Archives for posts with tag: tokyo

tokyo quality coffee

Tokyo has plenty of coffee options, from the latte choices at Starbucks to the canned beverages in the roadside vending machines, but it’s a lot harder to find the quality of coffee that comes from an artisanal cafe, roaster and barista.

mapp : : tokyo has compiled a list of ten of the best cafes around Tokyo.

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ginza dori

Tokyo’s Ginza district has the distinction of being Tokyo’s original upmarket shopping destination, some of the most expensive real estate in the world, the first to feature electric street lighting, the first with modern department stores, the first with stores that allowed customers to wear shoes inside the premises, the first to host luxury European brands. During Japan’s golden ’bubble’ years Ginza was the city’s glitzy playground, its stores raking in phenomenal earnings from cashed up citizens.

Times, though, have changed.

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snow city

This winter’s first snowfall came a little early, spoiling the party for many a twenty-year-old dressed up to celebrate their coming of age on 成人の日 (seijin no hi).

While parts of Japan are famous for the quality of their powder snow, snow in the city of Tokyo is not that common and when it does fall, there isn’t usually that much of it. Yesterday, though, the kanto area was, according to news reports, blanketed with some 40 centimetres of the stuff.

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Prada Epicenter

This year, mapp : : tokyo has been busily snapping scenes on the streets of Tokyo to publish on our instagram/mapptokyo stream. Many other talented photographers have also been publishing their visions of Tokyo and beyond to their preferred online services.

In the spirit of end of year ’best of’ lists, and in spite of the recent controversy Instagram has generated, mapp : : tokyo revisits a year of Instagram photos and highlights some of our favorite Japanese photographers.

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Merry Christmas

Christmas in Japan is at once familiar and different. This land of Buddhism and Shinto, a largely secular society, has relatively few Christians, though Tokyo does have a smattering of churches that do hold Christmas services. However, the society in general does not follow the Christmas traditions of Christianity.

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Tokyo: a vast city, with so many things to see; so much to do. What follows is one of dozens of possible “best of” to do lists for this city. Individually, these places and experiences offer glimpses of Tokyo’s unique culture; taken as a whole, they should provide a multi-faceted view of the city to a first-time visitor.

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I finally got around to checking out the Shoji Ueda exhibition at the Fujifilm Photo Museum in Roppongi. 

A lifelong Pursuit of Modernism − the Photographic World of Shoji Ueda is a grand title for the modestly presented exhibition – almost an afterthought in a space that houses Fujifilm’s entire catalogue of products, which is in itself a fascinating exhibition – but it’s definitely worth a look.

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Tokyo is not only one of the world’s great cities, it is also the best shopping destination on the planet.

We’ve just published an e-book guide to the best shopping in Tokyo’s most dynamic district, Shinjuku.

iSHOP TOKYO shinjuku, a NEW iPad e-book published by mapp : : tokyo, is now available FREE on the Apple iBooks store through iBooks on your iPad.

iSHOP TOKYO shinjuku has useful general information on Tokyo, from transport to holidays, it provides Japanese language tips and authentic gift and souvenir suggestions, hotel and dining ideas and general shopping information as well as detailed notes on Shinjuku’s most interesting stores – with address details, maps, pictures and website links.

Published with Apple’s iBooks Author, iSHOP TOKYO shinjuku is compatible with iPad and iBooks 2.0. You can download iSHOP TOKYO shinjuku from Apple’s iBooks store via the iBooks app on your iPad. We hope you like it.

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With the previous post, tokyo’s yamanote line, mapp : : tokyo published its 100th post. It’s a milestone worth reflecting on – an indulgence, I know, but I’ll make it short.

This blog actually began as an idea for an iOS app, but for various reasons, it morphed into a website that is part magazine, part travel guide, part cultural anthropology and part tribute to one of the world’s great cities, publishing new content on Japanese culture, design and media on a weekly basis, creating a digital tapestry of – as the blurb says – cool stuff in Tokyo and Japan.

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Tokyo is a vast city. Its unique urban ‘center’ is actually a cluster of business and commercial hubs, most of which form a rough circle around the heart of the city: the Imperial Palace, some entertainment districts and well-heeled residential neighborhoods dotted with foreign embassies, temples and parks.

Public transport is part of the ethos of Tokyo’s culture – especially trains and different stations even have their own signature tunes, with Takdanobaba famous for using the theme music of Astro Boy. The city famously has an extensive transport network featuring one of the world’s most sophisticated rail networks, comprising an array of private and public train and subway lines; there are even the mandatory hi-tech monorails. The jewel in the crown is the Yamanote line, Japan Rail East’s loop line, identified by its lime green strip livery and station signage. The Yamanote, or 山手線 – Yamanote-sen, is the line that connects the city’s most important transport hubs, its business and government centers and its top shopping and entertainment districts. It’s the line that acts as a conduit for commuters who feed into it from Tokyo’s suburbs and beyond, using many of its stations as interchanges.

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