6 Most Popular Spots in Harajuku in January 2018 by MOSHI MOSHI BOX

30.January.2018 | FEATURES / SPOT

Hi, everyone! Ellie here from the MOSHI MOSHI BOX Harajuku Tourist Information Center.

 

Today, we’re going to take a look at some of the most popular spots in Harajuku that we get asked about a lot at the MOSHI MOSHI BOX. These are actual spots tourists have enquired about with us, so this is information about said spots based on the voices of the people!

 

Shops selling ‘squishies’

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One of the biggest questions that has been raised since spring 2017 by people who stop by the MOSHI MOSHI BOX is about “squishy” toys. This boom has lit a fire over on YouTube and is hugely popular with teenage girls. There are many shops that sell these squishies, but the most famous one that everybody knows is the “Nihon Squeeze Center.” One of the store’s most popular products are the squishies made in collaboration with Tokyo Bakery. You can’t buy these at any other shop. Newer squishies have an odor to them, but the squishes at this shop don’t have that factory smell – they have the scent of the real thing!

 

Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/60451

 

■Information

 

Nihon Squeeze Center

Address: Harajuku MY Bldg. 2F, 3-24-2 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

Access: 10-minutes’ walk from Harajuku Station via the JR line / 5-minutes’ walk from Meiji Jingumae Station via the Tokyo Metro Line

Hours: 10:30-17:30

Closed: Irregular holidays *closures will be announced via the store’s official homepage and Twitter

Homepage: https://r.goope.jp/sukusen

 

 

ROLL ICE CREAM FACTORY

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“ROLL ICE CREAM FACTORY” is a hugely popular roll ice cream shop in Omotesando, Harajuku. Roll ice cream was originally created in Thailand. This shop serves up their own original brand of cold plate ice cream in the New York style. The roll ice cream is made in front of the customers on a cold plate at -10℃. You can choose the ice cream, toppings and fruits you want eat. It’s super fun to watch the staff make the ice cream as they roll it together along with various sweets and fruit. It’s a perfect store for Instagram feeds, so it’s become popular with young girls in Japan.

Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/57051

 

■Information

 

ROLL ICE CREAM FACTORY

Address: JUST Harajuku 1F, 4-28-12 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

Contact: 03-3470-0227

Opening Hours: 10:00-21:00

No fixed holidays.

Official Homepage: http://rollicecreamfactory.com/

 

 

KAWAII MONSTER CAFE 

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The KAWAII MONSTER CAFE is an iconic and immensely popular concept restaurant in Harajuku. The restaurant is packed with all the Harajuku-esque décor you could ever want, and the menu too is something you could only expect from a place like Harajuku. A popular item on the menu is the “Colourful Pop Burger” (¥2,700). It takes the form of a cute hamburger topped with narutomaki to make dizzy-looking eyes. The patty is divinely juicy and is sure to fill you up.

Full Details: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/64484

 

■Information

 

KAWAII MONSTER CAFE

Address: 4-31-10 Jingumae Shibuya-ku, Tokyo YM Square Building 4F

Access: 1-minute by foot from Exit 5 of Meiji-jingumae Station / 5-minutes’ by foot from Omotesando Exit of Harajuku Station

Contact: 03-5413-6142 *also taking orders (except weekends & national holidays)

 

Business Hours

Monday-Saturday:

Lunch – 11:30-16:30 (last orders 16:00) *90 mins max, last entries 15:30

Dinner 18:00-22:30 (last orders 22:00)

Sundays & Holidays: 11:00-20:00 (last orders 19:30)

*no fixed holidays

*entry may be refused during certain events

 

Homepage: http://kawaiimonster.jp/day/pc/

 

 

Instagram-Worthy Spots

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If we’re talking Instagrammable spots in Harajuku, then the instantly-recognizable world clock at the MOSHI MOSHI BOX Harajuku Tourist Information Center is a good starting point! As well as functioning as an information center for tourists, we offer money exchange, we do free karaoke, we have a Japanese souvenir shop and more. We’re always bustling with people from all around the world. The building itself photo-worthy, but it’s the “Colorful Rebellion -WORLD TIME CLOCK-” created by Sebastian Masuda that’s the main event. Many people visit to take a picture of it.

More Spots: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/24293

 

■Information

 

MOSHI MOSHI BOX Harajuku Tourist Information Center

Address: MOSHI MOSHI BOX Harajuku Tourist Information Center, 3-23-5 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

Opening Hours: 10:00-18:00

Contact: 03-6447-2225

 

 

ASOKO Harajuku

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ASOKO is a variety store selling countless kawaii items at a cheap price. From colourfully cute ball pens to eye-catching masking tape, the store offers a range of stationary goods, stylish kitchenware and more. All designs in this shop are unique. If you’re looking for a souvenir from Harajuku to buy for someone, then look no further. ASOKO is always packed with tourists.

