Taiwan’s Gift and Souvenir Shop Lai Hao Arrives in Japan
05.February.2021 | FASHION
JAPAN POSTEC, a wholesaling company in Japan, is now an authorised dealer of products from the popular Taiwanese gift shop Lai Hao. The first product to enter the Japanese market from the company is a colourful collection of blotting papers which hit the country last Thursday (January 28).
Lai Hao Blotting Paper (8 Designs)
Taiwanese Scents: Oolong Tea / Gardenia / Yulan Magnolia / Hinoki / Pineapple
Size and Ingredients
Lai Hao’s products are a display of Taiwanese creativity and high quality and are sure to leave an impression on buyers.
The blotting paper designs are based around a variety of different foods, with eight different picks to choose from. Each one comes scented with fragrances that remind one of Taiwan.
Stylish Taiwanese Face Mask Brand JIUJIU Releases in Japan
26.February.2021 | FASHION
The popular Taiwanese face mask brand JIUJIU was released in Japan for the first time on Friday (February 26) via the company’s new Japanese website.
We now live in a time where face masks are a part of everyday life when commuting, going to the shop, walking in public places, working at the office, and so on. Japan is no stranger to face masks as they were always a part of the culture for hygienic reasons in the workplace when an employee is ill, as a fashion statement, for those suffering from hay fever, and so on, but even there has seen a major increased demand for face masks since the pandemic began.
JIUJIU’s face masks are used in medical professions in Taiwan. They are noted for not only they quality but fashion sentiment too, with over 60 style variations available. These masks are now available to buy in Japan in packs of 5.
JIUJIU Face Masks
Released: February 26, 2021 (Japan)
Price: Pack of 5 – ¥548 (Tax Included)
Online Store: https://jiujiu-jp.com/
Tokyo Banana Chooses Eevee as Next Pokémon Souvenir Sweet
Tokyo Banana World has revealed that its next sweet treat in its Pokémon Tokyo Banana series will be Eevee which Pokémon Trainers can expect to catch up and down Japan from January 2, 2021, including at the store itself as well as at 7-Eleven branches.
Pokémon Tokyo Banana Welcomes Eevee as Entry #2
Tokyo’s official souvenir sweets brand Tokyo Banana launched its new Pokémon Tokyo Banana series of confections in November with the first catch being Pikachu. Now Eevee is being added to the collection.
The fluffy sponge is a delicious caramel macchiato flavour and is filled with sweet banana custard cream. It can be eaten as it is, refrigerated, or even baked to create completely different flavour experiences.
6 Designs Including a Lucky Heart-Shaped Tail
The sponge cakes come in six different designs, all of which are adorable. The one to look out for though is the one with a cute heart-shaped tail.
Fluffy Eevee Design Packaging
Eevee Tokyo Banana Caramel Macchiato (Contains 2) | ¥291 (Tax Included)
The packaging features fluffy artwork of Eevee in six different designs, such as a waving Eevee and winking Eevee.
Where Can You Catch Eevee Tokyo Banana?
Eevee will roll out at 7-Eleven stores across Japan (excluding Okinawa) at the dates listed below. Each branch will have a limited stock so don’t miss out.
January 2, 2021 Release
January 16, 2021 Release
January 23, 2021 Release
January 30, 2021
©2021 Pokémon. ©1995-2021 Nintendo/Creatures Inc. /GAME FREAK inc.
Eevee Tokyo Banana
Rolling out from January 2, 2021
Official Website: https://tokyobanana.jp/products/banana_pokemon.html
HOSHINOYA Guguan Listed in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2020 Hot List
25.May.2020 | SPOT
HOSHINOYA Guguan in Taiwan was listed in the 2020 Hot List of Condé Nast Traveler on May 5, 2020.
Condé Nast Traveler is a travel magazine which showcases the latest information for travel, hotels, restaurants, and shopping around the world. HOSHINOYA Guguan was chosen as “The Best New Wellness Resorts in the World” in their 2020 Hot List which featured new hotels that opened in 34 countries and regions worldwide last year.
HOSHINOYA Guguan opened on June 30, 2019 as the first Taiwan-based luxury hot spring resort produced by Hoshino Resorts, which manages 42 branches outside Japan. It is also the second overseas branch of the company’s “HOSHINOYA” brand, whose concept is “taking a break from the modern world.” It’s located on the outskirts of Taichung in Guguan which is home to natural hot springs. There, it co-exists and blends in naturally with the landscape. All guest rooms have open-air baths, so guests can enjoy the warm water together with the breeze in a spacious environment. They also offer various programs for guests to enjoy Guguan’s culture and natural environment.
