【Tokyo Stroll】Step into the Showa area at Uenosakuragi Atari, Yanesen. Introducing Kabaya Bakery & Yanaka Beer Hall.
The essence of the Showa era lingers in the district of Yanesen. In the nearby residential area called “Uenosakuragi”, a new tourist spot by the name of “Uenosakuragi Atari” has been born. Model Saki Shibata pays a visit and expresses her love for the area, as the real authentic essence of Japan can be felt here. Today, we’re joining Saki-chan as she takes a stroll around the elegant and old Japanese-style neighbourhood.
A living space you can share
After a short walk from Yanesen, we stumbled upon the residential area “Uenosakuragi Atari”, where a residential complex that was built 80 years ago had been refurbished. Many institutions sit snug in the complex, including a beer hall, bakery, salt and olive stores, rental spaces and much more.
Uenosakuragi Atari is only a 10-minute walk from JR Nippori station, JR Ueno station, Tokyo Metro Nezu station and Sendagi station. You can also get there quickly from Shibuya station and Harajuku station!
These three buildings were once used as a place of residence and was built in the 13th year of the Showa era. Whilst the outside retains its authentic appearance from the past, the inside has been renovated. Looking at the outside of the building, you would see a building from long ago. As you inspect the shops, each step you take reveals the extent of its beauty.
When the council stumbled upon the old building, they pondered over whether it should be turned into a new car park, or whether it should serve as a new apartment complex. At that moment, the idea of renovating it came to mind. This is how the renovation came to be.
From children to the elderly, people join together here to enjoy the neighbourhood. Uenosakuragi was created as a place where one can live in harmony with others.
The bakery locals love
The love for Kayaba Bakery spreads not just amongst the tourists, but also the locals. This is the bakery of the famous coffee shop Yanaka Coffee.
The wheat used to make the bread is grown in Japan. Enjoy the soft and springy texture of this cutely-shaped bread – all of them look so delicious! The variety looked so good that Saki-chan took ages to decide which one to buy!
Small breads and small prices – that’s why we recommend you to buy lots and try lots! Look at Saki-chan, sat on a bench outside, stuffing her cheeks with the store’s popular “Jyagapan” (potato bread). The scent of rosemary from the bread wafting through the air will definitely catch you off guard.
Breakfast, lunch or a quick snack – if you’re peckish and looking for a petit treat, this sweat bread is perfect!
Cow Brand Soap x BEAMS Japan Take Over Kotobukiyu Bath House in Tokyo
BEAMS Japan and Cow Brand Soap have teamed up to an event titled Sento no Susume 2021 which began on April 23. As part of the event, the two brands have come together at the popular Tokyo-based bath house Kotobukiyu where illustrations for the collaboration drawn by manga artist Mari Yamazaki (Thermae Romae, Olympia Kyklos) has been put up on the outside, inside, and along the walls.
See the illustrations being plastered in the video below.
At the bath house entrance, along the walls, and everywhere else
Fashion shoots are being held at the bath house
Limited-edition merchandise for Sento no Susume 2021
For many years, sento public bath houses have been big part of Japanese culture and are located up and down the country. They are places people go to unwind, relax, and destress. However, with times changing, they are because less part of people’s lives, and the facilities themselves are seeing significant wear and tear as well as not having successors to take over the businesses. Sento no Susume aims to revitalise sento and raise their cultural value once again by showing how they can be enjoyed. The first event was held in January and February in 2019.
This year will be the second hosting of the event and invites manga artist Mari Yamazaki on board who has given Kotobukiyu a makeover with her iconic artwork themed on exercise and bathing. Six sports are featured in her drawings for the bath house including basketball, climbing, javelin, surfing, judo, and volleyball.
Have you experienced a Japanese sento before?
Sento no Susume 2021
Running: April 23, 2021 – September 15, 2021
Address: 5-4-17 Ueno, Taito-ku, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 11:00-01:30 (Last Entries 01:05)
Closed: 3rd Thursday of every month
Official Website: http://www7.plala.or.jp/iiyudana/
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Collaboration Launching to Promote Manga’s Upcoming Live-Action Films
In promotion of the forthcoming live-action films Rurouni Kenshin: The Final and Rurouni Kenshin: The Beginning, both of which will be released on April 23 and June 4 respectively this year, the series is rolling out a collaboration with Sanrio’s globally-beloved character Hello Kitty on April 14.