 

■Information

 

ASOKO Harajuku

Address: 6-27-8 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

Opening Hours: 11:00-20:00

No fixed holidays.

Homepage: http://www.asoko-jpn.com

 

 

Kiddy Land Harajuku

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Kiddy Land is a landmark of Omotesando in Harajuku. Established in 2012, the store celebrated its 5th anniversary in July 2017. From the bottom floor to the upper 4th floor, Kiddy Land is lined with merchandise themed around popular characters loved by Japanese kids and adults, and even people overseas. It’s truly a character merch theme park! The store also sells limited edition items only available in the Harajuku branch, so it’s always bustling.

 

■Information

 

Kiddy Land Harajuku

Address: Harajuku Omotesando, 6-1-9 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

Opening Hours: Monday to Friday – 11:00-21:00 / Weekends & Holidays – 10:30-21:00

Contact: 03-3409-3431

Homepage: http://www.kiddyland.co.jp

 

 

Did you enjoy our picks for January? We hope our selection proves useful for your trip to Harajuku so you can visit all of the most popular spots!

RELATED ENTRIES

  • Korilakkuma Cafe Opens in Harajuku With Projection Mapping Incorporated Dishes

    11.December.2019 | FOOD

    The all-new “HARAJUKU AR BOX -table projection mapping cafe-” will open in Harajuku, Tokyo on December 21, 2019. This permanent cafe incorporates “interactive tabletop projection mapping” technology developed by Sony. The cafe runs in a “pair seating” system and so tables must be occupied by two people. 

    The first collaboration to hit the cafe for its grand opening is with Korilakkuma. The collaboration is titled “Korilakkuma Cafe: Inside The Mirror.” Customers will be able to enjoy their meals while playing together with the characters as they walk around their plates and tables through projection mapping technology.

     

    The theme of the cafe is “Korilakkuma inside a mirror,” which sees Korilakkuma meeting another Korilakkuma inside the mirror in a world of cats and cosmetics.

     

    Customers will be able to get their hands on a range of exclusive merchandise with original art illustrated for the cafe, as well as enjoy themed meals which come in the form of courses made to share between two people. They are free to choose an appetizer, main dish and dessert. *Course menu only – items not available to order separately

     

    Menu item names are translated from Japanese.

     

    Appetizers: Soup and Salad

    Welcome to the World Inside the Mirror! Soup & Salad

    There are two soups to choose from: clam chowder and minestrone. As a pair you can also order one of each.

     

    Main Dishes

    Omurice – Let’s Draw Together

    Chicken and Mushroom Cream Pasta Made Delicious With Magic!

    Friendly Twin Korilakkuma Burger (Available December 21 – January 19 only)

    There are five main dishes in total to choose from including those above.

     

    Desserts

    Spell-Cast Pancakes

    Crème Brûlée & Magic Mirror (Available December 21 – January 19 only)

    Heart-Filled Fondant Chocolate (Available January 20 to February 16 only)

    There are five desserts in total to choose from including those above.

     

    Drinks

    Korilakkuma Cafe au Lait – ¥890 (Served Hot Only)

    Korilakkuma Cocoa – ¥890 (Served Hot Only)

    Twin Korilakkuma Strawberry Milk – ¥990

    When you order a drink, you’ll get an original coaster too.

     

    Merchandise

    Pin Badge (6 Designs) – ¥400

    Folder Set – ¥500

    Sliding Mirror (Pink or Purple) – ¥1,200 Each

     

    There are lots of other exclusive pieces of merchandise to get your hands on too. Every customer will also receive one of two dolomite crystals.

     

    *All listed prices include tax. Photos are for illustrative purposes only.

    ©2019 San-X Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

  • Kirby Pop-Up Shop ‘PLAYFUL KIRBY’ to Open in Laforet Harajuku in Tokyo

    08.December.2019 | ANIME&GAME / FASHION / SPOT

    LEGS is opening a Kirby-themed pop-up shop named ‘PLAYFUL KIRBY’ for a limited time in Laforet Harajuku, a landmark of Tokyo’s fashion hub Harajuku.

    The shop has invited popular Japanese illustrator Shogo Sekine on board, who is known for its distinct typography work which mixes fashion with messages written in English, to create an original line of Kirby apparel and miscellaneous fashion items.

