If you’re a cat lover who just likes to be surrounded by furry felines when you sip on your latte, then you’ll be happy to know that Singapore will soon see its very first cat cafe.
Situated at Boat Quay, the cat cafe is named Neko no Niwa (Japanese for “cat garden”). No, it’s not quite a cafe where cats can get their brew – although that’s an idea – it’s meant for humans who like cats.
“We have a Japanese name, and we are modelling our cat cafe after Japanese cat cafes. So it will be pretty much like a cafe with cats around you,” said co-owner and self-professed “extreme cat lover” Tan Sue Lynn.
Tan says she and her business partner have identified more than 10 “resident cats” they’d like to have for the cafe, but have not confirmed the exact number.
“They usually need a bit of time to be absolutely comfortable in a new environment, but we are not able to tell how long they need,” she explained. “When you bring a cat home, (they probably) will hide in a dark corner and under the furniture. We want to ensure that our cats are past that stage and ready for visitors.”
Renovations are still on-going at Neko no Niwa, but Tan said she’s hoping to open for business by late November. We’re sure there will be good mews when that happens.
Credits: TODAY On
Yeah, I’m SO gonna go there on
Here’s a recap of my March 2013 visit to Tom’s Cafe, a place filled with fat furry felines in Hongdae
Get to know your kitties here, you’ll be spending a lot of time with each other
I’m guessing this says ‘Don’t disturb the cat, if it doesn’t want
attention’ and ‘Don’t pick up any cats’. I did see a girl trying to pick
No official entry fee to the cafe, but you need to buy an
(over-priced) drink. Which is fine, since you’ll be spending lots of
quality feline time here. <And yes, that’s me, kinda bushed after on
This is a mini-parlour of sorts with kitties reclining languidly on a mound of pillows as cute as themselves ^^ Loads of folks trying to pat and take pics of them. So you need to wait for a right opening to squeeze in like a seasoned ajumma in a crowded train.
The more energetic cats get to show off their athleticism to their adoring audience. What, no audience? Time to hop back down to the downy comforts of the pillow parlour.
Apparently cat cafes are a popular dating spot. It seems to be the standard practice for guys to try to lure a cat worthy of their date’s tastes. But foolish humans, you don’t choose the cat, the cat chooses you! <And no amount of toy-waving will bring them over!>
For visitors coming in alone, never fear – it means more attention devoted to the feline goddess who deigns to smile on you that day
My favourite was this b~i~g kittie who was more fur than cat. It emerged suddenly from a pumpkin plastic cave, and rolled over to demand instant adoration by the masses. I made the mistake of patting its tummy (sorry, I’m actually a dog-person, my dogs love a good belly-rub). Captain Cuddles was most aggrieved and swiped a claw at me. Fortunately it missed, and the rest of its human servants quickly patted him in all the right places to make up for my misstep *___*
Seeing the happy visitors and well-kept cats in Tom’s Cafe, I had a thought that animal shelters can set up pet cafes to house and showcase cats or dogs to potential adopters. Having taken in two shelter dogs, I know the anxiety and indecision that lies in adopting an animal you’ve never seen before. The cafe would provide a sustainable income for the shelter. And people might be more open to the idea of adoption, having spent more time interacting with the animals in a comfortable setting.
Imagine this sweet kittie in your neighbourhood cat cafe. Wouldn’t you just want to offer him a loving home?
By Tomokazu Kosuga
WORDS AND PHOTOS BY TOMOKAZU KOSUGA
TRANSLATED BY LENA OISHI
Cat cafés are huge in Japan right now. As the name suggests, these
are coffee shops where cat lovers go to sip overpriced lattes and hang
out with an adorable smoosh pile of kitties. In the past five years,
exactly 79 such cafés have popped up all over Japan. What’s weird is
that the café cats aren’t expensive pedigreed felines like Persians or
those other on
Thirty-eight-year-old Norimasa Hanada, the owner of Neko no mise (Shop
of Cats), Tokyo’s first-ever cat café, explains the problem: “Most
Japanese rental apartments prohibit pets. The on
It makes sense, then, that most cat-café fans are relatively young.
More than 30 customers shuffled into and out of Neko no mise during the
four hours I recently spent there, and apart from on
At Neko no mise, a few sofas, chairs, and tables were scattered
throughout the café, which emanated a relaxing, feminine atmosphere
complete with soft music. On
are a few different types of cat-café customers. Newcomers will be so
swept up in the distinct atmosphere that they will just sit there
stunned. It looked as if most of them had never had a pet cat or even
Those who came in groups were generally cheerful and talked a lot, using the café as a place to catch up with friends. The cat factor was a bonus for them, and they grabbed the cat toys lying around and played with the cats quite successfully. The couples that I saw were either in new relationships or were still in the friendship stage, and were using the cats to bridge the awkward distance between them.
While I sipped my coffee in a room full of cats and cat groupies, I could slowly feel the soothing effects of the kitty café wash over me. Before I knew it, I was smiling for no reason and was so at ease that my eyes started to droop in a sort of happy stupor. Others must have been feeling the same numbing effects because occasionally the room full of people would fall silent as they stared at the cats’ every move.
Most customers stayed for at least on
Cat cafés generally charge a time-based fee. Neko no mise charges
$1.50 every ten minutes ($9 an hour), and $21.50 for a special
three-hour plan. Might sound like they’re overcharging, but maintaining a
clean, dreamy cat environment ain’t cheap. The on
There’s a Japanese legend that says that cats become popular every time there’s a recession in this country, and it’s true that there’s been a huge boom in cat and cat-related-merchandise sales these past few years. Something about those pointy ears and tiny paws has a calming effect on the human mind. Or perhaps it’s the traditional Japanese culture of forcing people to behave like herds of sheep and act appropriately by carefully judging the vibe of every situation (what the Japanese literally call “reading the air”) that makes the independent, freedom-loving cat the perfect target of obsession. I know I’m making this all sound pretty sad, but like most cute things, it’s best not to think about it too much. Just stare into the hypnotizing eyes of the pretty kitties and let your troubles fall away. Purr.