Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Day in Ginza with Gloomy Bear Creator Mori Chack!

Ginza is an upscale area of Tokyo where you can find lots of department stores, cafes, and boutiques. On this day, we will be meeting up with Mori Chack, creator of Gloomy Bear, for lunch. He will meet with our tour and do a signing and drawings for our group and take photos with us. Mori Chack is very handsome and very nice. He met with our first tour in 2008, and everyone loved him.

We will be having lunch with Mori Chack at Sweets Paradise, an all-you-can-eat Dessert Cafe, in Ginza. They also serve other foods like pasta, curry, and sushi, (the price for lunch is included in the tour price). You have 90 minutes to eat all you want...so yummy!

After lunch, you are free to explore Ginza, where you can find the largest Sanrio store in Tokyo. There are actually two here. One is called Questina, where you can find Hello Kitty Flowers...

And you can also get Hello Kitty nails done here...

This store has a lot of great stuff...including the bling Hello Kitty stuff...

Upstairs is the Ginza Sanrio World. This flagship Sanrio store features the entire range of Sanrio shop brands, all under the same roof: Gift Gate, Vivitix, Hello Kitty Store, Little Twins Stars Shop, as well as regional item corners, Greeting Cards and more. I spent hours here, it is so amazing. I only have a small picture from the Sanrio Japan website. They don't let you take photos in there. This is just one small corner of the store.
You will probably want to check out some other things in Ginza, like the Gucci Cafe, where you can buy Gucci chocolate.

There are plenty of things to do in Ginza. Your tour guide will give you a map with some places we recommend, like a Tea House where you can do a Modern Tea Ceremony. After Ginza, we will split into smaller groups and decide our next adventure from there. One option is to visit the Wholesale Fabric District, where you can find character fabric, including Hello Kitty, San-X, and Anime Fabrics.

Ginza + Mori Chack + Sweets Paradise + Hello Kitty Heaven = Awesome Day!

P.S. There is also a Vampire Themed Restaurant in Ginza, called Vampire Cafe , may have to check that out!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Tokyo Toy Show & Odaiba Adventure

During the trip, we will go to the Tokyo Toy Show. This is an annual tradeshow where you can see all the cool Japanese toys coming out. The picture above is our group from the 2008 trip!

The Tokyo Toy Show takes place at Tokyo Big Site, in Odaiba, which is an artificial island in Tokyo Bay, Japan. There are tons of fun things to do in Odaiba. You are free to do whatever you like in Odaiba, and we have some fun options for you.

Here are a few pics, I took from Stephanie Nguyen's livejournal (aka bubblesung). She took lots of great pics at the 2008 Tokyo Toy Show. There are lots of mascots around for you to take pictures with. Here are some that we liked...

Usarusan = monkey who turns into a superhero when he puts on his rabbit suit.

Lego Guy with Rick, Jamie, and Stephanie

Rabbits with Dresses, (I forget their names, but they make toys of them)

Anpanman (with Stephanie and Ben, our tour guide)

Looks like a rhino, with Araceli and My

Gachapin...I heart him!

There are lots of booths, but most of them won't let you take photos inside, this was the Sanrio booth. We got to see all the new stuff that was coming out.

There is stuff guys will like too, like this giant Ultraman made out of Ultramans.


Nearby, is the Aqua City Mall. It has lots of great stores including a Vivitix Sanrio Store, Disney Store, Toys R Us, Adidas, 0101 Outlet Store, Stussy, G-Shock Store, and more!!! Aqua City is the lower building structure. In that giant building, you will find Fuji TV. They have mascots perform there, like Gachapin and Mukku, and a store. You can go into that giant sphere, it is actually an observation deck, and you can find a replica of the Statue of Liberty out front!

Here is a great video from last year's show Tokyo Toy Show, (by japantrends.com)