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Plush Toys (2 Designs) | ¥3,850 Each (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Plush Toys (4 Designs) | ¥2,750 Each (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty A4 Folder Set | ¥495 (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Bottle | ¥1,540 (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Tote Bag | ¥2,200 (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Ballpoint Pens & Mechanical Pencils (2 Designs) | ¥770 Each (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Hand Towels | ¥1,430 (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Pins (6 Designs) | ¥330 Each (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Acrylic Stands (8 Designs) | ¥715 Each (Tax Included)
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty Sweets Paradise Collaboration Cafe
Kenshin Hello Kitty Beef Bowl / Battousai Hello Kitty Omurice
Enishi Hello Kitty Orange Crepe / Tomoe Hello Kitty Anmisu / Kaoru Hello Kitty Strawberry Pancake
Acrylic Mascot Key Rings
This marks the second collaboration between Rurouni Kenshin and Hello Kitty, the first taking place back in 2014 in promotion of Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends. Fans can get their hands on a collection of cute merchandise with Hello Kitty dressed as various characters from the series, as well as tuck into a themed menu which will first be served at Sweets Paradise Ueno ABAB from April 22 before rolling out to six more Sweets Paradise branches in Japan.
©和月伸宏／集英社 ©2020 映画「るろうに剣心 最終章 The Final/The Beginning 」製作委員会
Rurouni Kenshin x HELLO KITTY
Release Date: April 4, 2021
Buy Merchandise: At Sanrio stores and shops stocking Sanrio merch in Japan
Also Available Online
PayPay Mall: https://paypaymall.yahoo.co.jp/store/sanrio/top/
*Pins and acrylic stands unavailable online, available in-store only
Rurouni Kenshin x Hello Kitty IN SWEETS PARADISE
Start Date: April 22, 2021
Sanrio Official Website: https://www.sanrio.co.jp
Tokyo’s Masterpieces From The National Gallery London Exhibition Adds Extra Nighttime Dates
21.September.2020 | SPOT
The National Museum of Western Art in Tokyo has been hosting the Masterpieces From The National Gallery London exhibition since June 18 this year, and has just announced additional nighttime hour viewings, so the exhibit will be open until 21:00 from October 13 to 17.
The exhibition brings together a special selection of 61 masterful works from The National Gallery London in Japan for the first time, such as Vincent van Gogh’s Sunflowers, Johannes Vermeer’s Lady Seated at a Virginal, and Claude Monet’s The Water-Lily Pond.
Tickets for the evening viewings between October 13 and 17 will be available to purchase from September 19 via FamilyMart, e+, and Yomiuri Shimbun’s online store in Japan. More details are available on the exhibition website.
Masterpieces From The National Gallery London Exhibition – Tokyo
Running: June 18, 2020 – October 18, 2020
Venue: National Museum of Western Art
Opening Hours: 09:30-17:30 (until 21:00 from October 13 to 17)
Exhibition Website: https://artexhibition.jp/london2020/
*The exhibition will move to The National Museum of Art in Osaka from November 3, 2020 to January 31, 2021
Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #14 – ‘Kayaba Coffee’ in Yanaka
In this edition of The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone, I visited Kayaba Coffee, a coffee shop in Yanaka, Tokyo, which is a perfect example of the old and traditional shitamachi neighbourhoods.
Kayaba Coffee is just a 10-minute walk from both Nezu Station and Nippori Station.
This is a place I’ve visited in my private time out of work and I’m always excited to go. Kayaba Coffee was established in 1938, and actually closed in 2006. But due to public demand, the cafe reopened just two years later in 2008. It’s a popular coffee shop loved by people of all generations.
Time to head on in.
The first floor houses the counter and table seats, while the seating on the second floor is traditional zashiki style on tatami flooring. Although it’s a cafe, you I feel so relaxed in there that it’s like I’m visiting my grandma’s house. The sun shines through the big windows, making you all warm and want to take a nap.
I ordered their super popular egg sandwich! The menu was changed in May this year, and a new and improved version of their egg sandwich was put on there. It’s made using sourdough bread from VANER, a local bakery in Uenosakuragi not far from the cafe.
Breakfast Menu – Egg Sandwich | ¥1,000
The chewy, sour bread is the perfect combination with the fluffy eggs.
Lemon Squash | ¥600
The lemon squash has a cinnamon aftertaste. Everything on the menu is made with love and perfection; before I realised it, I was hooked on going there.
