The day of cafes!
We started the day off with an appointment at the 'Kawaii Monster Cafe'...which is pretty much what it sounds like. I booked ahead the day prior for a lunch, hoping that the food would be good. Cafes are pretty hit-and-miss for having decent food alongside their schtick, but we found ourselves pleasantly surprised after a lot of apprehension.
The cute monster cafe lived up to its name, with fun and interesting furniture and designs for the room. It's a giant room for the most part, but segmented into different 'areas' that you can sit in. You don't get to choose unfortunately, but we ended up in the milk jug? area, or...something like that. The overall design of the place is apparently modeled after the idea that you were 'inside the belly' of a giant monster and you get to see how his insides work, which include giant milk jugs hanging above you, linked to random things. idk man.
You also get to the see the monster girls? or something along those lines, they all have cute names. They do a bit of a dance if there's a birthday (there was) and end the 1.5 hour visit with a song-and-dance that includes their official 'monster' mascot, which is a ball of purple hair. It's cute, and surprisingly fun.
The menu is pretty varied, and even had a vegetarian/vegan option. For the most part, the food is normal, they just use a lot of dyes and decoration to make it 'kawaii monster'. I ended up getting the Hello Kitty curry, since there was a collaboration going on for the month. So I killed Hello Kitty, and it was delicious. I also got a 'chemistry' alcohol drink, which was basically cherry flavoring and a mint-ish liqueur.
After our wild ride (truly, the Kawaii Monster Cafe embodied everyone's stereotypical weaboo impressions of Tokyo), we had a bit of time before the Owl Cafe appointment, so we visited the Pokemon Center.
Now apparently this is THE Pokemon Center, so it was PAAAACKED. The line wrapped outside the large store and through it, so we appointed one of our party members to wait in it while we gathered what we wanted. I was mostly looking for a Sandschrew plushie, because Sandschrews are totally unrepresented. ): And I found him! I got a few other things, like mystery PokeBalls (I love mystery boxes), and a nice tea cup. Even if you don't like Pokemon THAT much, it's a worthwhile stop just to see the chaos and cool designs of some of their merchandise.
Finally our appointment at the Owl Cafe came around, so we hopped on the train and arrived in time. I went to an owl cafe two years ago during my very short, impromptu visit to Tokyo, and really enjoyed it. The one I went to was very cautious, told us the owls get put in a different area to rest when the day was done, and had signs saying the owls already had 'too much attention' and to leave them alone. It was also just a nice, clean place. Unfortunately, the one we went to this year was...not.
Of course, owls are generally cool and it was nice to see them. But the whole ambiance was a little depressing, that much we all agreed on. I was already hesitant to visit an owl cafe again after doing some research on the care of the animals, but some cafes are better than others. This one was very meh, and we left after maybe 20 minutes.
To make us feel better, we ended up stopping at a cat cafe. A random one that was en route, but it ended up being a beautiful, large cafe (actual cafe, with drink included in admission) with a variety of cats that were definitely taken care of. I bought a 'meat popsicle' for like $5 that ended up being pretty worth. All the cats loved it, and one even followed me around and DEMANDED the popsicle.
Believe it or not, all of this only took up about half the day. For the next blog, I'll be talking about visiting the Square-Enix Artnia Cafe, and our experience with a carousel sushi restaurant!