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2015 Spring issue VOL.15

SPECIAL FEATURE 1

SPECIAL FEATURE 2


In Ha r mony w it h t he Sea sons Haru no Doyo, Traditional Days of Spring: Around April 17-May 4

text & coordination/ Rieko Ido, photo/ Hajime Watanabe 文とスタイリング=井戸理恵子、 写真=渡辺肇

Tea and sweets made of ingredients that moisturize the skin and quench thirst—perfect for Haru no Doyo.

よ み 楽

4月17日~5月4日頃

春の土用

し む

Doyo days occur four times a year. In springtime, people are believed susceptible to colds during the doyo period, with liver functions weakening and unbalanced conditions in both mind and body, based on the belief that the God of the earth gains power and takes as he pleases from the pleasant weather.

People used to believe that the deity stayed near the kitchen stove, and that it would be angered by unnecessary flashes of sharp objects and prompt body chills and ill health. So the wisdom of the people of days past teaches us not to become careless

during the 18 days before the coming of summer, regardless of how warm the weather may be, and to keep the body warm and to replenish it with fluids. Rieko Ido A graduate of Kokugakuin University, researcher of ancient Japanese customs and knowledge, conducting technical analysis on findings to apply them to modern lifestyles.Currently teaches at Tama Art University.

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※日本文化の魅力を世界に発信する「WAttention Tokyo」  事業は東京都中小企業振興公社の推奨事業です。

Why WAttention ? WAttention is named so with the hope that people in the world would pay more Attention to WA (和); an important term in Japanese culture meaning harmony with nature, peace and even Japanese culture itself!

VOL.15

世界中の人々に「和」 (WA)に注目(Attention) してほしいという 願いを込めてWA+Attention= WAttentionと名づけました。

F E AT U R E

Publisher

WA Experience 03

In Harmony with the Seasons

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Letter from the Publisher

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Tokyo Hot News

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Must-Buy Japanese Beauty Products

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Feature 1

Yasuko Suzuki / WATTENTION CO., LTD. Editorial Team Ayako Sogo, Esra Krabbe Design Team Graphic Designer Kay Wu Photographer Kenji Sugasawa, Keiji Okazaki, Hajime Watanabe Partners

WA Experience

Global Daily Co., Ltd.

16 ways to experience Japan in 2015

Sales & Marketing

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Okura Art China: A Long Association With Royalty

Kikuko Yano, Akihiro Shimomura

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Feature 2

Special thanks

Welcome to Tochigi, a Land of World Heritage

Rieko Ido (advisor), Miki Onishi, Emily Baxter, Megumi

and Great Nature

Feyen, Charles Chen, Ian Nagata, Tor Ching Li

A Short Trip from Tokyo – Special Features of Tochigi

広告・記事に関するお問い合わせは 和テンション株式会社

Nasu – A Popular Summer Getaway to Refresh the Mind 24 26

〒150-0002 東京都渋谷区渋谷2-3-8 倉島渋谷ビル401号

Niru , a key technique in Japanese cuisine at Kurumaya

Phone : 03-6418-5701 / Fax : 03-6418-5704

Larger than Life: Robot Restaurant

E-mail : info-tokyo@wattention.com

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Kobe Beef, cooked to perfection at Kawamura

シンガポール事務所 Minook International (S) Pte Ltd

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Tokyo Must Do

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Words of Japan

2B Craig Road Singapore 089662 Phone : 65-6324-2127 ロサンゼルス事務所 Team J station, Inc. 2383 Lomita Blvd., Suite 114 Lomita, CA.90717 Phone : 1-310-782-8279

Spring 2015

Letter from the Publisher In this issue of WAttention you will find a feature article that introduces the world of WA-和 , which is also the theme of our magazine in general. WA stands for calmness and serenity, and forms the roots of everything Japanese. Feel and breathe WA yourself by trying out the experiences and shopping introduced in this article. This issue also features our new serialized article Words of Japan for the first time, in which

Don't miss out!

contemporary Japanese calligrapher Miki Onishi takes you on a journey to discover the beauty of the Japanese language. In her first entry, she discusses the Japanese spirit through phrases that use WA as part of them. We sincerely hope that you can get a glimpse of the aesthetic world of WA through this issue. Publisher Yasuko Suzuki

Subscribe to WAttention Tokyo

Please fill out and fax to 03-6862-6760 or email to info-tokyo@wattention.com. We will reply within a few days.

You'll never miss an issue of WAttention Tokyo with home delivery. Order now and the magazine will be at your home. [WAttention Tokyo 定期送付のご案内] 配布エリア外にお住いの方や、毎号お読みになりたい方のために定期 送付いたします。

Four issues a year / only 1,000 yen Name Address Postcode Tel Email

: : : : : Prices listed in this issue are exclusive of tax.

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TOKYO HOT

EWS

Bringing you the latest hot news.

Q-Plaza to open in fashion mecca, Harajuku Q-Plaza is an upcoming commercial facility in Tokyo’s fashion district, Harajuku. The facility is planned to open in March and will be located on Meiji-Dori, a long, leafy promenade that connects Omotesando to Shibuya with the Meiji-Shrine close by. As the fashionable architecture design of the building shows, Q-Plaza will mainly be a fashion-related shopping area, but will also contain other types of stores such as a café and a flower shop. The concept of the facility is “THE WORLD STANDARD FASHION” and trendy items are planned to be offered at a reasonable price. URL: http://www.qplaza.jp/harajuku/ (Japanese)

Chic sakura viewing at “Midtown Blossom 2015” from March 20 to April 19 Mixed-use development in Roppongi welcomes Japan’s renowned sakura (cherry blossom) in a chic fashion. Enjoy a total of more than 150 sakura of eight varieties, ranging from the standard someiyoshino to the weeping yaebeni-shidare with elegantly falling branches at the Midtown Garden Sakura Promenade or while having a drink at the Garden Terrace during the event. Savor Italy’s most refined sparkling wine “MARTINI” together with The Ritz Carlton Tokyo’s delicate pâté and rillettes or sakura-inspired sweets while enjoying the fairy-tale-like, lit-up sakura at night. On March 30, free sparkling wine will be given to the first 500 customers at the Canopy Square on the plaza’s first floor, so be sure to arrive early if you are visiting on that day!

Tokyo Midtown URL: http://www.tokyo-midtown.com/jp/about/press/midtown_blossom_2015.pdf (Japanese)

Theme park Tokyo One Piece Tower to conquer Tokyo in March! World-famous Japanese manga and anime series “One Piece” will have its first themed attraction park in March, 2015, located at Tokyo Tower’s Foot Town (Tokyo Tower ground floor). Tokyo One Piece Tower will entertain visitors with attractions and live entertainment starring Luffy, Zoro, Chopper and other characters from the series. There will be One Piece-themed restaurants and cafés, and souvenir shops will sell original One Piece goods.

URL: http://onepiecetower.tokyo/ (Japanese)

WAttention series, now available at issuu Missed any back issues or want to read all of our international editions? All WAttention editions from a total of 10 countries can now be viewed online at the free publication site, issuu. WAttention’s original content is now just a tap or click away with this new app!