Strawberry Shaved Ice | ¥800
This was my first shaved ice of the year! I went with the classic strawberry flavour. The syrup is super juicy and nearly collapsed the fluffy shaved ice the moment I put it on. It has a syrupy texture and the strawberry juice has a sweet and sour kick that’s just simply delightful♡
And you can make it even sweeter by pouring over your desired amount of condensed milk. It was really tasty.
Kayaba Coffee is the same as it was back in the day, and continues to be loved dearly. I think even people who visit it for the first time will feel a sense of nostalgia. If you have a place you can go to relax on bad days or when you’re feeling down, it’s sure to give you the strength to work hard again. This cafe is a wonderful place that’s close to people’s hearts.
I want to visit there again already.
Writer/Model: Ema Tanioku
Photographer: Haruka Yamamoto
Design: Yuko Takayama (ASOBISYSTEM)
Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga
Address: 6-1-29 Yanaka, Taito-ku, Tokyo
Opening Hours: [Tue-Fri] 8:00-18:00 (Last Orders 17:30) / [Weekends] 8:00-19:00 (Last Orders 18:30)
New Desserts Arrive at Tokyo’s Panda Themed Cafe Mainichi Panda CAFE by Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo
Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo, a cafe located on the 2nd floor of Matsuzakaya Ueno in Tokyo, has been holding its “Mainichi Panda CAFE” event since October last year where it is serving up panda themed food and drink, selling panda plush toys and books, and the cafe itself is decorated with all things pandas.
Mainichi Panda CAFE by Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo is now introducing four new panda desserts, and its exhibition theme is celebrating the birthdays of Ueno Zoo’s giant pandas Xiang Xiang and Lili.
Adzuki Bean & Warabimochi Panda Parfait | ¥1,100
Japanese style parfait topped with panda-shaped ice cream.
Panda Jonamagashi & Matcha Set | ¥1,100 *Only 4 served per day
A Japanese ‘jonamagashi’ confection made to look like a panda wearing a straw hat.
Panda Pancake-Style Dorayaki w/Orange Peel | ¥1,100 (With Coffee ¥1,430)
Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo’s signature dorayaki served pancake style and branded with a cute panda face.
Lemon Yogurt Cake Set | ¥1,210
A slice of refreshing lemon and yogurt cake.
Mainichi Panda Exhibition (Excerpt)
The cafe has a special photo exhibition on display of the cute giant panda family that is housed in Ueno Zoo.
The first 100 customers who dine at the cafe each day will receive a free postcard of Ueno Zoo’s pandas.
If you love pandas, and have visited Ueno Zoo before, then you won’t want to miss a visit to Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo.
Mainichi Panda CAFE by Saryo Ginza Seigetsudo
Address: Matsuzakaya Ueno 2F, 3-29-5 Ueno, Taito Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 10:00-20:00 (Last Orders 19:30) *Opening hours subject to change
Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #13 – ‘Sepia’ in Shibamata
In this edition of The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone, I visited Sepia in Shibamata, a Showa-retro style cafe which I’ve always wanted to visit.
The cafe is just a 2-minute stroll from Shibamata Station which appears in the Japanese film Otoko wa Tsurai yo. The walk along the road that leads to Sepia, which is nearby the Buddhist temple Shibamata Taishakuten, is a pleasant one. Tokyo is a city consistently perceived as one that is cutting-edge in every aspect, but what I felt from each and every building surrounding Shibamata Station was a kind of warmth that you feel when something has history to it.
It’s been seven years since I came to Tokyo. Visiting Shibamata made me me realised how many places there are which I still don’t know about. It invigorated me. As my mind wandered with these pondering thoughts, I finally spotted the sign outside the cafe, and it sure is a cute one!
The moment I stepped inside, I stood, my mouth agape, and looked at my surroundings. It’s the first time I’ve entered such a bright, shining cafe. It was littered with characters I’ve never seen before, manga, magazines, and more.
When you hear the word kira kira (“glitter,” “sparkle”), the first thing that comes to mind for a lot of people is probably Harajuku and the Harajuku style, but Sepia’s version of kira kira is a nostalgic one betwixt 1965 and 1975 during the Showa Period. The cafe is incredibly delicate in every spot and corner, like I’m looking inside some grand treasure chest.