HOSHINOYA Guguan was also picked as one of Travel + Leisure’s “The Best New Hotels in the World (The It List)” on February 20.
If you’re planning a trip to Taiwan in the future, be sure to check out HOSHINOYA Guguan.
Address: No.16, Wenquan Lane, Section 1, Dongguan Road, Heping District, Taichung City 424, Taiwan
Rooms: 49 (All with open-air baths)
Check In: 15:00 / Check Out 12:00
Price: From NT$18,000 per night (1 room, doesn’t include tax or service charge, meals charged separately)
Official Website: https://www.hoshinoresorts.com/en/resortsandhotels/hoshinoya/guguan.html
Make Authentic Matcha at Home With the New Ippukubox Set
25.April.2020 | FOOD
TAKAHASHI KOGEI has launched a new matcha making set called the Ippukubox which comes with everything you need to make authentic Japanese matcha.
For many of us, our time indoors has increased. When taking a break from remote work we head to the kitchen to make ourselves a drink. We’ve all had those moments when we’re torn between making coffee, black tea, herbal tea, and so on. In those undecided moments, why not try making a cup of matcha instead?
The Ippukubox is a 15cm box which comes with all the necessary gear for making mathca: a chawan cup, chasen tea whisk, chashaku teaspoon, and a natsume tea caddy for preserving your matcha.
The inside of the box is lined with Echizen paper from Fukui Prefecture which not only makes it look beautiful, but protects your matcha tools from becoming damaged as a result of rubbing together.
Generally in Japan, when you think about making matcha, the traditional tea ceremony springs to mind which follows strict rules when it comes to making the drink. But the Ippukubox is made for personal use, and so you can add as much or as little matcha or hot water as you like, and practice making it even if you don’t know the proper techniques. You can even add hot milk to make a matcha latte and enjoy a tasty treat with it.
The chawan teacup is Echizen ware from Fukui and was made specially for the Ippukubox. Its cute size makes it fit perfectly in the palm of your hand, but it’s also spacious enough for using the whisk.
The outside design of the box is also made in such a way that it fits seamlessly into modern living and dining spaces. Each wooden box is handcrafted individually and is layered in a matte coating to protect the wood.
*This chawan teacup is different to the one included in the set
The lid of the box can even be used as a tray as pictured above to fit your drink and snack.
Release Date: May 15, 2020
Price: ¥13,000 (Before Tax)
Official Website: https://o-takahashikogei.com
*Please note that the Ippukubox does not come with matcha or snacks.
Ornament-Like Cake Parfaits Now Being Baked Up at Pascal Le Gac Tokyo in Akasaka
05.April.2020 | FOOD
Pascal Le Gac Tokyo is the first overseas branch of internationally-recognised French-based chocolate company Pascal Le Gac which released some breathtaking new desserts to its menu on Wednesday.
Chocolate Parfait Flurry / Phrase Parfait Flurry
The original Parfait Flurry desserts are made in the image of a bloomed flower. When they were released back in April 2019, they instantly garnered attention across social media and news websites for their gorgeous design. Pascal Le Gac Tokyo has brought them back to the menu, this time in the form of cakes.
Cakes that are like parfaits
The new desserts take the same concept of the original parfaits, but instead turns them into cakes. But that doesn’t simply mean taking the parfait ingredients as they are and turning them into a cake. Rather, the cakes recreate the taste of the parfaits, so it’s like eating the real thing. The wine glass that the parfaits were served in have been recreated using icing to give that shiny effect, and the chocolate flowers have been cut thin so they are easy to eat.
Chocolate Flurry – ¥864 (Tax Included)
Starting from the bottom upwards, the Chocolate Flurry is layered with chocolate cookie pieces, chocolate flavoured almond sponge, chocolate cream, chocolate mousse, cacao flavoured vanilla cream, more chocolate cream, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and chocolate glaçage. Every part of this art piece is made with cacao.
Phrase Flurry (Tax Included)
Starting from the bottom upwards, the Phrase Flurry is layered with pistachio cookie pieces, almond sponge, pistachio mousse, strawberry mousse, lychee jelly, strawberry compote, raspberry flavoured fresh cream, strawberry chocolate, and red glaçage. The marriage of strawberry, lychee, and pistachio flavours is nothing short of heavenly.
*Please note that opening hours and closures are subject to change depending on the situation of the coronavirus outbreak. Check the cafe’s official website for the latest details.
