Tokyo Picks

A city of quiet insanity. Of hairspray scented metro malls. Rush hour sundays. Men wearing handbags. Rei crossing the street. And all things matcha and wasabi. Irasshaimase!

Best Architecture
5−2−6 Minamiaoyama

Retro futurism as trademark and landmark. While a secret staircase tunnel leads directly to the menswear department in the basement, the women's collection is presented on fur coated rails - decorated with multiple video screens attached to long amorphous arms. Barbarella would shop here.

Best Museum
9-7-6 Tokyo Midtown Garden

Initiated by Issey Miyake, the angular concrete structure is surrounded by the skyline of Roppongi Hills and the Midtown Garden parks. The venue hosts design themed exhibitions with a strong aesthetic focus such as 'The Art of Rice'.

Best Concept Store
6-9-5 Ginza

A temple with a temple. The six storey building hosts all Comme des Garçons collections, artworks by Cindy Sherman, the Rose Bakery café and a rooftop garden with miniature shrine.

Best Department Store
3-14-1 Shinjuku

In fact, the best selection of Japanese designer brands: Undercover, Issey Miyake, Yohji Yamamoto. The most established or hyped. The holy fashion mountain of Shinjuku.

Best Deli
3−17−1 Shinjuku

Surprisingly, MUJI stores offer small cafeteria serving exquisite little dishes to be combined individually. A warm atmosphere with wooden furnishings and glass bottle chandeliers characterizes this fast slow food retreat.

Best Lunch
1-Chome-15-7 Jinnan

Located on the 5th floor of a little tower building, the concrete and leather equipped bar-cum-café offers a modern Japanese lunch menu and a relaxed, intimate lounge feeling.

Best Bar
3-Chome-20-6 Shinjuku

The bar owned by no one else than Nobuyoshi Araki strikes with a sinister, almost contemplative atmosphere and very devoted barkeepers. A bondage set and little book corner invite well-informed visitors into the Araki world.

Best Schnitzel
4-8-5 Jingumae

Tonkatsu or 'katsudon' is a classic rice dish topped with a sliced breaded cutlet. Japanese schnitzel, sort of. A must-eat. Anyday. Or everday even.

Best Gay Bar
2-Chome-11-4 Shinjuku

Topless waiters on Friday night deliver the prime reason for a visit. Add disco ball, laser lights, iconic pop diva songs and reasonably priced drinks and the night is set.

Best Souvenir Shop
1-Chome-16-5 Kabukicho

The 24h multi-store, fondly called 'Donki' by locals, allows instant late night shopping satisfaction. Coloured contact lenses, tabi socks, phone cases. You want it, you can have it.

Best Antique Books
1-Chome-14-11 Aobadai

Rather gallery than boutique, the space is equipped with small library-esque tables to read and study. On display are monumental works by Bruce Weber, Robert Mapplethorpe or Irving Penn.



Duck said...

I don't like you describing anything as reasonably priced.

LYNN and HORST said...