zoo.

    Original Merchandise

    Explore the zoo-limited merchandise decorated with original illustrations. Spend more than ¥3,000 (After Tax) at the Little Cabin for a chibi design badge. (Comes in 10 designs, one will be presented at random to the customer.)
    Purchase Point: Little Cabin, located in the park. 

    Collaboration Game: Candy Toss 

    Head over to Tobu Zoo’s games corner Rainbow Town and challenge yourself to a game of Candy Toss to win an original prize.

    ¥300 Per Go (After Tax) 

     

    Collaboration Food 

    Order from the collaboration menu to receive an original drink coaster.

    Tama and Friends Churros: ¥500 (After Tax)

    Tama and Friends Tsubu Tsubu Float: ¥600 

    Sold At: Snack Stations around the Leisure Park

    Enjoy a fun day out at Tobu Zoo exploring the rides at the leisure park and then an exciting wander around the zoo.

    Character Voice Recordings 

    Tobu Zoo-exclusive voice recordings by the original voice cast of Tama and Friends can also be heard around the park.

     

    Park Announcements
    ①All areas around the park

    Characters: Pochi Yamada, Nora
    Start Times: 10:10/11:10/12:10/13:10/14:10/15:10/16:10

    ②Ferris Wheel Emma’s Cheese Windmill: Inside each gondola

    Character: Tama Okamoto

    Announcement Times: During operation (Plays once per ride.)

    Ride Price: ¥600 per person/6 ride tokens/ One-Day Ride Passes accepted

    For safety reasons, the ride will be closed temporarily from time to time for maintenance checks and during strong winds. 

     

    Enjoy a thrilling day out at with Tama and Friends at Tobu Zoo.

  • 5 Must-Visit Beautiful and Romantic Lantern Festivals in Japan | 2020 Edition

    02.February.2020 | SPOT

    The season for Japan’s enchanting and romantic lantern events has finally arrived, and the line-up this year is diverse, from events where lanterns are the main attraction to lantern-lined festivals and Japanese matsuri festivals.

     

    Hankyu Travel International compiled a list of these events , and we’ve pulled out some of the best ones for you.

     

    Hanamaki Hoshi Meguri no Yoru | Iwate Prefecture

    This year marks the third run of “Hanamaki Hoshi Meguri no Yoru,” an event held during winter for guests staying at Hanamaki Onsen. The event is comprised of many elements, including fireworks, folk entertainment, and more. People will also write wishes and messages or draw pictures on their lanterns before sending them up into the winter night sky. Afterwards, they can enjoy a dip in the hot springs at Hanamaki Onsen to warm themselves up and unwind from the day.

     

    Running: January 26, 2020/February 22, 2020/February 11, 2020/February 16, 2020/February 24, 2020

    Location: Namari Ski Center
    Address: Nakadaira-36-1 Namari, Hanamaki, Iwate

     

    ▼Hanamaki Hoshi Meguri no Yoru Tour
    https://www.hankyu-travel.com/kokunai/keyword/%E3%81%AF%E3%81%AA%E3%81%BE%E3%81%8D%E6%98%9F%E3%82%81%E3%81%90%E3%82%8A%E3%81%AE%E5%A4%9C/?p_baitai=9599

     

     

    China Lantern Festival | Chiba Prefecture

    Tokyo German Village is hosting its second China Lantern Festival, inspired by the typical traditional festivals held in China during spring. A selection of 30 lantern installations of varying sizes made by the world’s biggest lantern maker Lantern Group have been set up in the 50,000 square meter area. Pieces include lanterns over 10 meters long and high, lanterns floating on the water, moving lanterns, and more.

