Move over cat cafes, Tokyo just opened a new reptile bar

Nov 12 2019, 1:45 pm

Animal cafes have been all the rage in recent years. Why buy and drink your coffee and merely sit there, when you can drink your coffee and interact with cute little animals?

Typically, in North America, the most popular variations of these cafes feature cats or rabbits. But leave it to Japan to push the envelope to include cats, owls, and, most recently, reptiles.

If you find the typical bar scene boring and played out, Tokyo’s new Bar Yatonokami may have just the twist you seek.

 

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Located west of the city center, the bar’s aesthetic is dark and alluring with blue fluorescent lights, photos of reptiles on the walls, and an attic-like second-floor location.” 

Upon entering, guests immediately come face to face with rows of reptile terrariums housing over 100 creatures.

However, Bar Yatonokami — which translates to “Bar of the Night Sword God” — caters to everyone, even if you are not particularly wild about reptiles.

According to owner Nishikawa, roughly 20% of his customers merely notice the bar’s eccentric entryway and stairwell — decked out with reptile photos — and decide to check it out due to sheer curiosity.

 

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An avid advocate for adopting reptiles as pets, Nishikawa is adamant that any negative stigma surrounding reptiles is baseless.

Instead, he claims that they are ideal companions as they only require food once every couple of days, aren’t noisy, won’t damage furniture, and are relatively low maintenance.

As long as the humidity and temperature in their enclosure are suitable for the specific reptile’s needs, they will happily live with you.

With venues like Bar Yatonokami exposing a more favourable light heat lamp on our fine, scaly friends, the reasons not to make one a pet are dwindling.

 

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Nishikawa will assist visitors in handling any reptile they may choose, so long as the animal is willing to be social that day.

Guests may also choose to handle a variety of spiders and other “more-than-four-legged” creatures.

Post reptile hangout sesh, customers can disinfect their hands and enjoy a drink at the bar.

 

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Reptile cafes have seen a recent spike in popularity in Japan. In addition to Bar Yatonokami, there is also the Reptile Cafe and Bar Arrive in Kobe, Reptile Cafe Again in Osaka, and the Reptile Cafe in Yokohama.

It is important to note that, since they are not necessarily the most social or domesticated animals, reptiles should not be handled for more than 30 minutes a day to avoid causing any unnecessary stress.

Next time you are in Tokyo and are looking to spice up your bar experience and take a walk on the wild side, have a drink and hang out with Bar Yatonokami’s many reptile friends. This experience is anything but cold-blooded.

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