    PLAYFUL KIRBY is also teaming up with Converse. Kirby has inhaled a few too many Converse Stars and has turned into a truly fashionable pink blob. The line-up is unisex so can be enjoyed by anyone and everyone. It will include items also available to purchase at Converse Stars branches as well as Laforet Harajuku exclusives.

     

    Witness Nintendo’s Dream Land hero in an all-new light as he becomes a fashion icon at Laforet Harajuku this month from December 16 to 26.

     

    ©Nintendo / HAL Laboratory, Inc.

    *Photos are for illustrative purposes only

  • Pompompurin Cafe Reveals Christmas Menu For Harajuku, Yokohama & Umeda Branches

    27.November.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

    The Harajuku, Yokohama and Umeda branches of the Pompompurin Cafeーthe cafe chain centred on Sanrio’s popular character Pompompurinーis serving up two cute Christmas menu items this year from December 1 to 25.

    *Food names below are translated from Japanese

    Hurry Up Santa – Pompompurin Cheese Keema Curry – ¥1,290 (Before Tax)

    This rich and spicy keema curry is made with Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese, and natural cheese. The colourful stars are made from carrot and paprika, while the spiralled Christmas cheese is a combination of spinach and mashed potato. Purin is made of rice and is waiting in anticipation for Santa to deliver his present. You’ll see he’s holding a stocking which is a made from bread and walleye pollack mayo. A hearty dish that is both delicious and adorable

    Snowman Pompompurin – Snow Covered Chocolate Tart ¥1,190 (Before Tax)

    Pompompurin has turned into a vanilla ice cream snowman and is standing next to a pistachio cream Christmas tree. They are both atop a rich chocolate tart. This cute dessert is like a Christmas garden straight out of a children’s picture book.

    If you decide you want to spend your Christmas with Pompompurin this year, then you’ll receive a free lunch mat when you order food and a free coaster when you get a drink. These are both limited in quantity, so don’t miss out!

     

    ©1996, 2019 SANRIO CO., LTD. APPROVAL NO.S603310

  • Japan Shopping Festival: Hello Kitty Supports Huge Shopping Event Aimed at Foreigners

    26.November.2019 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    一The Japan Shopping Tourism Organization (JSTO) has announced that it will hold an event titled “Japan Shopping Festival” aimed at foreign tourists in Japan from December 1, 2019 to February 29, 2020.

    ①Questionnaire Campaign

    A questionnaire will be carried out for non-Japanese travellers to win round-trip tickets to Japan. Travellers will be selected randomly from a lucky draw.

     

    ②Instagram Photo Contest

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    ③Coupons, Goods & Experiences

    Japan Shopping Now is one of Japan’s biggest online shopping portal sites, and they are now promoting information on Japanese shopping overseas in English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, and Korean. This includes coupons, sales, and more at almost 1,000 participating stores.

     

    ④Special Events

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    Official Website:  http://tohoku.japanshopping.org/

     

    ・Matsuyama Shopping Festival (December 1, 2019 – March 31, 2020)

    From Okaido Shopping Street to Matsuyama Gintengai Shopping Arcade, Matsuchika Town, and more, look forward to end-of-year lucky draws, food events, shopping, and so on.

     

    Official Website:  http://matsuyama.japanshopping.org/

     

    Discover the wonders of shopping in Japan and learn more about the country with the Japan Shopping Festival.

  • Top 4 Places to Visit in Kyoto This Winter: Snow, Gourmet Food, Hot Springs & More

    26.November.2019 | SPOT

    Kyoto is known as the ancient capital of Japan. It is said to be the place where quintessential Japanese culture started, and has charmed the world over with its incredibly rich 1,200-year history. Today, we take a look at some of the best places to visit in Kyoto this winter as covered by the November 2019 issue of Japanese magazine Mou Hitotsu no Kyoto (“The Other Kyoto”).

     

    From gourmet food to sightseeing spots, the arts and moreーif you’re in Kyoto this year, you have plenty of reasons to leave your hotel room or house.

     

    Yuki Tourou: See the snowy thatched-roof huts

    Miyama Kayabuki no Sato is located in Miyamachokita, Nantan. It is home to 39 houses with thatched roofs and is a popular sightseeing spot due to its gorgeous natural scenery throughout the entire year. It was listed in Japan’s Groups of Traditional Buildings in 1993.

    In the New Year, snow falls on the huts, which looks beautiful when they light up the “Yuki Tourou”ーor snow lanternsーin late January every year. There are stalls that serve hot food in this little town, and they also host an event where you can make your own snow lantern.