URL: https://issuu.com/wattention

©尾田栄一郎/集英社・ フジテレビ ・東映アニメーション ©Amusequest Tokyo Tower LLP

Japan’s second LCC-dedicated flight terminal at Narita Airport Tokyo’s main international airport, Narita will get a third terminal as of April 8, 2015. Narita’s new budget terminal will be Japan’s second LCC-dedicated terminal after Kansai International Airport and is expected to handle over 7.5 million passengers and up to 50,000 flights a year. The terminal will also feature the nation’s biggest airport food court with over 400 seats and a total of 7 restaurants that will offer a wide variety of food, from sushi to noodles. Convenience store Lawson will be at your service 24 hours a day as well, and unique souvenirs can be purchased at duty-free store Fa-So-La DUTY FREE.

Narita Airport URL: http://www.narita-airport.jp/en/index.html

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Finally!

The flavours of Milan reach Japan!

Milan’s homegrown gelato specialty shop gelateriamarghera has opened its first overseas store in Azabu Juban, Tokyo. Now you can get a taste of the Italian lifestyle with a daily dose of the rich yet healthy flavours of gelato! Long queues form every day at Gelateriamarghera - be it couples coming after dinner or youth on the way home from a bar, the shop is always full of fans of all ages. The secret to its popularity is no doubt its wide range of flavours using the freshest ingredients of the season. Since it first opened shop, ‘artigianale’ (artisanal) and traditional methods have been used to keep the creamy softness, gorgeous appearance and healthy taste of gelato. Why not do as those born in Milan do and enjoy a gelato a day? Say ‘ciao’ to the tasty life!

Gelateriamarghera Azabu Juban

Gelateriamarghera Atre Ebisu

Address: 2-5-1 Azabu Juban, Minato, Tokyo Access: A 4-min walk from Azabu Juban Exit 4 (Namboku, Toei Oedo Line) Tel: 03-5772-3283 Hours: 11:30~22:30

Address: Atre Ebisu 3F, 1-5-5 Minami Ebisu, Shibuya, Tokyo Access: Ebisu station (JR, Hibya Line) Tel: 03-5475-8409 Hours: 10:00~21:30

http://gelateriamarghera.jp/

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Must-Buy Japanese Beauty Products

Vol. 01

Healthy and beautify hair starts from the scalp! Tired of tired-looking hair that’s limp and lacks luster and is dry and damaged? Scratching your head over how to stop hair loss? The root of these problems actually lies with the health of your scalp. With a clean and healthy scalp that’s not too oily or too dry, lustrous and shiny hair springs forth. WAttention’s editors put their scalps together after several washes to recommend three shampoos from Japan; all are chemical-free, using mainly plant extracts that will revive your scalp and rejuvenate your hair.

Scalp Care

For that extra lift and body Of cosmetics Soap of Hair 1-RO This scalp-care shampoo comprises the natural essence of 23 types of Japanese, Chinese and Western plants such as edelweiss, soybeans, loquat leaves and aloe vera, which are known for their medicinal effects to strengthen the suppleness of skin and scalp. Enriched with oat amino acid, it also effectively repairs any damage. Refresh your soul with the aroma of a fresh bouquet of roses with while reinvigorating your scalp with this Rose series of Soap of Hair.

Contains φkeratin which is known to be very effective for repairing hair damage and restoring shine.

Of cosmetics’ products are all-natural and organic, with no added preservatives. Editor’s comments

4,104 yen (including tax) for 265ml

I was surprised by the very natural, delicate scent of roses during the hair wash, it was as if I had walked into a flower shop. My hair really felt softer, smoother and lighter afterwards!

Available at Of cosmetics Ginza Showroom Ginza 6-3-2 Gallery Centre Bldg 3F, Chuo-ku, Tokyo Also anailable at Tokyu Hands and major department stores

http://www.ofcosmetics.co.jp (Japanese)

Natural blend of hand-picked ingredients THREE scalp & hair shampoo AC Contains 95% naturally-derived ingredients.

THREE Scalp & Hair focuses on scalp care with the basic steps of cleansing oil, then rich, serum-like shampoo and conditioner. Its silicon-free formulation and use of botanical ingredients leaves hair that with a smooth texture and a pleasure to touch. If you like spicy and reinvigorating scents, this shampoo is for you. It contains sweet orange oil, tea tree oil and frankincense oil, and Japanese apricot water and hot spring water, to name a few of the natural hand-picked ingredients.

250 ml for Y2,600 (including tax) Available at its flagship store at Aoyama 3-12-13 Kita Aoyama, 1F – 2F, Minato-ku, Tokyo Also anailable at major department stores

http://www.threecosmetics.com (Japanese)

Editor’s comments The shampoo formed a fine and thick foam just after a gentle lather and I felt like my scalp was getting a thorough cleansing. The spicy scent was nicely invigorating. I felt like my hair was at a spa!

Goodness of Herbs MARKS&WEB Herbal Amino Shampoo Relax This is a blend of biodegradable amino acids and rich lathering soap that is gentle to the scalp yet harsh on dirt and excess oil. The rich rather that forms makes it easy to run your fingers through your hair for a thorough cleanse. This shampoo contains sweet scented geranium and chamomile to help you relax and wash away any worries!

Editor’s comments I really liked the geranium and chamomile fragrance and light feeling of my hair after the wash. The results were even better when I used it together with the conditioner of the same series.

Made with the needs of permed and coloured hair in mind.

972 yen (including tax) for 250ml Available at Omotesando Hills and other shopping malls http://www.marksandweb.com (Japanese) *No international shipment *No duty-free shopping *The price of this product is as of March 2015.

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WA Experience 和を体験する

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ways to experience Japan in 2015 With the weaker yen, it’s a great time to discover

of Japan’s fascinating culture, both traditional

this country of contrasts and contradictions –

and modern. From tea ceremonies to maid

and to try something different than just food

cafes, public baths and Kendo trials, we’ve put

sampling in the supermarket basement. Impress

together a list of 16 memorable ways to get to

your friends back home with these 16 ‘Wa’ (和

taste, touch and try Japan. So ‘wa’-t are you

=Japan) experiences that will give you a taste

waiting for?

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Bringing the Japan Brand to the rest of the world

First, the MORE THAN PROJECT Experience

Mount Fuji, sushi, samurai and geisha – that’s what typically comes to mind when one mentions Japan. And perhaps men in black suits. But even these men in black suits at the Japanese government want to shake up this stereotypical image of Japan and flaunt the country’s hidden allures: local traditional crafts and delicacies, fashion and cutting-edge technology. And so a new project aptly named the MORE THAN PROJECT was born last year to allow you to experience ‘Wa’ even outside of Japan. From Arita to Paris Arita Porcelain Lab Paris Washoku (Japanese cuisine) was added as an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 2013. As the Japanese eat with their eyes, a major part of the experience is the exquisite Japanese porcelain tableware on which the cuisine is presented. The small town of Arita in Saga Prefecture is a pioneer in porcelain making in Japan. The first Arita porcelain was exported to European royalty in the 17th century through the Dutch East India Company. Each piece of Arita porcelain is created and painted individually by hand to create a rich and deep radiance. The traditional method of firing at a high temperature of 1300 degrees Celsius for 3 days results in a thin, delicate yet durable finish. Now, Arita Porcelain Lab - which is the modern brand name of Yazaemon Kiln, which has a history stretching back 200 years - is reacquainting Europe with the beauty of Arita porcelain through special events such as sake and sushi tasting events at the Arita Porcelain Lab in Paris.