     

    Running: November 23, 2019 – April 5, 2020

    Location: Tokyo German Village

    Address: 419 Nagayoshi, Sodegaura, Chiba

     

    ▼Tokyo German Village Tour
    https://www.hankyu-travel.com/kokunai/keyword/%E6%9D%B1%E4%BA%AC%E3%83%89%E3%82%A4%E3%83%84%E6%9D%91/?p_baitai=9599

     

     

    Tsunan Yuki Matsuri | Niigata Prefecture

    Since 2012, the people of Tsunan in Niigata have raised sky lanterns into the sky to pray for the revival from the disaster that the Tohoku earthquake brought in 2011. It is a two-day festival, with the first day of the event taking place at night, and the second being the main day of the festival. The festival is so popular that tickets never fail to sell out quickly every year. It brings with it a host of events, from the lanterns to the snowboard straight jumping tournament, the hanging of snow lanterns, snowmobile rides, and more.

     

    Running: March 14, 2020 (There will also be a lantern event the night before on March 13, 2020)

    Location: New Greenpia Tsunan

    Address: 12300 Akinari, Tsunan, Nakauonuma-gun, Niigata

     

    ▼Niigata Tsunan Sky Lantern Festival Tour
    https://www.hankyu-travel.com/chubu-hokuriku/niigata/lantern/?p_baitai=9599

     

     

    Nagasaki Lantern Festival | Nagasaki Prefecture

    This festival was originally held during the Chinese New year by the people of Nagasaki Chinatown, but in 1994 it was given the name “Nagasaki Lantern Festival.” To date, it has been attended by over 1 million people. This year, around 15,000 lanterns of varying sizes are set to light the streets. Taking place across several areas, some standout pieces include the peach-coloured lanterns at Nagasaki Chinatown, the ceiling lanterns at Hamanomachi Arcade, the water lanterns at Nagashimagawa Park, and more. On weekends, there are also parades, traditional Chinese performance, and other exciting events. And if you head to Nagasaki Confucian Shrine (also known as Koshi-byo), you can offer a love lantern to pray for happiness in your relationship.

     

    Running: January 24, 2020 – February 9, 2020
    Locations: Nagasaki Chinatown/Central Park/Tojin Yashiki/and elsewhere
    Address: Various places throughout the city of Nagasaki

     

    ▼Nagasaki Lantern Festival

    Hankyu Travel International Tour: Hankyu Travel International

    Nagasaki Tourism Page: https://travel.at-nagasaki.jp/en/what-to-see/62/

     

    Ryukyu Lantern Festival 2019-2020 | Okinawa Prefecture

    Murasaki Mura Ryukyu Kingdom Theme Park is known for having originally been used as the set for several historical drama series, and was subsequently turned into a theme park after filming was finished. The Ryukyu Lantern Festival welcomes a variety of different lanterns, including Chinese lanterns, paper lanterns, various Asian lanterns, and more, each of which bring a completely different atmosphere depending on the area you are in. This year sees the welcome return of the annual lantern contest where 45 individual lantern pieces are exhibited. There are also different street performances every day on the Night Lantern Stage, as well as projection mapping displays, the Night Lantern Cafe, and more.

     

    Running: December 1, 2019 – March 31, 2020

    Location: Murasaki Mura Ryukyu Kingdom Theme Park

    Address: 1020-1 Takashiho, Yomitan, Nakagami-gun, Okinawa

    Murasaki Mura Official Website: https://murasakimura.com/

     

     

    Be part of one of Japan’s many beautiful lantern festivals this year and witness some seriously breathtaking night scenes.

  • Celebrate Tokyo Midtown’s Cherry Blossoms at MIDTOWN BLOSSOM 2020 Event

    24.January.2020 | SPOT

    MIDTOWN BLOSSOM 2020 is set to take place in Tokyo Midtown from March 20 to April 19 to celebrate and welcome the spring and the cherry blossoms.

     

    This marks the 13th year of the event, which will take place both in Tokyo Midtown’s garden area which is home to rows of gorgeous cherry trees, as well as around the building where they have sparkling wine, sweets, flower displays, and many other exciting things planned.