     

    Running: January 25, 2020 – February 1, 2020

    Official Website: http://www.yukitouro.jp/

     

     

    Amanohashidate: One of Japan’s “Three Scenic Views”

    Amanohashidate is a sandbank located in Miyazu Bay that separates the north and south inlet of the Asoumi Sea. It formed as a result of pebbles being carried by the ocean current for thousands of years. Its name comes from the way it looks like a bridge spanning across the sky. It is known as one of Japan’s “Three Scenic Views”

    Amanohashidate is a sight to behold at any point throughout the year, but if you can travel there in the winter, you’re in for a surprise, as the entire sandbank is littered with pure white snow. On very cold days in the morning the snow even covers the tops of the pine trees, but when the sun rises and the temperature warms up the snow on the frost-tipped trees melts. This has led to it being called an “illusionary sight” due to its rarity. Make a point of getting up super early so you don’t miss it!

     

    Address: Tango-Amanohashidate-Ōeyama Quasi-National Park, Miyazu, Kyoto

    Official Website: https://www.amanohashidate.jp/lang/en/

     

     

    Fukuchiyama Castle: The magnificent castle of snow

    Fukuchiyama Castle sits atop a tall hill in the city of Fukuchiyama. The castle was established as the new Tanba province by Akechi Mitsuhide in 1579 following the province’s capture in 1576. The castle was demolished once during the Meiji Period but was restored again in 1986. It is now the only castle that remains today built by Mitsuhide.

    The castle architecture has a lot of personality, and during the winter months takes on a gorgeous white as a result of the snow. Gazing across the castle land from the watchtower is an absolute must when visiting. Also, if you’re visiting next year, the new Fukuchiyama Mitsuhide Museum is set to open on January 11, so be sure to check that out too.

     

    Address: 5 Chome Naiki, Fukuchiyama, Kyoto

    Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00 (Last Entries 16:30)

    Closed: December 28-31, 2019 / January 4-6, 2020

    Entry Price: General ¥330 / Elementary & Junior High School Students ¥110
    Official Website: https://dokkoise.com/en/temple_shrine/index.html

     

     

    Monjusou Shourotei: Feast on crab fondue while gazing at Amanohashidate

    Monjusou Shourotei is a ryokanーa Japanese-style innーlocated along Amanohashidate, one of Japan’s Three Scenic Views which we mentioned earlier on this list. All guests staying at the inn are given a window view of Amanohashidate from their rooms.

     

    The inn offers an original salted snow crab fondue. Snow crab is particularly enjoyed for its degree of freshness. It’s served with vegetables and the boiled crab itself, making for a delicious combination of flavours.

    The hot springs at Amanohashidate are famous and praised as “the baths of the gods.” They are also said to leave your skin looking beautiful after a dip. The inn also offers open-air baths lined with stones from Shikoku and wild grass from the mountains, offering a truly indulging experience.

     

    Address: Amanohashidate Monjudomisaki, Miyazu, Kyoto

    Official Website: https://shourotei.com/

     

     

    These are just some of the incredible places you can enjoy in wintertime Kyoto. You can find more information on Kyoto Side or from one of our many articles on Kyoto.

  • TOTOCO Odawara: Kanagawa’s Sea Food Theme Park Opens November 22

    17.November.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

    Gyoko no Eki TOTOCO Odawara is a new “fish theme park” set to have its grand opening on November 22, 2019 at 10:00am (JST).

    The facility was established to promote further exchanges with Odawara Fishing Port which is said to be the biggest fish market in western Kanagawa Prefecture. It is the first “Fishing Port” (Gyoko no Eki*) and will sell seafood sourced locally, fishery products and more, as well as hold events to help promote Odawara.

     

    The building has three flours. The first floor is like a marketplace where fish, fishery products, produce, and more will be sold. The second and third floors house seafood restaurants and offer a panoramic view of Sagami Bay. This view is best observed from the terrace while you enjoy your delicious meal.

    *Fishing Port (in Japanese: Gyoko no Eki, or 漁港の駅) is a registered trademark of Odawara City to highlight facilities that promote exchange with Odawara Fishing Port. (Registered Trademark No.: 6163121).

    Odawara Fishing Port sells fresh fish sourced from the waters of Sagami Bay, which houses a variety of fish species, as well as fish and processed marine products from around Japan. TOTOCO Odawara will sell these very same products, all delivered directly from the port, to help spread the fishing culture and economy of Odawara.

     

    Let’s take a look at some of the delicious gourmet seafood meals you can expect to tuck into at TOTOCO Odawara!

    Totomaru Summit Bowl – ¥2,480

    A hearty and towering dish so high that it looks like it might topple over.

    Greedy Sea Urchin Eggs & Salmon Roe Bowl – ¥4,280

    A dream combination you’ve been waiting for your entire life. Savour the richness and sweetness of both of these mouth-watering delights.