Way Above Par BIRDY hand-polished bar tools Cars and alcohol aren’t usually a good mix, but this cocktail shaker is a different story. BIRDY is a sleek, hand-polished, stainless steel cocktail shaker made by Toyota subcontractor, Yokoyama Kogyo, in Aichi Prefecture - not far from the main Toyota car factory. This venture started off with the third generation Yokoyama attempting to use the factory’s technology to make a polished metal sake cup to diversify the business. This eventually evolved into a cocktail shaker sourced from Tsubame in Niigata Prefecture, which is a region famous for its utensils industry. The name BIRDY derives from the golf term where a birdie is above par. And Yokoyama says the smoother inside surface of the shaker translates directly to the taste, and holds the taste and aroma of the ingredients much longer. BIRDY launched in November 2013 with their signature cocktail shaker and mixing tin and is now available in Germany, Greece, Australia, Singapore, China and Taiwan. Get a taste of ‘Wa’ precision with this mover and shaker!

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‘Wa’ for ‘Wallpaper’ Tokyo Matsuya Another UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage asset is Japan’s handmade washi (Japanese paper). There are many types of washi - Edo Karakami is handcrafted washi paper for interior use such as for Fusuma sliding doors. It has been handmade by artisans in downtown Tokyo since the Edo era. The paper can also be applied to a wide range of places such as walls, ceilings as well as interior and display items. Tokyo Matsuya will be developing and selling to overseas markets their hand-made Edo Karakami patterned paper for interiors. They are hoping to team up with wholesalers selling interior materials and retailers in Europe, and plan to sell products in a made-to-order style using samples and catalogs, offering more vibrant patterns and personalized designs of Japanese washi paper. ‘Wa’ wallpaper, anyone?

What’s round and cool? Defrosted sushi balls! Mishima Foods Soon, you may be able to enjoy Kyoto’s signature temari sushi (sushi shaped like a ball) fresh out of the freezer. Osaka Prefecture -based Mishima Foods, which received the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Award in 2008, has developed a way to freeze sushi using electromagnetic freezing that will not compromise the original freshness and flavor of the food. Mishima Foods will team up with creative director Kai Hikiji, who spent most of his teenage years in San Diego, to present and promote temari sushi to global consumers. Singapore is the first target market for this, and in the first quarter of the year, these temari sushi will be available at major food courts and restaurants in the city with the help of the Japan Association of Overseas Promotion for Food & Restaurants (JAOF).

It is also this project’s goal to bring out the valuable yet unnoticed treasures of Japan out into the world, especially the numerous small and medium enterprises that are quietly dedicating themselves to perfecting their skills. On top of what has already been mentioned there are other projects, for example, a project that transforms the centuries-old Japanese tenugui cloth into scarves that compliment any outfit (www. kamawanu.co.jp), or a project that uses yarn spinning techniques from the Bishu Region in Aichi Prefecture and the southern areas of Gifu Prefecture to make consumer textile goods like socks and ties (http://www.siffon.net/). There’s also a project that uses Tokushima indigo dye, a natural dye used since 700 years ago, to make indigo speakers, indigo leather items and even indigo food such as tea and candy! Check out their official site for more of these cool Japanese projects: http://morethanprj.com WAttention Tokyo

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Wear WA

gouk Unique, edgy and yet understated, fashion brand gouk is undoubtedly ‘Wa’ fashion at its trendiest. Traditional patterns from the Edo era are woven into new styles, making the label attractive to both locals and foreign clientele. Since January 25 of this year, gouk is collaborating with a different ‘Wa’ artist every three months in a Musubi Project. Don’t forget to pick up your limited edition item!

Rub soap and shoulders with the locals

Myojin-yu public bath A dip in a hot bath after a day’s work is one of life’s simple pleasures for the Japanese. The number of public baths, or sento, have declined after bathrooms became a standard feature in Japanese homes. But you can still partake in this ritual at Myojin-yu public bath in Ohta and have a bathing experience you won’t find at your hotel!

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KINCS (gouk) flagship store ■Hours: 11am-7pm, (closed Sundays)  ■Hours: 4pm-11pm, (closed on the 5th, 15th and 25th of each month) ■Address:

■Address: Azabu 2-22-5, 1F, Minato ■Access: 13-min. walk from Omotesando

Minami-yukigaya 5-14-7, Ohta ■Access: 20-min walk from Yukigaya station

Station (Ginza/Chiyoda/Hanzomon Line) ■URL: http://www.gouk.jp (Japanese) 

(Tokyu Ikegami Line) ■URL: http://www.ota1010.com/e_main.html

http://world.kincs.ws/

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For your skin’s sake

Fukumitsuya Matsuya Ginza Shop

 With nearly 400 years of sake brewing history, Fukumitsuya from Kanazawa knows the benefits that sake can bring to one’s skin. Now, you don’t have to be a sake brewer to have luminous skin – just head to Fukumitsuya’s Matsuya Ginza branch and pick up a few skincare products from beauty supplements to creams and cleansers developed from the sake fermentation process.  Here you can also sample a range of sake and a variety of fermented food items and seasonings, such as premium mirin (cooking sake) and vinegar. There are also non-alcoholic beverages like amazake (sweet sake) and desserts such as sake caramel, sake cream rolls, castella cakes and chocolate liquor, which allow you to enjoy the mildly sweet fragrance of sake. ■Hours: 10am – 8pm  ■Address: Matsuya Ginza 7F 3-6-1 Ginza, Chuo  ■Access: Direct access from Ginza A12 Exit (Ginza/Marunouchi/Hibiya Line)

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Learn Karate from former Japanese world champion

Kyokushin-Kaikan Ogikubo Dojo

Experience Karate like nowhere else by receiving instruction from a former world champion and make Japanese friends while getting sweaty at this local dojo! No minimum fitness or age restrictions. This is a no-brainer for anyone interested in getting to know Japanese culture while burning those calories (reservations required)!

Become a Soba master

Edo Tokyo Soba no Kai Love Soba (buckwheat) noodles? You’re not the only one, as these noodles have been a beloved specialty in Tokyo ever since the Edo period. Edo Tokyo Soba no Kai offers one-day lessons on making your own Soba by hand. See if you’ve got what it takes to become a Soba master (reservations required)!

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■Hours: 19:30 ~ 21:00 (Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday)

■Date: One-day classes are offered in English on Wednesday, Saturday and

■Address: Aonuma 2-4-1 Inoue building San-Gokan 2F, Suginami

Sunday.

■Access: 5-min walk from Ogikubo station (JR Chuo Line, Marunouchi Line)

8, Katsushika ■Access: 5-min walk from Keisei Tateishi Station (Keisei Oshigami

■Reservation: esrakrabbe@hotmail.com

Line)

■URL: http://kkjm.sakura.ne.jp/shikumi/ogikubo (Japanese)

■URL: http://www.edotokyosoba.com/map.html (Japanese)

■Hours: 11am–1:30pm; 3pm–5:30pm ■Address: Higashi Tateishi 3-24-

■Reservation: Send an email to soba@edotokyosoba.com in English.

