Culture

Sip Stunning Cocktails Inspired By Japanese Folk Tales At This Posh Tokyo Bar

2017-05-25 03:54

There’s nothing more timeless than fairy tales passed down from generation to generation, but as people get older, many forget the initial feeling of enchantment that made them fall in love with their favorite childhood stories in the first place. Hoping to bring that magical spark back are Japanese Fairy Tale Cocktails, a year-long running series of mesmerizing cocktails inspired by perennial Japanese folk tales. These drinks will take booze-loving adults back to memory lane, while also giving them a chance to relive familiar fairy tales in a completely different way. Offered at the MIXX Bar & Lounge on the 36th floor of the ANA InterContinental Tokyo Hotel, guests will…


Tokyo 2020 Olympics Holding Mascot Design Contest, Offering ¥1 Million Prize

2017-05-24 05:36

While anime character heavyweights such as Goku, Luffy, Sailor Moon, and Naruto have been named as official “ambassadors” of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, an official mascot has yet to be selected. That’s because the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Organizing Committee is offering one lucky winner the chance to design the mascot themselves, with 1,000,000 yen ($8,975 USD) for the winner, and 100,000 yen ($896 USD) for finalists as incentive. Source: IOC/IPC/Tokyo2020 Guidelines state that the contest is open to both Japanese and foreign residents of Japan, and applicants are required to submit a mascot design for both the Olympic and Paralympic games with a text profile of the characters. As…


Ramen And Shaved Ice Is The Summer Combo You Need To Try This Year

2017-05-22 04:43

In Tokyo, near the Yamanote Line at a station called Komagome, resides a small ramen shop called Kabochan Ramen. Named after the owner Kubokawa-san, an experienced and knowledgeable ramen enthusiast, this ramen shop was handed down to him from the original owner who was planning on shutting the restaurant down. Originally the restaurant served shoyu ramen or salt based ramen. However although Kubokawa-san continued the shoyu ramen tradition of the shop, he also created a delicious and spicy miso style of ramen that went perfectly with a Japanese style shaved ice dessert called Kakigori. It may be an unexpected combination to find Kakigori, a famous Japanese summer festival ice treat…


French Jewelry Brand Creates Japan-Inspired Collection Featuring Retro-Modern Designs

2017-05-22 04:39

During the late-19th century, ukiyo-e, porcelain, fans, and other forms of Japanese fine art became strong sources of inspiration for many Western artists. The European craze for Japanese art became so great that the word “Japonism” was coined in 1872 to describe the phenomenon, and has since been used to explain the influence of Japanese art on Western art culture. Now, two centuries later, the usage of the word “Neo Japonism” has been on the rise. Neo Japonism refers to a revival of Western interest in Japanese art, which has prompted many artists to turn to Japanese art culture for inspiration when producing modern works and designs. Source: PR Times…


Japanese Summer Fashion Is Purring With These Cute Cat Yukata

2017-05-22 12:06

While they don’t get quite as crazy as making gigantic and wearable felt cat heads, Japanese online retailer Felissimo has always been pretty creative in releasing cat-themed fashion items such as socks and glasses that actually mimic the physical traits of felines. Now their Cat Department, specifically dedicated to cat-themed items, is releasing maybe the cutest way to walk around at Japanese summer festivals with this charming cat yukata. Source: PR Times Felissimo’s Cat Department frequently surveys cat owners for what type of goods they would like to see released, and according to their research they found that while cat yukata certainly exist, it is hard to find varieties that…


Women-Only Accommodation Plan At Tokyo Hotel Lets Guests Take Home A Full Yukata Set

2017-05-19 04:39

Female travelers looking for a place to stay in Tokyo this summer are in luck, because guests staying at the Rihga Royal Hotel from July 1st to September 30th will get to take home a complete yukata set after enjoying a luxuriously spent vacation. This special summer accommodation plan is for women only, and is extremely popular among travelers every year. Source: PR Times Needless to say, the main feature of the Girls Yukata Stay plan is the full yukata set that guests are given for free. The 7-piece set includes a yukata, obi (sash), geta sandals, koshi-himo (narrow sash), obi-ita (thin stiffening board), bag, and an instruction manual explaining…


Rolling Stones Meets Traditional Japanese Art In Limited Edition Ukiyo-e Prints

2017-05-19 01:22

Proved by the truly badass ukiyo-e artworks of legendary rock bands KISS and Iron Maiden, hard rock and traditional Japanese art go hand in hand like rum and coke. Now it’s the turn of Rolling Stones fans to raise their glasses, because the iconic “Tongue and Lips” logo has gotten the ukiyo-e treatment in a series of epic woodblock prints. Ukiyo-e, which translates to “image(s) of the floating world,” is a genre of Japanese art that thrived from the 17th to 19th centuries. Artists produced woodblock prints and paintings of everything from scenes of folk tales to erotica, and though the number of artists specializing in ukiyo-e has diminished since…


