After church in Hiroshima one day (1.13.2013), my friends and I decided to visit a cat cafe! In Japan, you can go to these cafes, wash your hands, order some food/drinks, and pet cats! You pay by the half hour, hour, or time you stay (in addition to paying for food and drink). I’ve been to a cat cafe before, but never a “normal” one, so this was my first experience with the type of cat cafe you are more likely to encounter…
Those of you that followed my last blog know that I have actually been to a cat cafe before, when I was studying abroad in Tokyo. To summarize, that cafe was in some really out-of-the-way part of Tokyo that no one ever goes, my apartmentmate and some guy were the only customers there, the cats were a little crazy, and if you wanted tea you had to open the fridge and serve yourself tea from convenience-store plastic bottles. Haha, umm, yeah.
I’m not sure exactly how to get to this cafe–we walked from the church, took a bus, and when we got off we were right across the street from the cafe. Here it is on a map (“Cafe Maneki-neko”):
This cafe was a little more legit than the last one. To begin with, it had a real “cat introduction” page, with the names and breeds of all the cats there. At the front entrance of the store, there were shelves lined with postcards of the different cats at this cafe–I guess it would be a memento by which to remember your favorite cat.
Another thing that made this cat cafe more like what I was expecting were all the sleeping cats. I’d heard that the cats in cafes that are more popular tend to get tired out and just sleep a lot, and these cats did just that. I think every cat in the whole cafe was sleeping, except for the grey one that we kind of woke up. I’m not sure exactly how many cats there were at the cafe, but you can get an idea from the above picture. Some of the cats were “on break” when we got there (we came pretty late, around 4 or 5 pm on a Sunday), so there were only about 6 or 7 cats in the cafe when we showed up. The cafe is pretty small, too, so it’s amazing they’ve got so many cats in there…
As a result, our pictures were turning out something like this:
This next one is the one we woke up. Behind me, where that blue light/window is behind my head, is the entrance. If that white curtain on the left were open, you’d be able to see the room where we had our melon sodas and petted sleepy cats for a half hour. It’s not a super big place, but we had fun!
My conclusion: I had a really good time here, because I love cats even if they’re all sleeping, and it was fun being there with friends. I have to say that petting Charles is the best, though–he really raises the bar for all other cats. I feel like Charles could run his own cafe; but I think that all cat cafe experiences are good experiences, and that anyone who’s not allergic should try it!