The owner of Sepia is Kiyoko Hasezawa. The cafe gets its name from the manga Milky Sepia Monogatari by Ako Mutsu. Ms. Hasezawa said that she wanted to bring to life the world of the manga she loved. The cafe is full of her dreams and is enjoyed by everyone, both children and adults alike.
The cafe menu is even inspired by the food that appears in the Milky Sepia Monogatari manga. The hard pudding I had, which combined caramel sauce and cream, was an absolute delight.
Homemade Showa Pudding & Cream Soda Set: ¥1,200
If we’re talking cafes, then you can’t go wrong with cream soda. The cream soda served at Sepia comes in seven different flavours and colours: melon, Blue Hawaii, strawberry, lemon, peach, grape, and orange. I was spoilt for choice on which to go for, but in the end I went with the pink-coloured strawberry. It had a sweet flavour and was really delicious.
Strawberry Cream Soda: ¥750
I devoured the hotcakes too. The pastry was so fluffy and tasty – I could have eaten a hundred of them. The second one I ate with honey.
At the back of the cafe, they also have the “Candy Candy Museum.” There’s a personal collection of items from Candy H Milky, a female fashion enthusiastic who used to be a customer at Sepia. There’s a photo spot for snapping a photo in the cafe too.
It’s a great time getting to go and look at the displays after eating. I recommend going to see the collection yourself with your own eyes. Entry to the museum is ¥300.
There’s a tearoom up on the second floor which has a nostalgic vibe to it. I felt warm and relaxed, like I’d been transported to my grandma’s house.
Humans can’t travel back in time, but if we look after mementos properly, we can go back there in our minds and memories. Sepia, a place that continues to be cherished and loved, is everybody’s treasure trove.
My oh my, I really want to go back there again.
Address: 7-4-11 Shibamata, Katsushika-ku, Tokyo
Days Open: Fridays, Saturdays, Mondays
Business Hours: 12:00-17:00 (Last Orders 16:30)
For the latest information, visit Sepia’s official Twitter page @sepia_mama
Sanrio Gift’s New Shop in Ueno Welcomes Hello Kitty Panda Merchandise & More
Sanrio opened a new gift shop called Sanrio Gift Gate in Ueno on January 24, 2020. This is the 107th branch of the gift shop to open in Japan, following the openning of the Asakusa branch which opened in Asakusa last year. Aimed at tourists both Japanese and foreign, it sells merchandise of Sanrio’s popular cast of characters.
The souvenir shop features a range of Ueno exclusives, including a line-up of six popular Sanrio characters wearing panda outfits.
Plush Toys (6 Designs) – ¥2,200 Each / Small Plush Toys (6 Designs) – ¥1,760 Each
Who could resist one of these cute toys? The bigger ones at 16cm tall and the small ones 11cm. The line-up includes fan favourites Hello Kitty, Pompompurin, Cinnamoroll, My Melody, Kuromi, and Pochacco.
There’s also pop-up cards with a variety of designs, including one that opens up into Ameya-Yokochō open-air market, another that turns into Hello Kitty and a panda sat down, and more.
Edo-Tamagawaya x Hello Kitty Pink Tonkotsu Ramen – ¥390
Budoonoki Sanrio Character Baumkuchen – ¥594 Each (Hello Kitty/My Melody/Pompompurin/Cinnamoroll)
The Salt Industry Center of Japan x Hello Kitty Table Salt – ¥248
There’s also food and snacks amongst a whole range of other goodies, all perfect as gifts and souvenirs.
Be sure to stop by Sanrio Gift Plaza the next time you’re in Ueno.
ⓒ 1976, 1996, 2020 SANRIO CO.,LTD. TOKYO, JAPAN Original Text: SANRIO CO.,LTD.
*All listed prices include tax. Sold items receive stock turnovers.
Sanrio Gift Gate Ueno
Address: Plaza U Bldg. 1F, 4-8-6 Ueno, Taito Ward, Tokyo
Business Hours: 11:00-20:00 (subject to change – please check website for latest info))
Other: Duty-Free/Payment possible with Alipay and WechatPay.
Shop Information: https://www.sanrio.co.jp/shop/sh8122100/
Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #12 – ‘J-COOK’ in Gaiemmae
In this edition of The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone, I visited J-COOK in Gaiemmae, a place I visited one time while off work which ended up in me wanting to absolutely feature it in the series!
It’s just a 5-minute stroll from Gaiemmae Station.
