Hidden in the side streets near Yokogawa Station is Maneki Neko, a quaint cafe filled with fluffy felines.
For ¥1,200 (¥600 for kids), you can spend an hour playing and lounging with cats in this cozy cafe. A free drink is included with each hour.
Maneki Neko has over fifteen cats, ranging from Persian and munchkin cats to Scottish folds. The cats are regularly rotated in order for them to relax and distress, so depending on the day you visit, your favorite cat may or may not be present. Lists with pictures and the names of the cats are at each table so you know who you're playing with.
The cats at Maneki Neko truly inhabit the entire space. They drape themselves across the floor, perch on the counter, walk around proudly and play with each other. It's clear that the staff loves and cares for the them as well. You will often find the staff playing with or grooming their fuzzy friends or talking about the last cute thing one of the cats has done.
The cafe has two main areas. The main room includes a counter for folks visiting alone, tables for two and a small glass room filled with cat towers. The majority of the cats lounge here, sleeping in their cat tower or eating. The second room has tables for larger parties and is filled with cushions and cat decor. Here, you can sit on the ground and play with the cats with their various toys. While many cats are sleeping, others will come up to greet you by laying down next to you. It's also easy to catch a passing cat's attention with a feathered toy.
The cafe offers a number of drinks, including coffee, lattes, tea and soft drinks, but if you want something truly delicious, the melon soda is a must. It tastes like real honey dew melon juice and is incredibly refreshing on a hot day. Aside from drinks, the cafe serves various types of rice, including shrimp pilaf and Chinese fried rice, as well as other dishes such as pancakes, pizza, takoyaki and okonomiyaki. However, cats often walk past the kitchen area, so it is up to you whether you want to dine here or not.
While Maneki Neko is a place to have fun and relax, there are also certain rules you must follow for the well-being of the cats. You must take off your shoes, wear slippers and wash and disinfect your hands before and after interacting with the cats. Furthermore, you cannot disturb sleeping cats (softly petting is OK) or forcibly grab the cats. Photographs are allowed as long as flash isn't used. In addition, children younger than 6 years old are prohibited from entering the cafe.
Goods are available for purchase, such as cat charms and postcards featuring the cats from the cafe. A display of items is set up by the entrance inside.
Overall, Maneki Neko is a relaxing and fun way to spend time. The environment is comfortable and both the cats and staff alike are friendly.