Get a slice of Japanese knife

Kamata Hakensha When we visited the main Kamata shop on Kappabashi Street, the fourth generation Mr. Kamata was busy at the storefront’s whetstone doing what the family has been specializing in since 1923 — polishing to perfection the cutting edge of a Japanese knife. And that handmade touch is what sets Japanese knives apart from the run-of-the-mill mass-produced knives. The shop also sells 800 different shapes and sizes of Japanese knives. Those featuring Damascus steel, a patterned steel made of alternating layers of cobalt steel and nickel, are especially popular with foreign customers for its intricate design. Name-engraving services are available for free as well. Feel free to ask Mr. Kamata for knife-sharpening tips and maintenance advice at the shop.

■Hours: 10am – 6pm (from Monday to Saturday) 10:30am to 17:50pm (Sundays, public holidays) ■Address: Matsugaya 2-12-6, Taito  ■Access: 8-min walk from Tawaramachi (Ginza line)  ■URL: www.kap-kam.com/index_english.html

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Maid in Japan

Maid Café & Bar maidreamin / @Home Cafe

Try the Way of the Sword

Tokyo Kyumeikan Kendo Dojo This traditional Kendo Dojo with a 58-year history offers trial Kendo lessons in English and Chinese. No minimum fitness or age restrictions. All you need is a sense of fun (reservations required)!

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Get the royal treatment by visiting a maid café in Akihabara. Leave reality at the door as you are greeted by a French maid as a “master” or “mistress” or whatever you wish to be called, really. Enjoy omuraisu (rice omelet) with personalized ketchup messages. Your maid-in-waiting will entertain you with poses and phrases to your fancy. Unleash your inner otaku! @Home Café

■Hours: 11:30am – 10pm (weekdays) 10:30am –

10pm (Saturdays, Sundays, public holidays)

■Address: Soto

Kanda 1-11-4 Mitsuwa Building 4F ~ 7F, Chiyoda 5-min walk from JR Akihabara Station

■Access:

■URL: http://www.cafe-

athome.com/about-english/

Maid Café & Bar maidreamin

■Hours: 11:30am – 10pm (Mondays, Tuesdays) 11:30am – 11pm (Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays) 10:30am – 11pm (Saturdays) 10:30am – 10pm (Sundays, public holidays)

■Address: Soto Kanda

3-16-17 Sumiyoshi Building 6F, Chiyoda

■Access:

■Hours: Flexible with prior notice ■Address: Akatsuka Shinmachi 2-1-7, Itabashi

5-min walk from JR Akihabara Station or 1-min from

■Access: 1-min walk from Chikatetsu Akatsuka (Yurakucho/Fukutoshin Line)

Suehiro Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line)

■URL: http://www.bekkoame.ne.jp/~kyumeikan/homenglish.htm

https://maidreamin.com/

Meguro Gajoen ■Address: Shimo-Meguro 1-8-1, Meguro ■Access: 3-min walk from Meguro Station (JR Yamanote Line West Exit, Tokyu Meguro Line, Nanboku Line, Mita line) ■URL: https://www.megurogajoen.co.jp/english/index.html/

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■URL:

Feel the magic of a Japanese wedding

Meguro Gajoen If you want to feel the atmosphere of a true traditional Japanese wedding, there is no place better to visit than Meguro Gajoen. Originally built in 1931 as a traditional Japanese restaurant, Meguro Gajoen is now the first integrated wedding complex in Japan. Here, there is a chance to catch a glimpse of a traditional Japanese wedding ceremony during the weekends. Boasting exquisite interiors and a beautiful garden, Meguro Gajoen is a great way to feel what Japanese weddings are like just by enjoying these interior decorations, including a banquet hall and a hotel with both western and Japanese rooms. A must-see here is the Hyakudan-kaidan, which was recently designated as a tangible cultural asset in Tokyo. This historical building features 99 steps of zelkova tree and 7 Japanesestyle rooms that were formerly wedding banquet rooms.


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Eat and experience real Japan

Nagomi Visit If you want to experience something “real” in Japan rather than just going after famous tourist spots, nothing is more precious than getting to know the locals and seeing their everyday life. Nagomi Visit offers you the unique opportunity to be invited by a Japanese host for dinner and taste Japan’s everyday dining table while having a blast with your new Japanese friends (reservations required)!

Life in plastic, it’s Fun-tastic!

SAMPLE FAN FUN FAN Make your own original food sample of your favorite Japanese food — be it ramen, tempura, curry rice, parfaits or tarts — and bring it home as a unique souvenir. Don’t eat it by mistake (reservations required)!

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Nagomi Visit

■Hours: 9am–5pm (closed Wednesday and Thursday)

■Regions with hosts available: Throughout the whole country (Hokkaido, Tohoku,

■Address: Kami Ikebukuro 4-25-12, Toshima

Kanto, Chubu, Kansai, Chugoku, Shikoku, Kyushu ■Booking procedures: Book 1

■Access: 5-min. walk from Kita-Ikebukuro Station (Tobu Tojo Line)

week beforehand online. ■URL: http://www.nagomivisit.com/

■URL: http://www.yamato-sample.com/ (in Japanese)

Potter around!

Saideigama

If you are fascinated by Japanese pottery or are just looking for a unique souvenir, the pottery studio in Omotesando, ‘Saideigama’, offers many classes in English. This pottery studio is of the Oribe style characterized by deep shades of green and abstract designs. This is named after Furata Oribe, a warlord and celebrated Japanese tea ceremony master (reservations required).

■Hours: 10am–9pm (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays), 10am–6pm (Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays)  ■Address: Meijijingumae 4-6-2 1F, Shibuya  ■Access: 3-min walk from Omotesando Station (Ginza/Hanzomon/Chiyoda Line)

■URL: http://

saideigama.com/index_eng.html

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Enjoy a spot of tea

Urasenke YOUWAKAI/ HiSUi TOKYO Tea has always played an important role in Japanese culture. The tea ceremony offered a space where samurai and peasant alike were treated as equals. Get a taste of the past at these facilities where you can take part in an authentic tea ceremony with English explanation and get familiar with traditional Japanese customs (reservations required).

Urasenke YOUWAKAI ■Hours: 10am – 9pm (closed Sundays, public holidays)

■Address: Minami

Aoyama 5-1-25 Kitamura Building 2F, Minato

■Access: 30-seconds walk

from Omotesando Station (Ginza/ Chiyoda/Hanzomon Line ) Exit B3 ■URL: www.youwa-kai.com/English/

HiSUi Tokyo ■Hours: 1st session 10:00-13:00 2nd session 13:00-16:00 Ginza 5F Koizumi Building 4-3-13 Chuo

■Address:

■Access: 1-min walk from

Ginza Exit B4, or 4-min from Yurakucho Station (JR Lines) Main Exit ■URL: http://hisui-tokyo.com/visitors

Bean there, done that yet?

OnJapan CAFÉ Located at the trendsetting Harajuku, you can exchange travel tips and read up on the latest at OnJapan CAFÉ, a new concept institution that combines books, good food and coffee, and events such as seminars and trips that will steep you in Japanese culture. Events include sake tastings, cooking lessons, and sushi nail art!