The cafe enjoys lots of sunlight, which is brightened further by all the plants scattered through the shop. The cafes I have visited to date are often a little darker with only a little light seeping through the windows to create a certain atmosphere, and they are wonderful, but this was the first I have ever visited with so might light and so many plants. The air felt clear, adding to the level of comfort in the cafe, perhaps because there are so many plants adorning the interior.
The cafe also has a space with a slightly more darker light and atmosphere on the left side. I haven’t sat in that area yet, so I think I’ll try it out on my next visit.
When I come to J-COOK, my eyes always wander over to the marzipan creations (¥450).
These ones here were actually all individually handmade by the owner’s husband from the early morning.
If you look really closely, you’ll notice all the dog designs are different. When ordering, get to pick out which one you want, so try finding your perfect pup!
I had mine together with an iced coffee (¥450). The sweet marzipan is a delicious combination with the bitterness of the coffee.
I also got some potted cream (¥450). It’s kind of like a Japanese custard pudding with just a moderate amount of sweetness.
I had mine with a bit of brandy which had fragrant vanilla notes. They’ve had this brandy for 33 years since the store first opened.
The cream was sensational, and the gentle notes linger afterwards.
They have a lot of different homemade soups too which are perfect for the coming cold weather. I got the New Orleans-style gumbo soup. It’s spicy with clam and okra in it.
Relaxing jazz music plays in the cafe while you sit and enjoy your drink and meal.
J-COOK is a wonderful little cafe run by a husband and wife. When I first came, the wife came and talked to me. She’s super friendly, and although it was our first meeting, she made me feel really comfortable and welcome. She must be full of happiness, which in turn naturally gives people who visit the strength to be positive and work hard.
I reckon their smiles have saved a lot of people.
I can’t wait to visit again!
Writer/Model: Ema Tanioku
Photographer: Haruka Yamamoto
Design: Yuko Abe (ASOBISYSTEM)
Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga
Address: 3-36-26 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo
Opening Hours: [Tue-Sat] 8:00-22:00 (Last Orders) / [Sun] 11:00-18:00 (Last Orders 17:30)
Official Twitter: @jcookjp
Young ASOBISYSTEM Models Design Glasses Perfect for Everyday Fashion
19.September.2019 | FASHION
Glasses brand Zoff teamed up with famous models Saki Shibata, Yuri Suganuma and Rinko Murata to produce a branded glasses series that is perfect to wear “All Day, Every Day”. The girls designed these glasses to fit into and enhance your everyday life experiences. The Zoff CLASSIC Girls Collection -All Day, Every Day- series will be released across Japan from October 11, 2019.
The main theme of this series is All Day, Every Day. From this, the three sub themes of morning, midday and evening were created and each model was put in charge of the designs for one of these themes. Shibata was in charge of ‘morning’ designs, Suganuma was in charge of ‘midday’ designs and Murata was in charge of ‘evening’ designs. Each model carefully thought of how the user would wear the glasses during their sub theme time in order to fully enhance their daily experiences. Each model also created a unique personal design out of metal for the temple tips of the glasses they designed.
Before being released in stores, the glasses will be available to preorder from Zoff’s official online store from 11am (JST) on September 20. From the same day from 9pm, there will be a one-hour-long live broadcast where the models will showcase their creations. A limited number of the glasses will be available to preorder during this live broadcast.
There is also a lottery taking place with the chance to take part in the Zoff CLASSIC Girls Collection Special Event which consists of two parts: A tea session where you can listen to the girls’ stories on how they produced the glasses and even get some pointers on how to coordinate your look, and a special photography session with the three models.
Designs by Saki Shibata
ZH191011 Available in 3 colours ¥7,000
These compact and circular-shaped rims are the perfect way to highlight your classic look or even a tomboy look. However you decide to wear these glasses, you will always look good with minimum effort.
ZO192024 Available in 3 colours ¥9,000
The vintage style and matte coloured metal frame make these glasses perfect for both men and women. The carefully chosen size makes these extra special.
Shibata’s statement on the personalised symbol:
“I want the wearer to feel good the moment they put on these glasses. I designed these glasses to give the wearer confidence to hold their head high and say: ‘Today is going to be a wonderful day and I am going to enjoy every moment of it.'”
Designs by Yuri Suganuma
ZP192020 Available in 3 colours ¥7,000
These frames are rectangular with soft round edges to make your face look smaller and your eyes look bigger.