     

    CHANDON Blossom Lounge

    Enjoy a luxurious cherry blossom experience this year with a glass of premium Chandon sparkling wine available at the outdoor limited-time CHANDON Blossom Lounge. This vibrant sparkling rosé wine is the perfect accompaniment to your springtime banquet and to say “Cheers!” to this year’s hanami flower-viewing in Japan.

     

    There will also be food prepared by Nagase Mitsunao, head banquet chef at the 5-star Ritz-Carlton Tokyo Hotel, as well as incredibly decorative-looking sweets to adorn the able. There are two new types of seats available this year with Japanese twists to them, including seats in the roofed lounge where you can enjoy the cool spring weather in the evening.

     

    Running: March 20, 2020 – April 19, 2020 (Closed in the case of stormy weather)

    Time: 12:00-20:00 (Last Orders 19:30) *Extended to 21:00 (Last Orders 20:30) on Fridays, Saturdays and during cherry blossom full bloom

    Location: Midtown Garden, Sakura-dori area

    *Select seats require a reservation – full details to be released in mid-February

     

    Spring Flower Display ~Flower Art Award pre~

     

    Za Sogetsu is a performance unit specialising in ikebana, or flower arrangement. One of the most recognised groups in the industry, their work will displayed around various locations at Tokyo Midtown, including large-scale pieces as well as never-before-scene ones. One look at this breathtaking flower art will be enough to fill you with spring vibes.

     

    Running: March 20, 2020 – April 19, 2020

    Time: 9:30-24:00 (Galleria Floor 1F) / 11:00-21:00 (Galleria Floors 2F-3F)

    Location: Galleria 1F’s Tree Shower & various locations at Galleria 2F-3F

     

     

    Nighttime Cherry Blossom Light-Up

    The entire 200-meter length of cherry trees in Tokyo Midtown’s garden area will be lit up with beautiful illuminations at night-a sight that never fails to drawn in countless people. Before the flowers are in full bloom, pink lights will be used to get people ready for the main show. When the cherry blossoms are at their height, white lights will be used every night.

     

    Running: March 20, 2020 – April 19, 2020

    Time: 17:00-23:00

    Location: Midtown Garden, Sakura-dori area/In front of Garden Terrace

     

    Tokyo Midtown has many other events planned for spring 2020, so don’t miss out this year.

  • FLOWERS BY NAKED 2020: Details Revealed For Tokyo’s Flower-Themed Art Event

    18.December.2019 | SPOT

    FLOWERS BY NAKED is an annual flower-themed art event held by NAKED Inc., and the company has announced its next run: FLOWERS BY NAKED 2020 – Sakura – will take place from January 30 to March 1 next year at Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall in Tokyo, where visitors can enjoy flowers an a wholly new kind of interactive experience. Tickets went on sale on December 17, 2019, and this event will mark its 5th anniversary of taking place in Nihonbashi.

     

    To date, FLOWERS BY NAKED has seen over 500,000 people attend the events, which have become a place for Instagrammable photos with over 660,000 posts made with the hashtag #flowersbynaked.

     

    2020’s theme is cherry blossoms, so to celebrate, NAKED has unveiled four key visuals for four gardens set for the event along descriptions. As visitors journey through the gardens, they will experience an immersive story melding the worlds of flowers and art.

    ■Prologue

    “When a butterfly telling the spring dances in the snowy winter world, the page is turned and the world changes from winter to spring.”

     

    This is where the story begins: where winter flowers bloom. But as the pages of the big book are turned, the space is transformed into springtime as the snow melts.

    ■Dandelion Hill

    “When you blow dandelion as if you were playing as a child, the fluff soars up to the sky with your old memories.”

     

    Watch as the scenery changes when you blow on the towering dandelions in this incredible interactive experience that combines real life with digital technology.

    ■Glowing Garden

    “In a shimmering space that seems to be lost in a kaleidoscope by a mirror, the sun shines even more.”

     

    When you step into this radiant garden which is lit by the pouring sunlight, it will seem as if the entire world around you glows with the fiery light of our burning star.