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■Hours: 8am - 10pm (Weekdays), 10am - 9pm (Saturdays, Sundays, holidays)

■Closed: Open everyday

Jingumae 6-8-1, Shibuya

Meijijingumae Station (Chiyoda Line), a 8-min walk from onjapan.tokyo

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Traintastic and trainilicious

Tetsudo Izakaya Little TGV

Japanese have a love for trains. That can be seen at Tetsudo Izakaya Little TGV, a trainthemed restaurant with waitresses dressed as conductresses that serve you train-shaped onigiri and Shinkansen cocktails which you can order from a menu that looks like a train route map. Also, be sure to take a good look at the impressive model railroad that you can observe from your passenger seats!

■Address:

■Access: 5-min walk from

Harajuku Station (JR Yamanote Line)

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■URL: http://www.

■Address: Soto Kanda 3-10-5 Isami Dai-San Building 4F, Chiyoda ■Access: 5-min walk from JR Akihabara Station or 5-min from Suehirocho Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line) ■URL: http:// www.littletgv.com/


Okura Art China:

A Long Association With Royalty The choice of tableware for the Imperial Household and State Guests When Okura Art China was established in 1919 by Magobei Okura and his son, they simply aimed to ‘create the finest chinaware’ that could match up to any renowned Western tableware. Since then, their impeccably exquisite creations, which embody elegance and refinement, have made Okura Art China the tableware of choice for the Imperial Household, and at the State Guesthouses in Akasaka and Kyoto.

Wider range of Okura Art China at Noritake’s renewed Ginza Branch The Noritake Ginza branch which underwent a renewal on February 1 has added one more display shelf for Okura Art China products. With an even wider variety of Japan-made goods in store, such as cutlery, porcelain art, flower vases and such interior products, shopping here has become even more enjoyable. Get inspiration for exquisite and refined table-settings for your guests from the instore displays.

New Lines for Spring 2015 Sakura Series 10,000 yen each Japan’s representative and much-loved blossom, the sakura, is the motif for cups and saucers.

Kissho Sakura 10,000 yen

Decorative Plate (Koi Nobori) 32,400 yen each May 5 is traditionally known as Tango no Sekku or Boy’s Day, to celebrate the happiness and healthy development of children. This plate depicts traditional Japanese kites in the form of carp dancing in the wind, recalling the ancient Chinese tale of a carp that managed to climb against the current of a waterfall and transformed into a dragon.

Featuring bold sakura designs intricately combined with auspicious traditional geometrical patterns such as the kikko design and the shippo design.

Noritake Okura Art China Ginza Store •Hours: 11am – 7:30pm closed during New Year holidays •Address: Ginza 3-4-12 Bunshodo Building 2F, Chuo •URL: http://www.noritake. co.jp/eng/

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Tochigi Tokyo

A SHORT TRIP FROM TOKYO – Special Features of Tochigi

Welcome to Tochigi, a Land of World Heritage and Great Nature

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Nikko Toshogu Shrine

Toshogu’s splendid architecture is designed by artisans from all over Japan. Many of the animal carvings symbolize world peace.

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Lake Chuzenji

Take a stroll or boat ride to enjoy the scenery in this great summer retreat.

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Yunishigawa Onsen

In onsen hotels, guests have the pleasure of enjoying hot spring baths and local delicacies that are served around a fireplace.

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Mt. JEANS Nasu Gondola

Hop on the gondola for a bird’s-eye view of Nasu all season round.

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Shiba Sakura

Admire the pink carpet of sakura flowers at Ichikai-machi Sakura Park. Blooming season is from mid April to mid May.

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A hidden gem within greater Tokyo

check out different flavors of gyozas here.

  Historical sites, gorgeous natural attractions, gourmet cuisines with a local touch, cultural experiences, warm-hearted hospitality, and perhaps most importantly, a great time with your loved ones. Are all of these high on your list of priorities when you visit Japan? If so, Tochigi has them all.

  Moreover, high on my personal favorite list is Yunishigawa, an onsen town that is known for great local cuisines and hot spring baths. Also, I am saving the best sites (Kinugawa, Ashikaga, Tochigi city, and Nasu) for the next few pages, as I will show you in detail how to have the most of fun in these areas.

  Tochigi, a prefecture to the north of Tokyo, may not sound familiar for most of the tourists who are visiting Japan for the first time. In fact, Nikko with its well known Toshogu Shrine is in Tochigi. Thanks to Japan’s efficient transportation system, you can travel from Tokyo to most tourist attractions in Tochigi within two hours, and this makes Tochigi an ideal location for a day trip from Tokyo. Due to its proximity to Tokyo, rather than referring to Tochigi as a stand-alone prefecture, I prefer to include Tochigi in greater Tokyo and refer to it as my weekend secret hideaway from busy metropolitan Tokyo.

  To sum up, Tochigi offers many natural sceneries and world heritage sites, including the famous Nikko Toshogu Shrine. With relaxing hot springs, familyfriendly theme parks, and local cuisines ranging from strawberries to fried dumplings, Tochigi is definitely your ideal destination near Tokyo.

Access from Tokyo

More than Nikko

By JR Tohoku Shinkansen A high-speed railway you can’t afford to miss. Tokyo Station - Utsunomiya Station: approx. 50 mins. Tokyo Station - Nasu-Shiobara Station: approx. 1 hr and 10 mins.

  If you have not wanted to embark on your own discovery of Tochigi, let me convince you with some more recommended itineraries. In doing so, please allow me to leave out the already famous Nikko area and focus on the places that are less traveled.

By JR Shonan Shinjuku Line Direct service connecting Utsunomiya with Yokohama, Shinjuku, and Shibuya. Shinjuku Station - Utsunomiya Station: approx. 1 hr and 45 mins.

  First, you may start your journey with a visit to Utsunomiya, the prefecture capital that is only a 50-minute ride away on the Shinkansen bullet train from Tokyo. The bicycle-friendly city boasts the highest gyoza (dumpling) consumption in Japan, so make sure to

By Tobu Railway Head to Tochigi after having a good time at Asakusa. Asakusa Station - Tobu Nikko Station: approx. 1 hr and 45 mins. Asakusa Station - Kinugawa Onsen Station: approx. 2 hrs.

igi Best of Toch

★World Heritage Site (Shrines and Temples of Nikko) ★World’s longest tree-lined avenue (Cedar Avenue of Nikko) ★Japan’s oldest college (Ashikaga School) ★Japan’s top gyoza (dumpling) consumption (Utsunomiya City) ★Japan’s top strawberry production

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2-Day Trip Day 1

Kinugawa A Trip of Onsen and Theme Parks for Family! Only 2 hours from Tokyo is Kinugawa, historically renowned for onsen, theme parks, and beautiful scenery. Highly recommended for tourists of all ages.

Kinugawa River Boat Rides Don’t miss the thrilling rafting rides from April to November. Professional coaches will guide you down the Kinugawa River, providing interesting commentary. Take Tobu express train from Asakusa Station to Kinugawa Onsen Station, and the boat ride is just a 5-minute walk away from the station. http://linekudari.com/

Kinugawa Onsen After the thrilling boat ride, stay overnight in one of the many onsen ryokans in Kinugawa and enjoy elegant cuisine and soothing onsen. The excellent Japanese hospitality will leave you with memories that will last a lifetime. http://www.kinugawa-onsen.com/

Day 2

Edo Wonderland (Nikko Edo Mura) Oiran Parade Watch this elegant procession of courtesans strolling down the streets.

Live Ninja Theatre Come early to catch the live-action ninjas!