Pascal Le Gac Tokyo
Address: 2-12-13 Akasaka, Minato Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: [Weekdays] 10:00-20:00 (Last Orders 19:30) / [Weekends] 10:00-18:00 (Last Orders 17:30)
Access: 5-minutes on foot from Exit 2 of Akasaka Station (via Chiyoda Line) / 1-minute on foot from Exit 11 of Tameike-Sannō Station (via Ginza and Namboku Lines)
Official Website: http://www.legac-chocolatier.jp/
Tea & Chocolate Brownie Released by Dandelion Chocolate and IYEMON SALON ATELIER
18.March.2020 | FOOD
Dandelion Chocolate and IYEMON SALON ATELIER have joined sticky fingers to bake up their new “Tea & Cocoa Brownie” which is now being served at IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO and Dandelion Chocolate Kyoto Higashiyama Ichinenzaka.
This collaboration came about to celebrate 1 year since IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO opened. The chocolates fuse IYEMON SALON’s tea with Dandelion Chocolate’s organic, single origin bean to bar chocolate.
Tea & Cocoa Brownie (Uji Matcha/Houjicha) – ¥1,800 (Before Tax) *Contains 2 of each flavour
The two different flavoured brownies, Uji matcha and houjicha, are filled with a ganache made from Japanese tea and carefully selected chocolate from the Dominican Republic. The chocolate has a strong, rich flavour like that of coffee and cherries, but is still easy to get without it tasting overwhelming. The brownies are also vegan-friendly and gluten-free, containing no eggs, dairy products, wheat, or white sugar. They are the perfect accompaniment to both tea and a mild-tasting sake.
The vegan lifestyle is slowly gaining recognition in Japan, so don’t miss this chance to treat yourself to some melt-in-the-mouth vegan delights.
©Dandelion Chocolate Japan
IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO
Address: 481-1 Kiyoichō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto
Opening Hours: 8:00-23:00 (Course Last Orders 21:00 / Grand Menu & Drinks Last Orders 22:00)
Official Website: https://www.cafecompany.co.jp/brands/iyemonsalon/atelier-kyoto/
Dandelion Chocolate Kyoto Higashiyama Ichinenzaka
Address: 363-6 Masuyachō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto
Opening Hours: 10:00-19:00 (Last Orders 18:30)
Official Website: https://dandelionchocolate.jp/pages/shop-kyoto
Vegan Almond Caramel Sponge Cake Now Available at TOKYO BANANA in Tokyo Station
18.March.2020 | FOOD
TOKYO BANANA WORLD released a new vegan-friendly almond caramel flavour of its popular Tokyo Banana sponge cakeーthe official souvenir sweet of Tokyoーat the TOKYO BANANA store on the JR side of Tokyo Station on March 15, 2020.
This is TOKYO BANANA’s first vegan-friendly sweet. It’s made from 100% plant-based ingredients while keeping 100% of the product’s delicious flavour. That includes almond milk, which is promoted for its health and beauty benefits, and delicious caramel.
TOKYO BANANA Almond Caramel Sandwiches – Box of 4: ¥680 (Tax Included) / Box of 8: ¥1,200 (Tax Included)
Other ingredients include beat sugar, which is made from beetroot, a subtle banana flavour, and crunchy roasted almonds, all wrapped together in a bite-size sponge cake.
The product is both vegan and vegetarian friendly, containing no eggs or dairy products.
This tasty snack is available only at TOKYO BANANA in Tokyo Station, so be sure to pop buy and pick some up if you’re travelling through there.
Tokyo Banana Almond Caramel Sand
Released: March 15, 2020
Available: TOKYO BANANA (JR Tokyo Station)
Official Website: https://www.tokyobanana.jp/
Tokyo Station’s White Day Fair Loaded With Loving Gifts and Souvenirs
Tokyo Station’s two shopping centresーGRANSTA, which is inside the ticket gates, and GRANSTA Marunouchi, which is outside themーare holding a White Day Fair which started the day after Valentine’s Day and will run until March 14, 2020.
In Japan, Valentine’s Day usually sees girls and women giving chocolate to guys and men, which can be for both friendship or love. On White Day, the opposite happens, where guys and men are expected to repay the favour. GRANSTA and GRANSTA Marunouchi have the perfect assortment of gifts and accessories that are sure to please any girls this White Day.
Tasty treats to return the favour
These visually-appealing picks are perfect for expressing your thanks to friends and coworkers.
Tokyo Station Exclusive: Mini Pigeon & Heart Biscuits – ¥880 @ Fairycake Fair (GRANSTA Floor B1F) / Available: From February 15, 2020
These cute tiny tins from Fairycake Fair are packed with crunchy and milky pigeon and heart biscuits and mini lemon yoghurt-flavoured meringues. They’re a brand new product from the confectionery shop.