    ■OUSAI Garden

    “The fastest cherry blossom viewing space in Japan where you can enjoy the five senses, such as the blossoming cherry blossoms and the scent of spring.”

     

    The river seen at the beginning of the story leads to here, a holy cherry blossom garden watched over by an enormous pink cherry tree. There is plenty to interact with in this area for visitors to experience cherry blossoms with all five of their senses.

     

    Advance tickets for this event are now on sale, so don’t miss out.

  • 4 Best Winter Illumination Events in Japan | 2019 Edition

    04.November.2019 | FEATURES / SPOT

    Winter is almost here, which means the wintertime illuminations are set to warm the streets of Japan once again this year with their radiance. Here are 4 must-visit illuminations taking place in and around Tokyo this year.

     

    Meguro River Minna no Illumination 2019 in Nakameguro

    This year, Meguro River will be decorated with an unmissable illumination display to warm the heart. What’s more is that 100% of the energy for the illumination will be produced by recycled oil.

     

    As Shinagawa will also be lit up at the same time, visitors will be able to treat themselves to a glorious view of 410,000 cherry blossom-coloured lights. The beautiful illuminations along the riverbank of Meguro River will also be the largest illumination project along the Yamanote Line with a total length of 2.2km of riverbanks covered (counting both sides of the river).

    Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/266636

     

    ▼Meguro River Minna no Illumination 2019

    Locations: Gotanda Fureai Mizube Hiroba (2 Chome-9-11 Higashigotanda, Shinagawa City, Tokyo)

    Gotanda Minami Park and Meguro Riverside (2 Chome-8-8 Higashigotanda, Shinagawa City, Tokyo)

    Running: November 8, 2019 – January 1, 2020

    Times: 17:00 – 22:00 

    *The illumination project will still run in rainy weather but will be postponed in stormy weather.

    Website: http://www.minna-no-illumi.com/ 

     

     

    Tobu Zoo Winter Illuminations 2019-2020

    The “Illumination Show” will make use of the biggest LED display in Japan’s Kanto region, combining music with CG visuals, and illuminated decorations will twinkle in front of it. This year, the display will also feature new full-colour lasers. Three magical and dynamic shows will light up the area, including the Amatsuki Live Illumination show.

    Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/260368

     

    Tobu Zoo Winter Illuminations 2019-2020

    Running: October 26, 2019 – February 11, 2020

    *Open on weekends and public holidays in November including Saitama Day on November 14, 2019

    *Open every day from December 1, 2019 to January 5, 2020

    *Open on weekends and public holidays only from January 6, 2020

    Opening Hours: 17:00-20:00 (Until 21:00 on December 24-25, 2019)

    Location: Throughout Tobu Zoo (110 Suka, Miyashiro, Minamisaitama-gun, Saitama)

    Price: Please check the official website or at the zoo

    Event Page: http://www.tobuzoo.com/event/teiki/illumination/

     

     

    Roof Star Garden at GINZA SIX

    Ginza’s biggest shopping centre GINZA SIX is set set to light up its rooftop garden with an enchanting illumination event titled Rooftop Star Garden. Standing at 56 meters high, the rooftop garden is the “closest place to the stars” in Ginza. This will be GINZA SIX’s first ever illumination event and it will shine a bright spotlight against the nightscape of Ginza’s streets.

    Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/259779

     

    Rooftop Star Garden

    Location: GINZA SIX Garden (Building Rooftop)

    Address: 6-10-1 Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo

    Running: November 26, 2019 – February 24, 2019

    *Will close during bad weather or during invitation-only events

    Time: Sunset to 23:00

    Entry: Free

    GINZA SIX Official Website: https://ginza6.tokyo/

     

     

    Omotesando Hills Christmas 2019

    This winter’s lights at Omotesando Hills will be provided with contemporary design studio we+.The illuminations at the main large staircase of the atrium will take on the theme “Christmastime seduced by water magic.” “The water-based illuminations will constantly change colour and appearance.

    Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/255660

     

    Omotesando Hills Christmas 2019

    Running: November 13, 2019 – December 25, 2019

    Illumination Time: 11:00-23:00

    Omotesando Hills Official Website: https://www.omotesandohills.com/en/

     

     

    Did you enjoy our picks? Seeing the illuminations is a must when travelling to Japan during wintertime. Choose your location and take your friends, family and loved ones.

  • Details Drop On Netflix Anime Series Beastars’ Promotional Event Taking Place at Tobu Zoo

    28.October.2019 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    Tobu Zoo is set to collaborate with the ongoing anime series Beastars from November 2 to December 29. New exciting details have unfolded for the event so fans can see what they have to look forward to.

     

    Original Superdeformed Illustrations

    Illustrations of the anime’s character cast in their superdeformed modes and boarding park attractions will appear around the Tobu Zoo. You’ll also spot them on a panel at the park’s Little Cabin shop.

     

    Original Merchandise

    A new and exclusive line of merchandise featuring original illustrations will be sold at Little Cabin, as well as other BEASTARS-related goodies.

    During the event, fans will randomly receive one of the above-pictured stickers for every ¥2,000 they spend on BEASTARS merch.

     

    Themed Food

    If you’ve read the manga series, you’ll know that Legoshi likes Legom’s egg sandwiches. Now fans can see what all the fuss is about too! You can pick one up for ¥500 at the kitchen car set up at Cat World.

    If fans order a sandwich, they’ll receive one of the above-pictured post cards.

    The zoo will also sell BEASTARS churros, a staple at any theme park.

    Get a churro at Snack Station for ¥500 and get one of six possible postcards too.

     

    Character Announcements

    The voice actors for Legoshi, Haru and Jack have also recorded special announcements which you’ll be able to hear throughout the zoo. These will be played at the following designated times: 10:10~/11:10~/12:10~/13:10~/14:10~.

     

    Collaboration With “Butai Meguri” App

    By using the popular app “Butai Meguri,” you can use the GPS function or read one of the the QR codes on panels placed around the zoo to take photos with characters and listen to explanations of animals by the characters. Those are as follows: 

     

    Legoshi (Chikahiro Kobayashi) x White Tiger

    Haru (Sayaka Senbongi) x African Elephant & Giraffe

    Louis (Yūki Ono) x Lion

    Juno (Atsumi Tanezaki) x Brown Bear

    Jack (Junya Enoki) x Hippopotamus

     

     

    Voice Cast Talk

    A talk will be held on November 16 by five members of the voice cast: Chikahiro Kobayashi (who voices Legoshi), Junya Enoki (Jack), Takeo Ōtsuka (Collot), Naoto Kobayashi (Durham), and Yoshiyuki Shimozuma (Voss). They will talk about the event and the BEASTARS anime series.

     

    ©Paru Itagaki (Akita Shoen) / BEASTARS Production Committee

  • Wear Plain Clothes This Halloween at Shibuya’s Jimi Halloween 2019 Event

    13.October.2019 | FASHION

    Worried about what to wear for Halloween this year? No need to panic. If you’re spending your Halloween in Shibuya this year, which is known the world over for its incredible Halloween festivities, then head to Tokyo Culture Culture on October 27 where a very unique event is taking place.

    Jimi Halloween is an event that takes out the stress of having to go all out for Halloween as people go dressed as ordinary people. It has been held annually since 2014, with the number of attendees growing each year. Over 800 people took part last year, all clad in their plain clothes.

     

    This year’s event will be split into three slots, with a capacity of 200 people per slot. Sign-ups begin on October 15 at 12:00pm (JST).

     

     

    Past Examples

    ①Situational attire

    Beauty salon client

    Dressing up as someone doing something has been a popular choice at the event recently. You can come up with some creative ideas that’ll make people say, “You came as that?!”

     

    ②”I’ve seen people like that!” attire

    Flea market woman

    There’s always certain types of people that everyone sees, and in Japan this is one of them!