Experience life in the Edo period and watch historical plays in this theme park that restores the olden days of Japan. It takes only 15 minutes by bus from Kinugawa Onsen Station to the theme park. You can spend a whole day having loads of fun here before going back to Asakusa, Tokyo. http://edowonderland.net/

Explore with a Smartphone App Download the multi-language “NYANMAGEYE” app to help navigate and obtain more information. Free Wi-Fi is available in the park. Edo-style Costume Experience Travel through time by dressing up as an Edo citizen.

Scan here!

More to discover! Tobu World Square Travel the world in this theme park that reproduces the world’s most famous attractions. http://www.tobuws.co.jp/default_en.html 20

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Cute Souvenirs Get everything that features Nyanmage, the mascot of Edo Village.


More to discover! Sano Premium Outlets

Ashikaga

Shopping has never been more fun at this western-style mall. http://www. premiumoutlets. co.jp/en/sano/

One-Day Trip A Tour of Flower and Culture The Tobu express train leaving from Asakusa arrives at Ashikaga in only 70 minutes. Take a walk in the Japanese-style streets and enjoy the flower scenery. Ashikaga Flower Park

Ashikaga Meisen Kimono

The prime attraction of the flower park is the Japanese wisteria, which blooms in different colors in spring. You can take Tobu express train from Asakusa Station to Tochigi Station, transfer to JR Ryomo Line, and get off at Tomita Station. The park is about 13-minute walk away from it. Moreover, light-up events are held during winter evenings. http://www.ashikaga.co.jp/english/index.html

The kimono is characterized by its modern design and use of innovative colors. http://www.ashikagadouraku.jp/

Watarase Hot Air Balloon Fiesta

Ashikaga School Take JR Ryomo Line from Tomita Station to Ashikaga Station for our next stop, Ashikaga School. Located at a mere 7-minute walk from the station, Ashikaga School is the oldest college in Japan and also houses the oldest Confucius temple in the country. After visiting Ashikaga School, you can walk 13 minutes to Ashikagashi Station and take Tobu express train to get back to Asakusa, Tokyo. http://www.city.ashikaga.tochigi.jp/site/ashikagagakko/

Held in April, this event is a great time to watch balloons race across the sky. http://www.air-b.com/gp-info/ watarase/watarase-event.htm

Tochigi City

One-Day Trip Travel Back in Time and Explore Japanese Tradition Known as “Kuranomachi�, or the town of storehouses, Tochigi City was once a prosperous commercial center when river transport was common. History and culture are well-preserved here. Tochigi Boat Ride The 20-minute boat ride promises a great experience of sightseeing and traditional music enjoyment. Take Tobu express train from Asakusa Station to Tochigi Station, and the boat ride is about a 10-minute walk away from the station. http://www.k-yuransen.com/

Take a Stroll in Tochigi Kimono Experience At the tourist association, you can rent and put on a beautiful traditional kimono, and take a stroll in the neighborhood (reservation required). http://www.kuranomachi.jp/ Wagashi Lessons Learn to make your own unique wagashi, or traditional Japanese confectionery, at Yamamoto wagashi shop (reservation required). Both wagashi lessons and kimono experience are within walking distance from Tochigi Station. http://yamamotokashi.jp/

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Nasu - A Popular Summer Getaway to Refresh the Mind Take a getaway from Tokyo and enjoy nature’s bounties all year round at Nasu Located in the northern part of Tochigi, Nasu Highlands are well known as the summer resort for many famous poets and writers. Even the Japanese Royal Family visit Nasu Highlands for their summer retreats. Apart from the great nature and magnificent scenery it offers, the highland area is dotted with hot springs that have been favored by many famous people. If you love to be embraced by nature, this is the place to be!

Travel around Nasu on a sightseeing bus Hop on a sightseeing bus at the Yuainomori (Friendly Forest), which also functions as a tourism information center. http://www.nasumirai.com/yuainomori/ index.html Nasu Highlands sightseeing bus “Kyubi” http://nasu-trad.com/ akusesu/syatoru/kyubi. html Yahata Peony Peony blooming season begins in May. Don’t miss out on a walk in the Peony Garden. http://www. tochinavi.net/spot/ home/?id=10465

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The view from Hotel Epinard Nasu

~ Hotel Epinard Nasu Experience a stay abundant with special memories ~  Characterized by its twin towers, Hotel Epinard Nasu is a resort hotel offering a whole range of facilities and service for families and couples to fully unwind in a relaxing environment surrounded by nature.  From open-air baths and a heated indoor pool, to aesthetic salons and Japanese culture experience sessions, there are countless ways to enjoy a special holiday with your special ones. The Japanese, French and buffet restaurant all offer Nasu specialty cuisines. Moreover, guest rooms and the French restaurant located in the top floor offer a bird’s eye view of the Nasu mountain range. Japanese and French cuisine services need to be prepared in advance, and require reservations that can be made together with the room booking.

Plan including retour bus. One night stay with two meals plan including retour bus from Tokyo Station or Ikebukuro Station is available from 14,800 yen.

The most popular buffet consists out of 90 sorts of dishes. Enjoy freshly prepared dishes like sushi, tempura, steak and desserts.

•Address: 1 Takakuhei, Nasu-gun, Nasu-machi, Tochigi •Access: 30 minutes by free shuttle bus from Nasu-Shiobara Station. •TEL: 0287-78-6000 jp/en/

•URL: http://www.epinard.


Nasu Animal Kingdom Wander in the world of cute animals  Feed lovely animals and spend an enjoyable day with your families at one of the most interactive animal theme parks in Japan! Nasu Animal Kingdom offers a rare experience of intimate encounters with animals. Here visitors can feed and touch capybaras, alpacas, kangaroos, penguins, camels, and many other cute animals at close distance.  Moreover, animal shows are held at regular times of the day. Highlights include the bird performance show during which raptors such as eagles and owls exhibit their dynamic moves. Also look out for the aqua friends show featuring multi-talented fur seals performing various stunts. ~

Free pickup bus available from Nasu Shiobara Station, Yuainomori or Hotel Epinard Nasu (reservations required)

•Hours: weekdays 10:00-16:30, weekends 9:00-17:00 (varies by season), closed on Wednesdays •Admissions: Adults 2,000 yen, Children 1,000 yen (varies by season) •Address: Ooshima Midorigaoka, Nasu-gun, Nasu-machi, Tochigi •Access: 70 mins by free shuttle bus (reservation

*A free pickup bus can only be arranged once a day.

required) from Nasu-Shiobara Station. •TEL: 0287-77-1110

*You can take the Kyubi (a shuttle bus) from Hotel Sunvalley Nasu if you are heading for Yuainomori.

•URL: http://www.nasu-oukoku.com/contents/english.html

Hotel Sunvalley Nasu Enjoy a relaxing holiday in a highland resort hotel At Hotel Sunvalley Nasu, there are simply too many ways to spend a memorable holiday. Guests can choose among nine different kinds of accommodation options. Whether it is the forest villa or the oriental garden, there is always something for anyone. After checking in, you can choose your own style of indulgence. Unwind in a hot spring bath that boasts three kinds of spring water, or put on your swimwear and play in the water park. Top off the night with a buffet style dinner that offers 70 dishes featuring local ingredients. Highly recommended for families.