ZO191012 Available in 3 colours ¥9,000
A perfect mix between foxy and geeky, the roundness of these rims is subtle, adding a feminine touch to your look. Although you may get the impression that these glasses only go well with a few styles, they actually coordinate well with a surprisingly large range of styles.
Suganuma’s statement on the personalised symbol:
“My design is a heart rate to represent how the wearer will feel when they put these glasses on. I hope my glasses make your heart jump with excitement.”
Designs by Rinko Murata
ZP192019 Available in three colours ¥7,000
The metal frame is so beautiful that it is like wearing an accessory. The subtle colours of the frame make it perfect for casual clothing. If you are looking for something for everyday use, these are perfect. Big rims are trending right now.
ZN191011 Available in three colours ¥9,000
There is a wonderful contrast between the different materials used and the circular-shaped lenses give a classic look. Switch the lenses for blue light blocking lenses to reduce the amount of blue light exposure from your computer and phone.
Murata’s statement on the personal symbol:
“I etched my initials ‘rm’ into the design. I hope the wearer feels the power to transform into a brand new person whenever they put on these glasses. I hope my glasses provide a sense of comfort and confidence to the wearer.”
Whether you are a fan of the models or this is your first time hearing about them, you just have to check out their stylish designs which are suitable for men and women of all ages.
Zoff CLASSIC Girls Collection -All Day, Every Day-
Price: ¥7,000/ ¥9,000 (Price after tax, includes price of standard lenses)
*Comes as a set with a special case and microfiber cleaning cloth
Product Range: 6 different shapes in 3 different colours (18 designs in total)
Release Date: October 11, 2019
* Available for preorder from 11am on September 20, 2019 from the following locations:
– Zoff Online Store
– Zoff Rakuten Market
– Zoff ZOZOTOWN Store
* The models will be presenting their glasses on the Live Shop! live stream for 1 hour from 9pm on September 20, 2019. During this hour, a limited number of the glasses will be available to preorder.
* All pre ordered goods from this series will be shipped to customers from the end of October.
Purchasable From: All Zoff stores nationwide (Not available at shopping outlets), Zoff Online Store, Zoff Rakuten Market, Zoff ZOZOTOWN shop, Zoff i LUMINE (Also available at the following overseas Zoff stores: Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore).
Special Edition Website: http://clk.nxlk.jp/Z6IMGHK5/test
Popular Japanese Model Saki Shibata Releases Items in Collaboration With Pompompurin
27.August.2019 | FASHION
Popular Japanese model Saki Shibata―known to her fans by the nickname Shibasaki―has teamed up with Sanrio’s adorable golden retriever Pompompurin to release a collection of collaborative items on the character merchandise online store hopely.
“Pompompurin x Saki Shibata” Handbag – ¥2,500 (Before Tax)
“Pompompurin x Saki Shibata” Compact Mirror – ¥1,000 (Before Tax)
“Pompompurin x Saki Shibata” Pocketable Tote Bag – ¥3,000 (Before Tax)
Shibasaki is a huge fan of Pompompurin, and her cute collection includes a handbag, compact mirror and tote bag.
All of these items can be enjoyed by girls and women alike. Which do you have your eyes set on?♡
A Date With Yutaro: Soaking Up the Japanese Summer Sun & Visiting the Art Aquarium | Tokyo Stroll
It’s been a while since our last date with Yutaro. He’s been very busy with film shoots. He had some spare time today so we paid a visit to Nihonbashi for our next date. “ECO EDO Nihonbashi: Enjoy Cool Edo With All Five Senses” is an event held every year in the Nihonbashi area which takes the Edo period cultural idea of “coolness”―an in, to enjoy being cool during the summer－and puts a modern spin on it. There are many exciting things to look forward to, including the art aquarium which proves massively popular every year.
We gave ourselves more time to arrive at the meeting place to be in the safe side, but it seems Yutaro-kun was already there waiting for us!
Nihonbashi Information Center | IPPIN CAFÉ “Sparkling Herb Tea” – ¥518 (Tax Included)
“Here, you must be boiling.” Yutaro-kun kindly offers a cup of IPPIN CAFE’s limited-edition sparkling herb tea. It’s a delicious mix of fizzy soda and lemon, a perfect refreshment for the summer. Since he ordered takeout the drink came with a goldfish straw. Goldfish are a staple sight during Japanese summer festivals so it’s very fitting for the occasion!
