A Retro Starbucks with Tatami Mats Opens in an Old Building More than 100 Years Old in Ninenzaka, Kyoto
On Friday, June 20, Starbucks Coffee Japan opened Starbucks Coffee Kyoto Ninenzaka Yasaka Chaya Branch, its first shop in the world with a noren curtain and tatami mat rooms.
Kyoto Ninenzaka Yasaka Chaya Branch is in a traditional two-story Japanese house that was built over 100 years ago on Ninenzaka Street, a cultural and historic street that retains vestiges of the Taisho era leading up to the World Heritage Site, Kiyomizu-dera Temple. The main building and the large wall are designated as traditional structures under the Sannenzaka Traditional Architectures Preservation District Preservation Plan.
Once you enter the shop through a noren curtain on the first floor, you will walk through the shop feeling as if you are in a "tori-niwa" (a garden that connects the front and back entrance) to reach the bar counter with a view of the back garden. Each of the front, middle and back gardens have striking tsukubai stone wash basins. They set the stage for a traditional garden space with light shining in, together with the decorative rocks and the greenery of the trees.
On the second floor, there are three zashiki-style rooms where you can take your shoes off and relax on tatami mats. You can sit on zabuton mats made with Tango Chirimen cloth from Kyoto and enjoy your favorite coffee in an unusual environment. The tokonoma alcove in each room has an original scroll of Tango Chirimen cloth that depicts the story of coffee, expressing the fusion of Kyoto's culture and Starbucks's coffee culture.
This is a place where you can have a Starbucks experience like never before, in a space that expresses respect for Japan's traditional culture. Be sure to visit this new Starbucks that is integrated into the Kyoto townscape.
[This article was originally published in Walkerplus on 06.22.2017]
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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