    Oyster Egg Donburi Set – ¥1,680

    You can’t even see the rice any more for the pile of tasty oyster eggs, with their exquisitely soft texture.

    Osashimi Tengoku – Odawara Kaisen GO GO

    The third floor of the building is home to Osashimi Tengoku – Odawara Kaisen GO GO, a restaurant that calls itself “Sashimi Heaven” and offers a 59 minute all-you-can-eat buffet of fish, sides, desserts and more.

     

    59 Minute All-You-Can-Eat
    Adults – ¥2,590 / Children (Elementary School & Younger) – ¥1,390 / 3-Years & Younger – Free (All Prices Before Tax)

     

    Gyoko no Eki TOTOCO Odawara is easily reachable from Tokyo and right next to the local station. If you’ve come to Japan looking to try the country’s famous seafood, then make sure to put this place on your list.

  • 10 Things You Can Do at the MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS Hotel in Harajuku | Foodie Edition

    13.November.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS is a hotel accommodation service run by MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON located in Harajuku and bookable via Airbnb. Our hotel isn’t just popular for sleep, however: it has become a hot spot with stylish girls who get together and use it as a party space. 

     

    Today we’ll be looking at the different ways you can have fun when staying at our pink paradise room SAKURA. 

     

    Girls’ Night In Edition: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/262308

    Birthday Party Edition: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/264752

     

    【8】Extend your adventures to the rooftop 

    The rooftop of MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS can be used freely by our guests. There are tables and chairs and even a hammock so make yourself comfortable. We particularly recommend spending a morning here. Enjoy bathing in the morning light on our spacious rooftop right below the clouds and make some good memories eating breakfast with your friends. 

    *Please note that the rooftop is not accessible when booked.

    MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS is located near a number of breakfast foodie favorites including Bread, Espresso & and whyte which have made their fame on Instagram. How about a baked good and a drink to enjoy on the rooftop with your friends?

     

    【9】Barbeque it up on the rooftop with zero preparation

    There is still more to your rooftop adventures. There is a barbeque course which you can enjoy without having to prepare anything at all. The barbeque course includes meat, fish, vegetables, dessert and even more luxurious dishes. The course even comes with a selection of drinks so you can spend less time preparing and more time enjoying.

    This course is available to book for groups of six people or more. You can even invite your friends who are not staying at MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS so feel free to invite many people. Find out more about what’s on the menu here

     

    【10】Feast out with your foodie friends near MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS: Recommendations from locals

    Where do the locals and people working in Harajuku choose to eat out? As our office is located in Harajuku, we have plenty of knowledge to share with you:

     

    Okonomiyaki at Sakura Tei

    Just a five-minute walk from MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS lies the Okonomiyaki restaurant Sakura Tei. From the beautiful interior decoration and wonderful atmosphere to the delicious food, this restaurant should be on your food adventure list. As many foreigners eat here, the staff can even speak in multiple foreign languages. Make use of Sakura Tei’s simple guide on how to make okonomiyaki and put your skills to the test. 

     

    KAWAII MONSTER CAFE TOKYO

    KAWAII MONSTER CAFE TOKYO is one of the landmarks of Harajuku. Welcome to the vivid world of bright pop colours where you will be staring in awe at everything from the decorations to the food and drinks. Some of the crazy meals to satisfy your kawaii cravings include rainbow pastas and cakes. Don’t leave without getting your hands on some KAWAII MONSTER CAFE-limited merchandise! Your meal will also be interrupted by the Monster Girls who will put on an incredibly fun performance for you. 

     

    Gonpachi Nori-Temaki

    Seaweed from the well-established shop Maruyama Nori and only the freshest and luxurious fish is used to make these temaki sushi. The seafood used in these temaki sushi rolls is of a quality that you won’t find at a conveyor belt sushi restaurant so if you are looking for a new experience of sushi, make sure to stop by.

     

    cafe Hohokam

    If your burger cravings get to you then cafe Hohokam is for you. The interior is spacious and there is even terrace seating, creating a refreshing atmosphere. From mozzarella to barbeque to cheese, the menu is full of different flavours and is filling enough to leave any foodie fully satisfied.

     

    Harajuku Ice Cream Shops

    Harajuku is a kawaii ice cream shop hot spot. The shops serve up a range of toppings and will fill your cone with heaps of colours and fun flavours. A trip to an ice cream shop in Harajuku is an adventure in itself. When you’re done with dinner and the sweet cravings kick in, let the kawaii ice cream shops of Harajuku be your saviour. 