     

    ③”I get it, but I don’t get it” attire

    Hawaii vibe  uncle

    You’ve heard all about them, but have you seen them?

     

    ④Work attire

    Handing out tissues with pachinko ads on them

    Work attire is a go-to at the plain clothes event. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this is the one that started the entire movement.

     

    ⑤Miscellaneous attire

    Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

    The final entry is those which are hard to categorise. They serve whatever vibes they are feeling.

     

    Attend this year’s event and show off your own unique ideas!

  • 2019 Kobe Luminarie Winter Illuminations to Light Up Kobe This December

    09.October.2019 | SPOT

    The 25th Kobe Luminarie light festival will take place from December 6 to 15. The theme of this year’s festival is “25 Years, Guided by the Light of Hope” (Original Italian title: Da 25 anni, guidati dalle luci della speranza).

    Kobe Luminarie is an illumination festival that has been held annually since 1995 in commemoration of the Great Hanshin earthquake which hit Kobe that year on January 17. The event has continued as a symbol of hope for Kobe and has also become a festival associated with the winter season. Last year’s festival saw around 3.43 million people in attendance.

    The “Light Bulbs” make a comeback radiating their warm light

    Formerly the doorstep to foreign culture, Nakamachi-dori, lined with countless tasteful stores, will be lined with around 270 meters’ worth of decorations. The entrance decoration, named Frontone, stands almost 22 meters tall with three towering gates each connected to each other. The Sparri Ara is a wide wall of lights which runs 50 meters from Frontone all the way to Kyomachisuji Crossing. And as a special instalment to the 25th run of the festival, the light bulbs used at the first festival will be strung up to create another wall illumination from Itomachi to the East block which will be dubbed the “Memorial Zone.”

    The event’s largest light dome

    In the eastern amusement park plaza, Cassa Armonica―an illuminated church structure set up every year―will be enveloped in a large 21 meter high dome featuring an arch for the first time standing 4 meters tall in the memorial area

     

    Over in the floral clock area, the Sparri Ara wall lights twinkle beside the wisteria trees. The lights will change and transform to the sound of the music. Attendees will also be able to pick up small gifts too as well as take pictures at the various photo spots.

     

    Earthquake Talk Booth

    Talks will be held discussing the origins of Kobe Luminarie and why it started. Earthquake survivors will also talk about their real experiences.

    International Creative Director and Executive Producer Daniel Monteverde, who has been working with Luminaire for 20 years, made the following comment: “The city of Kobe will bustle once again this year, which will mark 25 years. People will fill the streets and look to the sky while they wait for the chime of the bell to signal the illuminations. We hold the memories of the people we lost 25 years ago close to our hearts. I hope we can convey our hopes and dreams and our story to our children and the young people who will bear the next generation. I hope people will be proud of Kobe which has recovered from the earthquake.”

     

    He continues: “The Kobe Luminarie lights will shine once more for Hyogo, for Japan, and for the world. These lights are a symbol of each and every person’s devotion, their efforts, and their love. I pray that the Luminarie lights will send a message of hope to the world and continue shining in our hearts for the rest of time.” * Full comment translated from Japanese

  • New York-Style Cafe & Restaurant Sarabeth’s Celebrates 7 Years in Japan With Special Event in Shinjuku

    04.October.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    It has been seven years since Sarabeth Levine took her New York-based cafe and restaurant Sarabeth’s to Japan back in 2012. To celebrate, the establishment will hold a special one-night event with a commemorative menu.

    “Fermented Foods” is the theme of the event, which will see an incredible line-up of premium dishes. There will also be a talk by Sarabeth Levine herself who will be in attendance.

    The menu line-up features a range of healthy fermented foods, like pancakes and Eggs Benedict, while drinks options include lemonade with fermented syrup, goishicha tea from Aichi Prefecture, and more. There will also be Sarabeth cookies which you can take home with you.

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