With our drinks in hand, it’s time to head to Nihonbashi for our Edo summer date!
Wind-Chime Forest Path
Lining the path between Fukutoku Shrine and Fukutoku Garden is the Wind-Chime Forest Path where around 200 Edo-style wind chimes dangled. This year, during the evenings, the path is illuminated with beautiful lighting.
When the breeze rolls past the wind chimes ring one by one－a cool and refreshing sound.
“I hear each one of these Edo wind chimes are individually handmade by craftsmen.”
When you hear the sound of the wind chimes it makes you feel cool like a gentle breeze of the wind.
After strolling along the Wind-Chime Forest Path we make our way towards this year’s ECO EDO Art Aquarium event.
The moment we step instead Yutaro is already dazzled by all the goldfish: “Wow! I knew about this place from what I’d seen online, but this my first time here! This art aquarium really is something!”
The full title of the event is “ECO EDO Nihonbashi ART AQUARIUM 2019 ~Edo, Coolness of Kingyo~ & Night Aquarium.” Goldfish were a huge part of the common culture in Nihonbashi during the Edo period. This event recreates that and brings that “coolness” aspect while combining it with contemporary art by having people observe the fish in lots of different artistic environments.
“This is the biggest fish tank, apparently it has 3,000 fish swimming inside!”
“Seeing the light reflect on the water from the illuminations lets you see the fish in a different light, doesn’t it?”
Looks like Yutaro-kun is having a lot of fun taking photos.
He’s equally interested in just about every fish tank!
These other fish tanks have a different aesthetic to them. Their Japanese-style designs make for great photos.
“This one’s beautiful, it’s like a kaleidoscope.”
It really does look like one. When you take a peek instead you can glimpse all kinds of colourful fish gently swimming around.
“There’re goldfish swimming on the ceiling too. So cool! This aquarium is incredible. It brings together the great culture of Edo and contemporary art.”
The Art Aquarium bustles every single year with visitors, but this year will mark its last run. It’s being held at Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall, so if you have the chance to go then please do.
We of course checked out some local Nihonbashi treats too! We stopped by morozoff for some cheesecake after the aquarium.
morozoff Kamadashi Cheesecake (Goldfish) – ¥270 Each (Tax Included)
These cute cheesecakes with their goldfish designs are available for a limited time only. They’re filled with sweet red bean paste. They perfect with iced tea.
“Got some! Let’s eat them while we head back.”
Goldfish Lantern Walkway
Our first date in Nihonbashi was so much fun. While on the date Yutaro-kun spoke about the new live-action film he’s in, Kaguya-sama: Love Is War.
“It’s a romance film with mind games to try and make the other person confess their love. I play the character Tsubasa. His number one highlight scene is the kabedon scene. That was my first day shooting, so I was super nervous, but I got along well with the other actors, and the atmosphere on set was harmonious, so I was able to relax for the shoots. Tsubasa is a genuine guy who will believe things that have been said to him in earnest. You’ve definitely gotta check out all his scenes throughout the film!”
“A lot of the cast are the same age as me, so we were all energetic together in the waiting room. There’s a scene at the end where all the cast get together. It took 3 days to shoot so we ended up getting along really well.”
“This film has made me realise that love comes in many shapes, and that mind games happen in a variety of ways between guys and girls. There’s cute scenes that express that small bit of pride that teenagers have, the embarassment they feel, when they get butterflies, scenes that will warm your heart. The film has various elements to it so I thoroughly enjoyed watching it myself. I hope that couples in love in their teens and twenties watch it, and I also hope that married couples watch it and crack up laughing too.”
“In the film it’s summer break, and they go and see fireworks and stuff. It’s definitely one to watch durnig the summer. You’re gonna come watch it too, right? Shall we go?”
An offer we cannot refuse! We’ll definitely go and see it with you, Yutaro-kun!