The forest of owls Unwind in one of the stand-alone cottages surrounded by a tranquil forest.

Acua Venus Families or couples can have fun at this water park that features more than 20 facilities, including a lazy river and a Jacuzzi.

•Address: 203 Yumoto, Nasu-gun, Nasu-machi, Tochigi

•Access: 40 mins by free shuttle

bus (reservation required) from Nasu-Shiobara Station.

•TEL: 0287-76-3800

•URL: http://www.

nasu3800.co.jp/english/index.shtml

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“Niru”, a key technique in Japanese cuisine at Kurumaya

Vol.3

In Japanese cuisine, “niru” (boiling) cannot go without dashi, or Japanese soup stock. Japanese simmered dishes all have dashi as the roots of their flavor. Dashi usually consists out of either konbu or bonito fish. Of course the quality of these ingredients is of great importance, but the true key to Kurumaya’s high-quality dashi , is in the detailed procedure the chef carries out, which not only depends on the ingredients and type of dish, but also on the season and weather. Chefs at Kurumaya are proud of their Japanese craftsmanship spirit, and prepare dashi with a degree of detail and care you will not find elsewhere.

The secret of umami, indeed is in the chef’s techniques, but even more so in his heart. With a history of 85 years, Kurumaya is a veteran in the Tokyo cuisine. Umami, or flavor, is the key to all Japanese cuisine. For simmered dishes, the umami is finely adjusted by adding condiments as sugar, salt, mirin, sake and soy sauce. At Kurumaya, chefs are particular about cooking procedures, and each dish is prepared with an incredible amount of care. Chefs consider not only the ingredients, but also the time of the year and weather and take care of the most minute details to make sure that they can deliver you the finest dish. Arani of sea bream’s head A top chef will finely prepare this traditional Japanese simmered dish using the head of a fish Sso that the original taste and texture of the ingredient can be enjoyed rather than adding an artificial taste.

All of the delicate and refined simmered dishes at Kurumaya heavily depend on the dashi. For example, fish, meat and vegetables are simmered in dashi separately to add a fine taste while making sure that the original taste of the ingredient is maintained. At the same time, Japanese hot-pot dish shabu-shabu also uses dashi to soak the thin sliced Japanese Wagyu beef in.

Kurumaya Honten •Address: Kabukicho 2-37-1, Shinjuku •Access: 7-min. walk from JR Shinjuku Station or 3-min. walk from Seibu Shinjuku Station (Western cuisine can also be enjoyed in the basement) •URL: http://www.kuruma-ya.co.jp

Hot-pot dish Shabu-shabu Renowned Japanese hot-pot dish shabu-shabu cannot possibly be found more delicate and refined than at Kurumaya’s. The staff will show you how to soak the thin sliced Japanese Wagyu beef into the hot-pot so that you can enjoy this feast of a meal to the uttermost!

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Bringing the best of Japan to around the world via WAttention Magazines, Website, and Facebook

W What is W WAttention(和テンション) ? WAttention is a coined term containing 和 WA (wa) , which, in Japanese, means peace , (w ca calm and uniquely Japanese , and the wo o word attention . Since wa also has the co co connotation of link , we gave our magazine

THAILAND

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2013.07 launched

tth h name in hopes of bringing more the att a tt attention to wa and making a link between

2013.02 launched

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茶道的學問

東京特選能量景點:成田山新勝寺 東京出發輕旅行:ඌ木縣 東京半日散༜:谷根千 日本元氣溫泉之旅:糠平溫泉中村屋 我的東京私房推薦 by 張維中

TAIWAN

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Larger than Life Robot Restaurant

For an unforgettable night out, why not try the Robot Restaurant in Shinjuku, which was ranked 16th at TripAdvisor out of the Top 30 Most Popular Tourist Destinations for 2014? The experience promises to be a feast for the senses, but don’t expect the food to be the highlight of this ‘restaurant’. That said, a light meal or drink can be purchased separate from the ticket price. Esra Krabbe reports

Much more than only robots

Getting absorbed into a universal Japanese craziness

A show with futuristic robots representing Japan’s high-tech pop-culture was pretty much the idea I had about the Robot Restaurant before my visit. Yes, you will see robots and will indeed encounter modern Japanese culture, but the Robot Restaurant is so much more than just that.

Performers at the Robot Restaurant put an effort in involving the public with all the craziness happening on stage. They do not just come for high-touches and winks, but let you have a boxing match with a giant robot and have you swing a glowstick together with the rhythm while the most mind boggling robots pass by.

Not just Japanese At the Robot Restaurant, you never know what to expect next. Just when you think the show is a futuristic variant of a Japanese festival with energetic girls drumming on Taiko drums and gaudy kimono-clad girls dancing with a traditional parasol guided by hip DJ’s in the middle of red flashing laser lights, the next moment you will be transported to a war between a wild tribe and futuristic robots with machine guns, and just as you adjust to the plot, a giant metallic snake makes a dramatic entrance, just to make you wonder if things could possibly get any more bizarre and hectic than they already are. Being assaulted by so much variety, I came to the conclusion that the show is not 26

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At the end of the show, it didn’t matter anymore if I was a foreigner looking at a Japanese show or not, I just let myself get completely absorbed into this universal Japanese craziness.

Robot Restaurant Time: 16:00-23:00 (Shows: 16:00 / 17:55 / 19:50 / 21:45) 1 show approx. 90 minutes. Address: Kabukicho 1-7-1, Shinjuku

just a Japanese stereotype. While staying very Japanese at its core, it lends aspects from many different cultures to bring over a borderless message, which made me understand why this show is so popular with foreign tourists in the first place.

TEL: 03-3200-5500 Admission: 7,000 yen Access: 5-min. walk from JR and Tokyo Metro Shinjuku Station. URL: http://www.robot-restaurant.com/


VOL.03

The skilled chefs at Kawamura Ginza provide the most premium Kobe Beef, cooked to perfection.

Kobe Beef melts in your mouth  Kobe Beef is prized for its flavor and marbling. Only genuine Kobe Beef, lean with its rose coloring, yet laden with frost-like marbling, is pressed with a Japanese chrysanthemum mark to certify its high quality. When you take a piece of beef that is still steaming and place it into your mouth, it’s soft texture, sweet aroma and the full flavor bring about an unparalleled satisfaction.

Only 10 beef cattle chosen each year are selected as “champion cattle”. We at Kawamura provide nearly all of them.

 Pursued by world-class chefs and celebrities from around the world seeking the taste of high quality beef, and revered by the Japanese cattle owners who raise them, Kobe Beef is definitely a “must-eat” when visiting Japan.  Why not try it for yourself, and see why gourmets from all over the world love Kobe Beef so much. Enjoy the highest quality taste from these passionate chefs.

Fat of the delicate Kobe beef starts melting at 23 degrees Celsius. Therefore, even the slightest changes in temperature and humidity impact the way Kobe Beef is grilled. Our superb chefs distinguish these differences, in order to cater to each guest's personal preferences.

Beef Steak Kawamura Ginza Store Address: Ginza 6-5-1 Brioni Ginza Building 8, Chuo Access: 3-min. walk from Ginza station (Ginza/Hibiya Line) Lunch: 11:30~14:00 Dinner: 17:00~22:00 TEL: 03-6252-5011 URL: http://bifteck.co.jp/en/index.html

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T O K Y O M U S T D O Explore Tokyo through the eyes of Tokyoites as they share their favorite secret hideaways.

