If you have a car, chances are, you will need to have it serviced at some time, or at the very least, you will need to go for a compulsory vehicle inspection (shaken) every two years. There are many service garages that can take care of your car but we always choose to go to our nearest Toyopet (by Toyota).
Stepping into the lobby feels like entering a car-themed hotel lobby. The area is big enough to accommodate a car or two as is the usual case with car showrooms, but without cars on display, the Toyopet lobby is just one grand relaxing space. To one side are floor to ceiling glass windows that look out onto the busy Prefectural Road 15 and keep the lobby bright.
Without fail, one of Toyopet's attentive staff will greet you and settle you into one of their cozy sitting areas. If you have kids, the play area is equipped with a sand table, coloring materials, toy car sets (of course!), and a TV playing cartoons. For adults, there are seats around tables or couches in front of TV sets. You will be invited to select a complimentary drink from the menu, which is served with a small snack. Weary customers can take advantage of the massage chair, or freshen up in the well-stocked wash rooms.
For this particular visit, we had to replace one of our headlights. The staff asked me courteously whether I would mind having the car washed as well. I was confused by his question. Usually, when service staff ask you something, it is because it will incur an additional charge. This was not the case. He was asking me whether I would mind having the car washed for free. Who says no to that?
As our car was being taken cared of (and we know that they will take the same kind of care on our car as they have shown us), and our kids happily busy in the play corner, my partner and I felt like we were on a mini date, except we get to go home in a tightened up freshly washed car.