Today we look at two unique cat cafes, Nekobukuro and Neko no Iru Kyuukeijo 299, both located in Ikebukuro, Tokyo.
Nekobukuro is on the 8th floor of the popular department store Tokyu Hands. This cafe has two rooms, both sporting cute themes of trains and a cozy home. Soothing music box-like tunes (reminiscent of titles from Disney or Studio Ghibli) play in the background. Unlike most animal cafes, there is no time limit on how long you can stay. Nekobukuro also does not sell food or drinks, therefore eliminating a common animal cafe rule that requires its customers to order at least one drink. The staff will explain the rules of the cafe upon entry.
Some of the cats are a bit playful, but most of them like to sleep or move around on their own, acting like, well, cats. Nekobukuro also has a wall displaying pictures of all of their cats, and even ranks the most popular ones amongst customers. Overall, this cafe is cozy, sweet, and great place for cat lovers.
Just around the corner from Tokyu Hands is Neko no Iru Kyuukeijo 299. Although located in an unmarked building (5th floor), you can’t miss the large signs outside the building sporting cute cats and the cafe’s long name. This cozy yet spacious cafe is uniquely a cat and manga cafe.
Before entering, you must exchange your shoes for slippers provided by the cafe. They are continually exchanged for new, clean ones to use, but germaphobes may want to prepare a pair of socks to wear if it makes you uncomfortable. After paying (approximately ¥600 per hour), manga, games, computer outlets, lounge areas, and, of course, playing with the cats is free of charge! Food, drinks, and food for feeding the cats is an extra charge, however.
Like Nekobukuro, some cats are playful while others enjoy napping or being petted. The atmosphere is very relaxed, and at night lots of young cat/manga loving couples stop by for a cozy and unique date. As the second branch to Neko no Mise, another large and popular animal cafe chain, Neko no Iru Kyuukeijo 299 does not disappoint and proved to be a fantastic find.
At both cafes, petting the cats is allowed, but not picking them up, so please be mindful. Before and afterwards, there are hand sanitizers and lint rollers free for usage. We hope you check out these great and unique cafes during your stay at Tokyo!
Check back for the next installment in this series, Mimi Rabbit Cafe. Until then, please visit our article 15 Tokyo Cat Cafes for more ideas on cat cafes to visit!