Writer: Yuki Yokoo
Photographer: Kayo Sekiguchi
ECO EDO Nihonbashi 2019 ~Enjoy Cool Edo With All Five Senses~
Running: July 5, 2019 – September 23, 2019
Location: Nihonbashi Area
TEL: 03-3242-0010 (Nihonbashi Information Center)
Event Page: https://www.nihonbashi-tokyo.jp/en/ecoedo2019/
ECO EDO Nihonbashi ART AQUARIUM 2019 ~Edo, Coolness of Kingyo~ & Night Aquarium
Running: July 5, 2019 – September 23, 2019
Location: Nihonbashi Mitsui Hall Floor 5F (Entrance at 4F), COREDO Muromachi 1, 2-2-1 Nihonbashimuromachi, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: Art Aquarium 11:00-19:00 / Night Aquarium From 19:00
[Sun-Fri] 11:00-22:00 (Last Entries 22:00) [Sat & days prior to public hoiday] 11:00-23:30 (Last Entries 23:00)
Access: Directly connected to Exit A6 of Mitsukoshimae Station, accessible on the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line and Hanzomon Line / Directly connected to Shin-Nihombashi Station / 8-minutes on foot from East Exit of Kanda Station JR 8-minutes on foot from Nihonbashi Exit of Tokyo Station
Kaguya-sama: Love Is War Film
Release Date: September 6, 2019
Adapted from the manga of the same name by Aka Akasaka (Shueisha/Weekly Young Jump)
Cast: Sho Hirano (King & Prince), Kanna Hashimoto, Hayato Sano, Natsumi Ikema, Nana Asakawa, Mayu Hotta, YUTARO, Takashima Masahiro, Jiro Sato
Official Website: https://kaguyasama-movie.com/
Yutaro was born in Hiroshima on June 3rd 1998. His modeling career has earned him lots of attention as a fashion icon of the new generation. The famous model also works as a “charisma” shop assistant. Yutaro has gained his reputation as a “mysterious and handsome guy” from his appearance on Japanese variety shows. His debut was made on the show “Gyoretsu no Dekiru Horitsu Sodanjo” and has since then appeared on numerous different TV shows. He challenged himself to appear on stage for the very first time in March this year and is gaining popularity by the day for his diverse work.
Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #11 – ‘Hatoya’ in Asakusa
In this edition of The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone, I visited Hatoya which is located in Asakusa Shin-Nakamise Arcade.
The streets of Tokyo’s historical district of Asakusa are packed to end with cafés. You can be spoiled for choice, but Hatoya stood out to me in particular as it’s an especially old café. Business there began back in 1927 but the actual building was built back in the Taisho period, meaning its history spans more than 90 years ago!
The outside appearance of the shop is smart and chic so it’s very easy to spot. I couldn’t tell by looking from the outside, but the inside is full of old decorations and odds and ends which make you feel the history of the café.
One reason why I wanted to visit this place so much is because I was drawn to their logo. It’s really retro-kawaii so I just couldn’t resist!
You should take some photos too if you visit.
It was time to head inside. It’s really comfy and cozy in there; the atmosphere was nice and relaxed.
Framed on the wall is a map of the Asakusa area during the Taisho era. Hatoya became famous back then because people could buy coffee for a mere 5 sen (a single sen is one-hundredth of a yen).
When business first began at Hatoya, because the café was opposite the stage door of a theatre, all of the famous actors and actresses would pop in. Some include famous Japanese comedian Roppa Furukawa and film actor Kiyoshi Atsumi who played Tora-san in the film series Otoko wa Tsurai yo.
I ordered the café’s popular hotcakes which cost ¥600. They have been making these same hotcakes since before the war.
They were nice and fluffy and had a deliciously gorgeous brown colour. The flavour was out of this world when the butter melted from the heat of the hotcakes and mixed together with the syrup.
The portion might look like a lot but they are fluffy and have a light flavour so can be finished with no problem.
And is the café’s signature milkshake (¥500).
It’s so refreshing that you can knock it back all in one go. It has a simple flavour but it tasted so good!
I also ordered the ¥600 cream soda, my favourite beverage.
I’ve been to many cafés, and have covered many in this series, but this is the first I have dined at with such a deep history. I found myself enthralled by the stories of the owner who has continued to treasure the café and maintained it all the same since it opened. I feel like I have learned about a world I never knew about. The next time I go to Hatoya with a friend I’ll be sure to let them in on its history. I encourage you to visit too!
Writer/Model: Ema Tanioku
Photographer: Haruka Yamamoto
Design: Yuko Abe (ASOBISYSTEM)
Address: 1-23-8 Asakusa, Taito Ward, Tokyo
Business Hours: 10:00-17:30
No Fixed Holidays
Tabelog Page: https://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1311/A131102/13076130/
“Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.