     

    MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS is located at the heart of Harajuku and is surrounded by great places to shop, eat, sightsee and much more. Enjoy a stay at MOSHI MOSHI ROOMS and embark on a wild Harajuku adventure.

  • Instagram Launches #MY TOKYO IS Campaign With Tokyo Metropolitan Government

    12.November.2019 | SPOT

    Instagram launched a campaign with the Tokyo Metropolitan Government entitled “#MY TOKYO IS” on November 11 together with three limited-time stamps that can be used on people’s Instagram stories.

    The campaign is a global initiative to have people capture their favourite moments in Tokyo in the form of photos, videos and stories on Instagram. Shared posts will be used to curate places and scenery in Tokyo that the Tokyo Metropolitan Government want to showcase to the people of the world. This curation will take the form of an exhibitionーwhich will take place at GINZA ATRIUM on floor 6F of GINZA SIX and GINZA TSUTAYA BOOKS in late March 2020ーas well as a website and a book.

     

    Statistics have shown that Instagram has a significant influence on the Japanese economy in terms of tourism, and so the Tokyo Metropolitan Government hopes that this interactive campaign will help to promote the city to tourists and travellers worldwide.

    The stamps created as part of the campaign only appear in the tray when you’re in the city of Tokyo. When you click the stamp, the #MYTOKYOIS search result page will be displayed, allowing you to see the other photos and videos posted by the people who have used the campaign hashtag.

    If you’re in Tokyo, then be sure to get involved in the campaign and show the world your favourite things about the city!

  • BABYMETAL Collaborates On Fashion Designer Yohji Yamamoto’s Ground Y Collection

    08.November.2019 | FASHION / MUSIC / Uncategorized

    2019 is the year of BABYMETAL, with their latest album METAL GALAXY having dropped in October and making them the highest Japanese group/artist to place on the Billboard Top 200 in the US in 56 years. As they continue knee-deep in their ongoing world tour, you might be wondering what else they have in the pipeline.

     

    Well, we can confirm that for you right here and now: they have teamed up with internationally-lauded Japanese fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto on his revolutionary Ground Y collection which boasts a genderless and ageless style.

    Pre-sales of the collection will take place at the new Shibuya PARCO which is set to open on November 22. This will be followed by sales at GINZA SIX, Laforet Harajuku, and the online store THE SHOP YOHJI YAMAMOTO.

    The collection will bring together the unique world of BABYMETALーa band which has won love the world over and has featured as guest acts on many tours of international artistsーand Yohji Yamamoto, a rebel and innovator in the fashion industry whose DNA is woven into the Ground Y line. The inspiration for this jet black collaborative collection is “galaxy,” an homage to BABYMETAL’s latest record METAL GALAXY.

    There are numerous items in the collection, including a jumbo cut and sewn embroidered with both the BMD FOX APPAREL logoーBABYMETAL’s official apparel brandーand the Ground Y logo. There’s also a big hoodie featuring a 360° print and BABYMETAL’s logo, a draped silk satin long shirt, and more.

     

    MASATOSHI YAMASHIRO snapped the photos in this photoshoot, a Tokyo-based photographer who started his career in LA and New York and works with fashion magazines, advertisements, and more.

  • Laforet Harajuku Announces 2019 Christmas Market, Menu & More

    05.November.2019 | FASHION / FOOD

    Laforet Harajuku is set to hold LAFORET CHRISTMAS 2019 from November 15 to December 25. Stores throughout the shopping centre will sell various holiday season fashion items that make perfect Christmas gifts, and up on the second floor at GOOD MEAL MARKET, you can look forward to the Laforet Christmas Menu.

    All customers who spend over ¥3,000 (tax included) from November 15 onward will receive an original mirror, and those who spend over ¥5,000 (tax included) from December 14 onward will receive an original handkerchief. Both of these items will be available on a first-come, first-served basis until December 1 at Dinalog in Laforet Museum Harajuku.

     

    Additionally, the main Christmas visual for this year’s event was designed by Japanese art director YUNI YOSHIDA.

     

    A two-day market will take place on Saturday December 14 and Sunday December 15 in Laforet Museum Harajuku titled Laforet Market vol.9 “Christmas.”

     

    CHRISTMAS GIFT

    If you’re searching for the perfect surprise gift to friends, family, a special someone or yourself, you’re bound to find a fitting match for them during the event as stores in Laforet Harajuku display their Christmas goods in their windows.

