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Feeling a bit like a modern-art museum gift shop, Rin offers a well-curated collection of design-conscious goods from around Japan, with an emphasis on traditional craftsmen with a modern aesthetic sensibility. They've put together a good selection of pottery, metalware and glassware for the kitchen and dining table, as well as stationery and paper goods, wood crafts, leather goods and artisanal food products. [Show more]
Hundreds of detailed architectural models, showcasing the current state of contemporary Japanese architecture, are on display at this impressive new museum. Visitors can explore numerous works by contemporary stars like Kengo Kuma, Shigeru Ban and many more, and follow the directions of their careers through the years. There's also work by dozens of up-and-coming practitioners, and in some cases competitive proposals for recent projects are displayed side by side, showing how different firms have tackled the same task. [Show more]
With its prime location looking out over Tokyo Bay, the Odaiba area and the towers of Shiodome, this 40th-floor observation deck offers some unique views of Tokyo. One of Tokyo's oldest observation decks, it's not as popular with tourists as newer spots like Tokyo City Hall or Skytree, but it remains popular with amateur photograhers, who set up their tripods on a nightly basis to capture sunset over the city. [Show more]
The main draw at this long-running folk craft store is probably their extensive selection of pottery - dishes, bowls and other tableware in various styles and price ranges - as well as a smaller selection of bamboo and lacquerware for the table. [Show more]
Highly organized factory tours like this one are an interesting phenomenon. While you're technically inside the factory building, you're not actually on the factory floor wearing a hairnet and watching people at work, but instead wandering from one museum-style exhibit area to the next and watching videos that explain the production process going on nearby. In the end, though, this approach is probably more informative. [Show more]
The Nakagin Capsule Tower is the most important built example of Metabolism, the Japanese avant-garde architectural movement. The building embodies Metabolist theory, which suggests that cities should mimic biological systems to adapt to rapid modernization. The movement began in 1960 with the publication of a manifesto by a group of young designers working under Kenzo Tange, the modernist master. The completion of the Nakagin Capsule Tower in 1972 proved to be a high-water mark for the Metabolist movement and architect Kisho Kurokawa's career. [Show more]
A pleasant oasis of greenery in the middle of Tokyo's business and shopping districts, the park features two large flower gardens and two domed music/event stages that often host concerts and festivals, especially on weekends. Dating back to 1903, this was Tokyo's first Western-style park. [Venue data]
Found Muji is a concept brand from the design-savvy retailer, reprenting a collection of simple but elegant products and designs discovered by Muji trend-hunters in various parts of the world. Muji then teams up with the craftsmen or small manufacturers to streamline production and standardize quality control, and presents the final products in Muji stores. [Show more]
Two gigantic room-size layouts are the main draw at this impressive model-railway attraction. The larger diorama is European in character, with urban streets, town squares and outdoor restaurants, as well as a couple of mountain resorts connected by cable cars. Train fans can follow the daily schedule of individual model train runs, which are announced by a live MC. [Show more]
Tokyo's most gorgeous art supply store may tempt you to pick up a paintbrush, just for an excuse to shop here. The wall of pigments took a full week of chromatic coordination to get right, and they stock more than 4000 colors. They also carry Japanese washi paper, ink sticks and ink stones, and they hold regular seminars and workshops with art-school professors. [Venue data]
Traditional kamaboko fish cakes are the unlikely, yet logical, subject of this specialized museum run by a company that makes fish cakes. Most people seem to be here for the 50-minute, hands-on classes in fish-cake production (in Japanese; Y1500), but if you haven't booked a class you can just stroll around and admire the exhibits and peek into the big open factory kitchen. [Show more]
Osanbashi Yokohama International Passenger Terminal is an inspiring piece of architecture and an exciting addition to Yokohama's vibrant waterfront. The undulating rooftop, with its natural grass lawns and deck finished in Brazilian wood, feels more like a natural feature of the landscape than a man-made building. [Show more]
Muji's gigantic flagship store near Yurakucho station has been recreated as a specialty bookstore. It still houses the usual retail departments, selling simply designed furnishings, housewares, clothing, stationery and even food, but now undulating walls of bookshelves snake through the retail space, showcasing books related to the goods on display. [Show more]
Cartoon bears are of course an important part of daily life in Japan, and the most ubiquitous of these is probably Brown, the salmon-loving mascot of LINE, Japan's (and Asia's) most popular instant-messaging service, with 700 million users worldwide. Brown the bear, Cony the rabbit and their other animated friends are the stars of this popular Harajuku character goods shop, located next to Takeshita-dori and spread out over two levels. [Show more]
Stamp collectors and stamp enthusiasts will be excited to explore the centerpiece of this specialty museum - an impressively huge collection of more than 330,000 postage stamps from around the world, carefully arranged in hundreds of vertical display drawers by country and continent. [Show more]
Find the best cat, rabbit and bird cafes in town at our sister site AnimalCafes.com