Tokyo life Archive


Do you know "GYARU"??

Actually "GYARU" means Girl/Gal.
but in Japan,

We use "GYARU" for girls who do a special fasion like this :)


I think "GYARU" is one of Japanese culture. (I'm not a GYARU though)


There are some kind of GYARUs.


How do you think??

I was surprised that there are some GYARUs in other countries.
(known by Tokyo Kawaii TV)

"Xiaxue" is the most famous GYARU in Singapore!


and "Cheesie" & "Audrey" are famous GYARUs in Malaysia!!

Malaysia Gyaru.jpg

Wow... soooooo cute!

How about your country?? Is there any GYARUs??

If you wanna see GYARUs in Tokyo, you can go to Harajyuku or Shibuya :)

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Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: misato (June 2, 2011 5:00 PM) | Permalink

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One night the street in Itabashi, Tokyo was lit by the light of a full moon.

As I was getting closer to the moon, the reddish-orange color was becoming clearer.

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On a night with a full moon, seedy look of things and air of mystery surround the town.

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Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: hideki (May 25, 2011 12:35 PM) | Permalink

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Have you ever seen
this gigantic wall painting in Shibuya?

The wall painting is called “Myth of Tomorrow” and it was created by Taro Okamoto.
Taro was working on it for one of the hotels in Mexico and it had been missing for a while.
Then, the painting was rediscovered in Mexico in 2003 and installed at Shibuya Mark City in 2008.

It was about 2 months ago … I was at The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo to see the exhibition ‘Okamoto Taro ― The 100th Anniversary of His Birth’ on March 11th.

I was evacuated from the museum and I could not go through whole in the exhibition …
The National Museum of Modern Art became a place for evacuation.

One day, I came back to see the exhibition again.

People were waiting on line for 70 minutes.

The year 2011 marks the centenary of Taro Okamoto’s birth (1911-1996).

“Art is explosion” … when I was little, Taro said the words in a TV commercial.
The words have had a strong impact on me and his appearance on TV variety shows was nothing but the eccentric artist to me.

After going through approximately 130 works including paintings, sculptures. photographs, and designs, I saw his philosophy and the way he lived.
In the exhibition, “Confrontation” is a key word.
Confrontations with 'pretty' Art, the War, Progress and Harmony for Mankind, the Consumer Society and himself …

At the exit of the exhibition, people could pick a “Taro’s words” from one of 4 boxes which looked like lottery boxes.

I picked …
Sticking to something that is not special is much harder than having a great adventure.

Someday, I want to visit Osaka and see real “Tower of the Sun” that was created for Expo ’70 and now is preserved and located in the Expo Commemoration Park in Osaka.

Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: hideki (May 14, 2011 5:36 PM) | Permalink

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Tokyo Marunouchi

One day I walked around Marunouchi area.

I did like the atmosphere of the Marunouchi.
The atmosphere reminded me of San Francisco, Sydney and Toronto where I used to live. I felt nostalgic for those cities while walking along the streets.

I saw harmony between green color of leaves and
grey color of buildings and the harmony made me feel comfortable.

Marunouchi is a business district of Tokyo, which is located between Tokyo Station and the Imperial Palace.
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The Marunouchi gate of Tokyo Station

Imperial Palace

Skyline of Marunouchi district, viewed from Imperial Palace gardens

In the recent decade, many famous brand-name shops from countries like France and Italy have opened in Marunouchi.
Therefore, while only businessmen had been seen before, nowadays we see many young ladies around Marunouchi.

As sun went down, people were rushing home

couples were holding hands on the street


and I … walking alone and watching people walk by.

Posted by: hideki (May 1, 2011 11:50 PM) | Permalink

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Shinokubo, the Korean town in Tokyo

If you feel like having Korean dishes, you could try Shinokubo.


Shinokubo station is on JR Yamanote line, takes about 6 min from JR Ikebukuro station.

Near Shinokubo station, there is a local Korean town, so that you can get a glimse of Korea while you are in Japan. In Shinokubo, you may hear a lot of 'Anyong haseyo'('hello' in Korean) around. The atmosphere is a bit different from any other places in Japan. It's more energetic and dynamic... I think ;D

You could find many Korean restaurants, K-pop shops (selling Korean-pop idol products) and Korean markets.


What about having Samgyopsal for dinner tonight at Shinokubo? ><

* Samgyopsal consists of sliced pork belly meat, cooked on a grill. It's very popular Korean dish!

Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: misol (March 16, 2011 5:24 PM) | Permalink

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On March 11th, 2011, I came to The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo to see the exhibition ‘Okamoto Taro ― The 100th Anniversary of His Birth.’

A powerful earthquake hit at 2:46 p.m. while I looked at ‘’Wounded Arm’’ … only 10 minutes after I entered the exhibition room.

The earthquake measuring magnitude 9.0 (it was upwardly revised to 9.0 from 8.8 today) hit northern Japan and it triggered tsunami that wiped way cars, ships, houses and devastated the towns all along the east coast.