     

    Kailijumei/5F

    Kailijumei 2019 Christmas Coffret – ¥5,500 (Tax Included)

     

    Charles Chaton/4F

    Flower Frill Cushion – ¥5,500 (Tax Included)

     

    JUEMI Syncretic/1F

    e.m.OrganicCollegeStarRing – ¥24,200 (Tax Included)

     

    Les Merveilleuses LADURÉE/1F

    Limited Edition Rose Ladurée – ¥13,200 (Tax Included)

     

     

    CHRISTMAS FOOD “Laforet Christmas Menu”

    “Pink” is the themed of the Christmas menus being whipped up at Laforet’s restaurants.

     

    Chipoon /2F

    Tomato Soy Milk Cream Noodles – ¥935 (Tax Included)

    This vegan noodle dish combines the full-bodied taste of soy milk with refreshing tomatoes to create a tempting mild flavour.

     

    machi machi /2F

    Strawberry Cheese Tea (Taro Topping) – ¥858 (Tax Included)

    A fusion of Jasmine green tea and fresh strawberries to create a unique and delicious beverage.

     

     

    Cafe de paris /B1F

    Kumono Smoothe – ¥605 (Tax Included) / Whipped Cream Topping +¥110 (Tax Included)

    Cafe de paris opened on November 1 and will be selling their exclusive cute drinks.

     

    Laforet Market vol.9 “Christmas”

    The Laforet Market is an opportunity for 40 shops to come together to sell fashion, food and miscellaneous Christmas goods. There will be workshops carried out be creators and artists, performances, and more.

     

    If you’ll be in Harajuku the holiday season then don’t pass up the opportunity to visit Laforet Harajuku this Christmas.

  • Sightseeing in Ise: 4 Must-Visit Souvenir Shops Near Ise Grand Shrine

    02.November.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    The city of Ise is located in central Mie Prefecture on the eastern tip of Kii Peninsula, the largest peninsula on Japan’s largest main island Honshu. Every year, the autumn season brings in a flurry of tourists and sightseers who flock to see the city’s leaves expressing their vibrant hues of red and yellow. The city boasts a magnificent catalogue of sightseeing spots, but perhaps the most famous of all is Ise Grand Shrine, whose inner and outer shrine give visitors a sense of what the townscape looked like in ancient times. This can also be seen at Sarutahiko Shrine, amongst other places.

     

    In this article, we’re going to introduce you to 4 must-visit souvenir shops near the inner shrine for your Ise travel bucket list.

     

    Amano Pearl

    When talking about specialty products of Ise, the one thing that’s sure to come to the minds of Japanese people are the pearls sold in the city. Amano Pearl can be found in Oharaimachi, an almost 1km long street lined with traditional shops. The owner themselves purchases and appraises the pearls while the shop staff manufacture and design gorgeous accessories to sell at an affordable price.

    Accessory – ¥2,200

    This rose-shaped necklace is a design favoured by women of all ages. They have plenty of other high-quality bargain picks like this too.

    The shop’s diverse line-up of beautifully accessories includes those perfect for combining with one pieces and dresses, as well as for parties. Prices and designs vary greatly, so there’s bound to be something for everyone who steps inside this quaint store. So if you’re shopping for souvenirs during your trip to Ise, then you absolutely have to pay a visit to Amano Pearl to see the city’s famous pearls.

     

    ▶︎Amano Pearl – Oharaimachi Branch

    Address: 45 Ujiimazaikechō, Ise, Mie

    Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00

    No Fixed Holidays

    Official Website: https://www.amanopearl.jp/

     

     

    Matsujiro Honey – Ise Oharaimachi Branch

    Matsujiro Honey is a long-standing honey shop that was established back in 1912. The shop sells various varieties of honey, including flavours you won’t find in supermarkets like apple honey and soba honey.

    Hanabana – ¥864

    Hanabana is the shop’s No. 1 most popular variety of honey and it’s made in Mie Prefecture. Its name in Japanese means “flowers,” and as the name suggests, it includes the nectar of numerous types of flowers. It has a smooth texture and distinct full-bodied floral fragrance.

    Centre: Mini Honey Soap – ¥503 / Right: Honey Soap – ¥2,200 / Left: ¥2,200 Honey Face & Body Oil (48ml) – ¥2,200

    The shop even sells its own honey-imbued cosmetics, all made with natural ingredients. Their soap is made with their popular Hanabana honey, and gives off a flavoursome honey smell. Your skin is left smooth, moisturised and smelling great after using it.

    Their rich honey oil too is made with 90% plant-derived oil and is free from preservatives. It’s a great option for the coming dry season and is gentle on the skin.

     

    If you visit the shop, they let you taste test their different types of honey too! Find your favourite.

     

    ▶︎Matsujiro Honey – Ise Oharaimachi Branch

    Address: 7 Ujinakanokirichō, Ise, Mie

    Opening Hours: 10:00-17:00

    No Fixed Holidays

    Official Website: https://www.matsujiro.shop/

     

     

    Uoharu

    Uroharu first opened its doors in 1931. Their products are sold as souvenirs to help spread the word of Ise’s rich food culture.