Tokyo Station Exclusive: Strawberry Pie Burger – ¥864 @ Kyobashi Senbikiya (GRANSTA Floor B1F) / Available: February 20, 2020 – March 14, 2020 (*30 served per day)
Adorably cut into love hearts, these pies are lovingly filled with cream, which has a subtle eggy flavour, and cream cheese
White Day Selection – ¥3,672 (Contains 9) @ Pierre Marcolini (GRANSTA Floor B1F) / Available: From March 1, 2020 while supplies last
An assortment of chocolates from popular chocolate brand Pierre Marcolini, named after the famous Belgian chocolatier, which is sure to make anyone happy. It includes a new chocolate called the “Gradation Cool.”
Impress with these little gems
Here’s a selection of gifts other than sweets that are great for those seeking something unique that no one else will buy.
Truffle Salt – ¥1,296 – @ DEAN & DELUCA (GRANSTA Floor B1F) / Available: Now on sale
This blended salt is a mix of summer truffle and natural sea salt. The absolute perfect gift for someone who loves cooking.
Dashi Stock – ¥1,080 @ Kayanoya (GRANSTA Marunouchi Floor B1F) / Available: Now on sale
An assortment of Kayanoya’s popular “Kayanoya Dashi” and their flavour-packed “Kiwami Dashi.” A great pick for those who want to return the favour with something out of the ordinary.
uka nail oil 13:00 – ¥3,300 @ FruitGATHERING (GRANSTA Floor B1F) / Available: Now on sale
Scented with refreshing mint and lemon and keeps your nails and skin nice and moist.
ecoffee cup-WILLIAM MORRIS – ¥2,310 Each @ Neue (GRANSTA Marunouchi Floor B1F) / Available: Now on sale
These beautifully stylish, textile-design cups are reusable, so you can take your coffee with you wherever and whenever.
Address: 1-9-1 Marunouchi, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo (JR Tokyo Station Floor B1F-1F / Inside Ticket Gates)
Opening Hours: 8:00-22:00 (Until 21:00 on Sundays and the final day of consecutive public holidays)
*Opening hours differ from store to store
*GRANSTA’s new area is open 9:00-22:00 (Until 21:00 on Sundays and the final day of consecutive public holidays)
Address: 1-9-1 Marunouchi, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo (JR Tokyo Station Floor B1F / Outside Ticket Gates)
Opening Hours: 10:00-22:00 (Until 21:00 on Sundays and the final day of consecutive public holidays)
*Opening hours differ from store to store
Tokyo Tokyo Official Souvenir Shop Opens in Haneda Airport
27.February.2020 | SPOT
Tokyo Toyko, a website that provides information on things to do in Japan’s capital, opened its own souvenir shop, called Tokyo Tokyo Official Souvenir Shop, in EDO KOJI on February 22, 2020, which is located on the fourth floor of Haneda Airport International Passenger Terminal.
As part of an effort to promote the appeals of Tokyo to the world, Tokyo Metropolis is carrying our PR work and branding with the catchphrase “Tokyo Tokyo Old meets New.”
Happy Daruma / Mamehapi
Edo Kimekomi Waving Cat
The “Tokyo Omiyage Seisaku Project” aims to develop products in collaboration with Tokyo Metropolis and local businesses with the “Tokyo Tokyo” brand. To date, 50 products (excluding colour variations) have been produced, from traditional crafts to stationery, food, and moreーall embodying the spirit of Tokyo.
The shop design features illustrations of Asakusa and Shibuya, two a symbols of Tokyo that have been around since the Edo Period and are and hub of traditional and contemporary Japanese culture respectively. The shop is also planning to hold workshops, where you can learn to make your own daruma and origami.
If you’re travelling to or from Haneda Airport, then be sure to pay a visit to Tokyo Tokyo Official Souvenir Shop where you can pick up souvenirs that combine traditional and contemporary culture.
Tokyo Tokyo Official Souvenir Shop
Location: EDO KOJI – Haneda Airport International Passenger Terminal (Floor 4F)
Address: 2-6-5 Hanedakuko, Ota Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 8:00-21:00 (Open all year round)
HOSHINOYA Guguan Chosen as Best New Hotel in the World by Travel + Leisure Magazine
26.February.2020 | SPOT
HOSHINOYA Guguan, a ryokan in Taiwan managed by Japanese ryokan operator Hoshino Resorts, was picked as one of Travel + Leisure’s “The Best New Hotels in the World (The It List)” on February 20, 2020.