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Immediately after the earthquake, visitors evacuated the building.

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People got away from the subway station.

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Sound of a ambulances siren, fire engines siren and police cars screamed around The Outer Garden of Tokyo Imperial Palace near Takebashi station.

Office workers wearing helmets gathered at ‘evacuation spot’ The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo

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Full suspension of all train services …

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A soba noodle restaurant ‘Chojuan’ provided people with a place to rest.
The restaurant gave me an onigiri (rice ball) and a cup of tea …

I cannot thank you enough.

It looked like there was no chance for the resumption of operation of trains … I decided to walk home.

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Thousands of people walked fast and rushed home as if they were robots.

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Capital freeway was closed and the traffic got heavy, and cars did not move forward.

I walked for about 3.5 hours and then I was lucky enough to catch a train that resumed operation at 11 p.m. …

What a day!

When I got home at 1 a.m., I appreciated the fact I am alive and prayed for the victims of tsunami.

We have received warm words of encouragement from all over the world and there are no words adequate to express our thanks for their kindness and warmth.

Now, everything is back to normal in Tokyo.
We look forward to meeting with you in the near future.
After going through bitter experience, we will grow up and get better.

Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: hideki (March 13, 2011 4:01 PM) | Permalink

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Does blood type determine character?

Do you believe that one's blood type influences one's personality?


Although there is a controversy about whether blood type determines person's character or not,
many of Japanese still like to talk about blood type and personality.

As a matter of fact, about 40% of Japanese people are A type, taking the first place.
All Arashi members are A type except Masaki Aiba ( he is AB type) :D

It could be dangerous to judge people only by their blood type,
but still, I think it's an interesting theory and a good subject for ice breaking.

Here is the chart from Wikipedia, showing the main traits of each blood type ><
Do you think it makes sense or not?

[ Japanese blood type personality chart ]
Type A
Best traits Earnest, creative, sensible, reserved, patient, responsible
Worst traits Fastidious, overearnest, stubborn, tense, conservative
Type B
Best traits Wild, active, doer, creative, passionate, strong
Worst traits Selfish, irresponsible, unforgiving, unpredictable
Type AB
Best traits Cool, controlled, rational, sociable
Worst traits Critical, indecisive, forgetful, irresponsible
Type O
Best traits Agreeable, sociable, optimistic
Worst traits Vain, rude, jealous, arrogant

Sakura Hotel Ikebukuro

Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro

Posted by: misol (March 7, 2011 9:32 AM) | Permalink

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Japanese Sticky Rice Cake

Have you ever try to taste rice cake?
And have you ever seen how to make rice cake??

We,Japanese people eat rice cake in new years day specially.
We have soup called Zouni and rice cake in it.

It's very few chance we can see making sticky rice cake and now you can see it :)
We first steam sticky rice and make them with mortar(usu) and pestle(kine) like below.
This little boy living near my house, he is very cute by the way ;)
Also, we occasionally eat sticky rice cake as sweet :)
I don't know who made this recipe but this is actually great!
This is 'Ichigo Daifuku'which is strawberry and sweet beans covered by sticky rice cake.
Making Ichigo Daifuku was fun :)

Or you can find and try this,'Yukimidaifuku' :)
This is bestselling sweet and it's icecream covered by nearly sticky rice. I want to eat this ;)

Posted by: sariko (February 11, 2011 11:04 AM) | Permalink

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Tokyo Club Guide no 1. Ageha

Do you like clubbing?
You could try clubs in Shibuya, Roppongi, Ebisu etc...
Yeah, those clubs are hot and have cool DJs, as usual..,
but here, I would like to introduce you the new type of club.


Ageha! :)

It's the club at Shin-Kiba, seaside, quite far away from downtown.

Ageha is a lot more bigger than other clubs, and it has outdoor stages as well.
The place is quite big and open, and non smoking (except smoking areas),
so there is no worry of cigarette smell.

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You can get fresh air from the sea and even see the sunrise at dawn.

Yurakucho Line directly connects Ikebukuro station and Shin-Kiba station.
or you could get Ageha suttle bus departs from Shibuya station.

Please check for detail :)

Then, enjoy Tokyo's nightlife! We all are born to enjoy in this world, aren't we? ;)

Posted by: misol (January 22, 2011 10:07 AM) | Permalink

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Japanese Izakaya

If you enjoy drinking either for fun or social gathering,
you wouldnt's miss trying Japanese Izakaya.
(moderate drinking makes us happy :D )

As you take a seat, a small dish 'oto-shi' will be served.
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You should pay for it although you haven't order it.
The price varies to places but is usually 300-500 yen. You could take it as table charge.
Oto-shi brings your appetite~

Delicious Izakaya Dishes


Sake & Nama-bi-ru!! *(Draught beer)

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Let's get a little bit relaxed and have some fun !
.....but please remember to drink moderately :)

Posted by: misol (January 18, 2011 11:55 AM) | Permalink

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