Drinking in Class?! Tokyo’s School Izakaya: Rokunen Yonkumi

2017-05-19 11:01

Tokyo is a wonderful place to enjoy a variety of themed cafes and bars — whether you’re in the mood to eat and drink surrounded by your favourite characters, accompanied by dancing robots, in a prison or in a church, there is something for every taste. Among the more unique offerings is Rokunen Yonkumi (6th year, class 4) — as you may be able to guess from the name, this izakaya is inspired by a Japanese elementary school classroom! The tables and chairs closely resemble those found in Japanese elementary schools (complete with pencil pots and actual school workbooks), the drink menu is in the style of a notebook, and…


This Soy Sauce-Flavored Soft Serve Will Let You Have Ramen For Dessert

2017-05-18 05:51

Word has been going around that ramen fanatics in Hokkaido are having ramen for lunch and dessert at ramen restaurant Yukitohana. Located in Furano, Hokkaido, the restaurant is famous among locals for their impeccable niboshi (dried sardines) ramen, but it is not this specialty that Instagrammers have been raving about. Instead, what’s gotten the attention of ramen lovers all over Japan is their soy sauce-flavored soft serve ice cream, that at first glance looks like a mini portion of ramen served in an ice cream cone. A post shared by Emma Wei Chichi (@rgermany7) on Jul 9, 2015 at 7:08am PDT The Ramen Soft Serve is made of vanilla soft…


Japanese DJ Produces Catchy Dance Song With A Bunch Of Pubic Hair

2017-05-18 04:50

Yes, you read that right — Japanese DJ ☆Taku Takahashi of hiphop group M-Flo just came out with a song made with pubic hair. The song, In Motion, was created as part of the Pubic Hair Grooving project, for which the pubic hairs of 15 female participants were collected and generated into sound according to their various “waveforms.” ☆Taku Takahashi then made magic by adding some rhythm and catchy beats, ultimately producing a groovy dance song we could totally imagine hearing at a Tokyo nightclub: Not all that surprisingly, the project was sponsored by Datumou Recipe, a research team specializing in hair removal. Although what anyone decides to do with…


Treat Yourself To A Rooftop Lunch While Savoring Isetan’s Bento Boxes Packed With Japanese Delicacies

2017-05-18 03:13

Every day around noon, thousands of students, office workers, and moms and dads throughout Japan open up their bento boxes to dig into a much-appreciated, often homemade lunch. The quiet excitement shared during lunchtime doesn’t just come from waiting all morning with grumbling stomachs — for many people, the act of lifting the lid of a bento box to discover its contents is one of the simple pleasures in life. Not everyone has the time to pack a homemade lunch in the morning, however, which is why grocery stores, convenience stores, and even food carts offer a wide variety of bento boxes for the busy and hungry. But then comes…


Traditional Japanese Candy Sculptures Are Handcrafted Masterpieces You Won’t Have The Heart To Eat

2017-05-17 06:15

It’s unlikely we’ll ever stop to marvel at the artisanal mastery of an ordinary lollipop, but when it comes to the candy sculptures made by the hands of amezaiku artists, it’s hard to take our eyes off of them. Amezaiku, or traditional Japanese candy craft artistry, has been a part of Japanese culture for centuries, with a history going as far back as the Heian Period (794-1185) when it is believed that candy offerings were made at temples. Considering the skill and painstaking detail that go into each sculpture, it’s no wonder amezaiku works are regarded as more than just candy sold at a store. One store in Japan offering…


Award-Winning Short Animation Shows Two Young Heroes Saving The World One Zipper At A Time

2017-05-17 04:34

They say not all superheroes wear capes, and it’s true; as a matter of fact, if they’re anything like Yoji and Kei from short animated film “Fastening Days,” they’ll be equipped with modules on their wrists that shoot out zippers to help save the world. Created by the YKK Group, most widely known as the world’s largest manufacturer or zippers, the animation follows the two young heroes as they dive to the assistance of those in need in their community. As orphaned children themselves and living with their adoptive parent Anna, life isn’t exactly a walk in the park for this duo either — but that never stops them from…


Hanayashiki: A Trip To Japan’s Oldest Amusement Park

2017-05-16 05:13

Just a few minutes away from the bustling tourist hub of Senso-ji in Tokyo’s Asakusa, there is a rather different kind of historical attraction to be found; dating back to 1853, Hanayashiki amusement park is regarded to be the oldest in Japan. While it has changed a lot since its early days as a flower park, its old-fashioned rides still offer a taste of what amusement parks were in days gone by. The park is very small and it is quite possible to ride everything within just a few hours. Notable attractions include the park’s oldest surviving attraction, Bikkuri House (Surprise House), the 60-year-old steel rollercoaster and the iconic Bee…


Japanese Schoolgirls Show Off 82 Sumo Wrestling Techniques In Uniform

2017-05-14 10:19

We’ve seen Japanese schoolgirls throw down with sumo wrestlers before in order to get their hands on some ramen, but this promotional video for the 101st iteration of the Kanazawa High School Sumo Tournament may be the fiercest combination of sumo and schoolgirls yet. In the video, a pair of dueling Japanese schoolgirls demonstrate the 82 techniques that can be used to win a sumo match with stylish grace! While there are definitely more unaccounted ways in which to win a sumo bout, the two girls in this video demonstrate what are regarded as the 82 official winning techniques. These include a variety of dodging techniques, twists, and throw-down maneuvers–all…


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