Travel + Leisure is a New York-based travel magazine. “The Best New Hotels in the World (The It List)” shines a light on hotels around the world that have newly-opened or have been renovated that year.
HOSHINOYA Guguan opened on June 30, 2019 as the first Taiwan-based luxury hot spring resort produced by Hoshino Resorts, which manages 41 branches outside Japan. It is also the second overseas branch of the company’s “HOSHINOYA” brand, whose concept is “taking a break from the modern world.” It’s located on the outskirts of Taichung in Guguan which is home to natural hot springs. There, it co-exists and blends in naturally with the landscape. All guest rooms have open-air baths, so guests can enjoy the warm water together with the breeze in a spacious environment. They also offer various programs for guests to enjoy Guguan’s culture and natural environment.
If you’re planning a trip to Taichung, why not consider staying with HOSHINOYA Guguan?
Address: 424, Taiwan, Taichung City, Heping District, 東關路一段溫泉巷16號
TEL: 0570-073-066 (HOSHINOYA Booking Centre)
OIMON: The New Local Kagoshima Sweets Brand Established by BAKE
25.February.2020 | FOOD
Named “OIMON,” the brand will specialise in creating sweets made from local sweet potatoes, with the first branch opening at the new Gohobi Street zone inside Amu Plaza Kagoshima, a shopping complex connected directly to the JR side of Kagoshima-Chūō Station, on March 13, 2020.
What is OIMON?
OIMON is a new shop specialising in sweet potato confectionery whose concept is “Tradition x Innovation.” Its first branch is opening in Kagoshima, a prefecture that produces sweet potatoes and shochu from its warm climate. These traditional ingredients and methods will be combined with both Kagoshima’s contemporary food and food culture and BAKE Inc.’s design, flavours and preparation methods to create a new kind of local Kagoshima confectionery
Sweet potato cakes aplenty with Kagoshima flavour
Freshly-Baked Mini Mikan Sweet Potato Cake: Single Serving – ¥237 / Box of 5 – ¥1,188 / Box of 10 – ¥2,376 (Tax Included)
Freshly prepared in-store, you can pick from a single serving as well as a box of 5 or 10. The mini sweet potato cakes are inspired by gane, something taken from traditional Kagoshima cuisine. Gane refers to julienned sweet potatoes, but it also means “crab” in the Kagoshima dialect because the way it’s cut looks like a crab. The sliced sweet potatoes are wrapped and baked in a sweet potato paste to bite-size pieces.
The cakes are also soaked in caramel sauce, and their surface lathered in “Kosama Gin,” a craft gin made using lots of mikan oranges grown on Sakurajima in Kagoshima. Enjoy the delicious milky taste of the caramel coupled with the crunchy gane texture. The sweet potato paste is laced with powder made from the mikan oranges, adding a fresh and fruity flavour.
OIMON will promote Kagoshima to the rest of Japan
The brand colouring is a mix of beige and pink, reminiscent of Japanese sweet potatoes. OIMON went for a minimalist design to convey the simplicity of sweet potatoes. The logo is made up of round slices, also like round slices of sweet potato. The entire design conveys the fact that this is something from and exclusive to Kagoshima.
Grand Opening: March 13, 2020
Address: Amu Plaza Kagoshima Main Building 2F, 1-1 Chuocho, Kagoshima, Kagoshima Prefecture
Opening Hours: [Mon-Thurs] 10:00-20:30 / [Fri-Sun, Holidays & Day Before Holidays] 10:00-21:00
Official Website: https://oimon.jp
Disney Princess Inspired Cupcakes Released at Ginza Cozy Corner in Japan
22.February.2020 | FOOD
Disney princesses around the world won’t be able to resist the nine new cupcakes released at Ginza Cozy Corner last week in Japan.
The cupcake collection is being released to celebrate Hinamatsuri, a festival held annually in Japan on March 3, which prays for the well-being and healthy maturity of girls. The line-up can be enjoyed by child and adult Disney fans alike, and includes not only Disney princesses, but other female characters in the Disney cast. This includes Minnie Mouse, Belle, Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Jasmine, and more.
Disney Girl’s Collection (Contains 9) – ¥2,700 (Tax Included)
These cute cupcakes look like they have come straight out of a Disney character toy box. They not only look pretty, but sound delicious too, like the raspberry Minnie cupcake, lemon-flavoured Belle cake, cheesecake Cinderella, and more.
Celebrate Hinamatsuri in Disney-style by picking up a box of these cupcakes at Ginza Cozy Corner.
Disney Girl’s Collection (Contains 9)
Available: February 15, 2020 – March 3, 2020
Official Website: https://www.cozycorner.co.jp/