Emily Baxter Emily first visited Japan 5 years ago in 2009 and instantly fell in love with Tokyo. A Melbourne native, she lived in Yokohama before moving to Tokyo, her “dream city,” in the beginning of 2014. She works in Tokyo as an English teacher and models on the side.

Alice’s Fantasy Restaurant http://www.alice-restaurant.com/ (Japanese) 3-min walk from Shibuya Station (JR/Keio/Ginza/Tokyu Toyoko Line)

1 Alice’s Fantasy Restaurant Themed restaurants are abundant in Tokyo! They’re a fun and quirky way to enjoy a meal with a friend. Girls may like to take a look at one of the Alice in Wonderland themed restaurants; anime-lovers often take a liking to maid cafés; while fun for everyone can be found at Asakusa’s ninja restaurant. It’s a little bit pricier than other restaurants nearby, but once in a blue moon, it’s a fun way to catchup with your friends; trust me—your food will never have looked so interesting!

2 Shibuya Scramble & Purikura The people in Shibuya are so diverse, it’s fascinating. Something I quite enjoy is sitting in the Starbucks above the Shibuya Scramble, and looking down at the hustle and bustle below. When in Shibuya, I also love to take purikura (pictures in a photo sticker booth) with all of my friends. You can find these machines in any game center. You can select photo filters which change your facial features, face shape, body shape and even hair color, while also adding digital make-up to your face if you so desire. The results are absolutely crazy, and although I look like an alien in them, I still find them to be a fun way to save a memory from time-to-time. Shibuya Scramble & Purikura Shibuya Station (JR/Keio/Ginza/Tokyu Toyoko Line)

3 Thrifting in Shimokitazawa Tokyo is great for thrifting! I’m not sure about where you’re from, but where I come from, secondhand clothes look secondhand. This isn’t always the case in Tokyo, where people so often take very good care of their clothes. You can find cute buys in the chain Thank-You Mart, where everything costs 390 yen, or in the super-hipster shopping district of Shimokitazawa, where the streets are lined with such stores.

Thrifting in Shimokitazawa Shimokitazawa Station (Odakyu/Keio Line)

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4 Cat Café Where better for animal-lovers to go than cafés full of their favorite furry pals? I had fun visiting the bright Hapineko cat café in Shibuya one rainy night, but I know there are many more out there. No matter which critter you’re missing back home, there are cafés specializing in dogs, owls, rabbits, reptiles, and even goats; I’m sure you’ll find one to suit your liking.

Cat Café http://hapineko.com/eigoindex.html 4-min walk from Shibuya Station (JR/Keio/Ginza/Tokyu Toyoko Line)


Words of Japan

vol.01

Heal the world with a calm face and kind words

「和顔愛語」 和のこころを世界へ Wa Gen Ai Go ~Spreading the spirit of “WA” around the world~ 「和顔愛語 (wa gen ai go) 」, which literally means “a calm face and kind words,” is often used in Buddhist teachings. It embodies the philosophy that if, for example, you had a bad day at work or at home and transferred those negative feelings via a moody face and harsh words to, say, a restaurant you are visiting, that would be felt by other customers and your waiter, and they in turn would catch your foul mood. After all, emotions are infectious and can have a wide ripple effect on those around you. What if, on the other hand, you were to greet them with thoughtful words and a smiling face? Your counterpart would likewise respond with kindness and so, one smile at a time, you would be able to make the world around you a warmer place. The contemporary Japanese calligrapher Miki Onishi, who created this calligraphy art, explains why she chose this word. “In Japan, there is a phrase「和する (wa suru)」which means catering to someone else’s words and feelings to create harmony. When talking to someone you love and respect, you tend to use kind words and peaceful facial expressions. Your kindness is transmitted through your behavior and, in turn, makes everybody feel welcoming and comfortable.「和 顔愛語 (wa gen ai go) 」describes this kind of circumstance.” The word「和 (Wa)」has several meanings, including amicability or an agreeable balance, but the phrase「和する」

in particular can be translated into the concept of omotenashi or putting oneself in the shoes of someone visiting Japan in order to anticipate and meet their needs. Interestingly enough,「和 (Wa)」also refers to the country of Japan, as in 「和風」, or Wa style. Of course, in a world where intractable confrontations are a reality, it is not easy to realize the ideal of「和顔愛 語 (wa gen ai go) 」. But, all the more because of that, it is important to make known to the world the spirit of「和顔愛語 (wa gen ai go) 」that lies at the roots of the Japanese soul, in an attempt to make a modest contribution to world peace. “In order to convey the kind intentions of this phrase, I chose a brush made from goat’s wool, which is flexible and soft, and I used large brush strokes with a gentle flow” Onishi says, describing the artwork. “By selecting different lettering styles and brush types, even paper and ink, you can create various expressions.” Her artwork proves that the world of Japanese calligraphy is infinite. “The ink is ground, and when the scent of the ink wafts up, the brush is dipped into the ink. Then I face the paper. The scent of the ink instantly calms me down. While the artwork is ink on paper, existing in a black and white world, it embodies wishes and wills and has the power to portray various emotions. The incredible depth and dimension exists in pure simplicity. That’s the spell of calligraphy.”

Profile of Miki Onishi Contemporary Japanese calligrapher. She received numerous awards such as Shodo Geijutsuin first prize and the governor of Kochi award at Akinokuni national calligraphy competition. Coterie of the Kansai Calligraphy Association. Shodo Geijutsuin jury member. Board member of the Hakusen Shodokai. 30

WAttention Tokyo


Where The History of Japan s Fine Tableware Began Established in 1904, Noritake was the first company to succeed in making western-style tableware in Japan. Synonymous with supreme craftsmanship and elegant style, Noritake s fine tableware has been loved throughout the world as its beauty has continued to transcend over the ages.

Shikisai Rondo Collection Motifs such as cranes flapping in the sky, plum flowers blossoming in silence, and the vivid Kakitsubata (Rabbit-ear iris) which colors early summer, have been cherished by painters since ancient times. This fantastic collection is rimmed with midnight black and brilliant gold. Photo image: Plate 27cm Pair set [Cherry blossom & Autumn leaves]

Noritake GINZA

Noritake SAKAE

•Hours: 11:00~19:30, closed during New Year holidays •Address: Bunshodo Building 2F, 3-4-12 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo •TEL: 03-3567-6121 •URL: http://www.noritake.co.jp/ tableware/shoplist/ginza.html

•Hours: 10:00~18:00; closed on the 1st and 3rd Sundays •Address: 2-1 Shin sakaemachi, Naka-ku, Nagoya, Aichi •TEL: 052-951-0561 •URL: http://www.noritake. co.jp/tableware/shoplist/ sakae.html

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WAttention Tokyo vol 15  

03 In Harmony with the Seasons 04 Letter from the Publisher 05 Tokyo Hot News 07 Must-Buy Japanese Beauty Products 06 WA Experience 16 ways...

WAttention Tokyo vol 15  

03 In Harmony with the Seasons 04 Letter from the Publisher 05 Tokyo Hot News 07 Must-Buy Japanese Beauty Products 06 WA Experience 16 ways...