    Same No Tare – Salt Flavour / Mirin Flavour

    The item you absolutely want to look out for when going into Uohara is their “Same No Tare,” another Ise speciality. It was originally only eaten in Shima, Ise, but it was picked up on national television, leading it to become a food souvenir associated with Ise.

    Uoharu’s products are seafood based, and there’s plenty to choose from. If you’re looking for a food product specifically from Ise then look no further than Uoharu.

     

    ▶Uoharu

    Address: 49 Ujinakanokirichō, Ise, Mie

    Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00 (*Changes depending on season)

    Closed: Wednesdays (Except on national holidays in which case closed on Thursdays)

    Official Website: https://www.samenotare.jp/uoharu/

     

     

    Henbaya – Oharaimachi Branch

    Yet another speciality product of Ise comes from the much-beloved Henbaya, which first opened way back in 1775. The speciality products, also called “henbaya,” can be ordered either for takeout or enjoyed in the shop.

    Henbaya (Includes 2) – ¥160

    Henbaya are thin, round sticky rice cakes made with top of the range domestic ingredients and packed with smooth red bean paste. Both sides of these deliciously fragrant rice cakes are browned, and when bitten into, fill and melt in your mouth with the sweet, smooth flavour of the bean paste.

    At the Oharaimachi branch of Henbaya they sell various other rice cakes too, all chewy and made with high quality ingredients from Japan. Pick up a pair and enjoy the sweet taste of Ise.

     

    ▶︎Henbaya – Oharaimachi Branch

    Address: 1-149-1 Ujiurata, Ise, Mie

    Closed: Mondays (Except on national holidays in which case closed on Tuesdays)

    Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00 (Eating in-store runs until 16:30)

    *Products may sell out before 17:00

    *Opening hours subject to change for January

     

     

    So, if you’re making a trip to the beautiful city of Ise, you now know the must-visit spots for finding souvenirs. Let us know if you visit any!

  • Kyoto Sightseeing | Yokokuji Temple’s Autumn Event Schedule Announced

    30.October.2019 | SPOT

    Yanagidani Kannon, also known as Yokokuji Temple, is located in Kyoto Prefecture’s city of Nagaokakyo and has been used as a place of prayer for many people with eye disease since the Heian Period. It is believed that praying at the temple will cure eye disease.

     

    For autumn-time this year, the temple is set to hold an event titled “Yanagidani Kannon Autumn Colours Week” from November 2 to December 1. With a seasonal schedule that includes illuminations in the gardens to a flower display at the temple water basin, if you’re looking for the must-visit locations in Kyoto this autumn, then you’ll want to add Yokokuji Temple to your list.

     

    Jodoen Garden Illuminations

    Last year’s popular light-up event is making a return for 2019, with gorgeous illuminations developed by light designer Yuuki Kogawa which will brighten the area with an enchanting and mystifying aura different from a usual visit to the garden.

     

    Dates: November 8th, 15th, 22nd-23rd

    Time: 17:30-18:30  (Reception open from 17:00)

    Price: ¥2,500 (Includes limited edition goshuin stamp)

    No. of People: 20 (Bookings Only)

    Bookings: https://yanagidani.jp/contact/

     

    Special Opening of the Joshoin

    Normally, the Joshoin only opens on the 17th of every month, but for this autumn week event, it will be open every day. It’s an area normally limited to officials and those in the imperial family. The beauty of its autumn colours have come to be enjoyed by VIPs, dating back to the pre-war period when it was designated as a place of scenic beauty.

     

    Hanachomizu Flower Water Basin

    At every temple and shrine in Japan there is a water basin which you are to use to cleanse yourself before entering. The Hanachomizu has become hugely popular on social media since the name first appeared 3 years ago, where leaves and flowers are placed into the basin. It has become adopted at temples across the country, with the one at Yokokuji Temple starting the trend. When it was first posted onto social media, it received reactions from over 80,000 people both in Japan and overseas. The flowers used change with the seasons, from hydrangeas to maple leaves.

     

    Limited Edition Goshuin Stamp Book Designs – Garasha Matsuri & More

    Visitors will be able to pick up limited-edition goshuin stamp books which never fail to sell out whenever they are released. Goshuin are collectable stamps/seals at temples around Japan. They are ¥500 each and limited in stock.

    This is just a small peek into what’s to come during Yanagidani Kannon Autumn Colours Week. If you’re in Kyoto, make sure you pay a visit to Yokokuji Temple.

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