If you seek unique things to do in Tokyo, Maid Cafe is a fun choice. This article is my brief guide to maid cafes and my experience.
What are maid cafes?
Maid cafe is a typical cafe where the female staff wears the costumes of the “maids” in the comics. Blond hair, blue eyes, fair skin, pink lips, and smiles.
In Tokyo, you can find most of the maid cafes in Akihabara. This area is a paradise for Japanese electronic goods and an excellent location for Otaku – anime enthusiasts.
Some famous maid cafes in Akihabara:
- Cure Maid Cafe: This was the first maid cafe in Akihabara in 2001. The cafe has a Victorian theme.
Everything in the maid cafe is decorated with pink tones and cute images. You can notice them from small objects such as cups, pens, or pictures of cute animals.
The story of Maid Cafes
There’s a story behind the start of Maid Cafes.
In modern Japanese society, Japanese life is highly stressful, with many people feeling depressed, overwhelmed, and lonely with no one to share with.
Seizing the situation, Maid Cafe – a cafe with “maids” was born to serve the needs of communicating and making friends of people under the pressure of work.
Usually, they would come here on weekends or for free time just for an hour to talk to the “maid.”
Visiting Maid cafe, customers need to follow specific rules to protect the maids from going beyond the limit.
For example, the girls here are entirely anonymous, with no real names. And some places don’t allow guests to take photos with them.
Maid cafe rules
- Guests cannot physically touch the maids.
- Guests are not allowed to take photos of maids, except for a fee. However, you can take pictures of food and drinks.
- Cannot ask personal information or phone numbers of maids
My trip to maid cafes in Tokyo
“Visiting Akihabara, don’t miss maid cafes!” My friends told me when they knew that I was coming to Tokyo.
It was my third time visiting Tokyo, but the city still had many things that I hadn’t discovered. And the maid cafe was one of them. So, curious, I went to Akihabara district to give it a try.
Walking around Akihabara, I saw a few “maid” characters on the streets. They stood outside the shop to distribute leaflets and introduced themselves.
Cure Maid Cafe
- Address: Japan, 〒101-0021 Tokyo, Chiyoda City, Sotokanda, 1 Chome−2−7 オノデン本店 4F ジーストア・アキバ
- Opening hours: 11 am – 7 pm
I decided to visit Cure Maid Cafe first. It’s said to be the first maid cafe in Akihabara. The original one.
The concept of having girls wearing suggestive maid-inspired attire while overacting feels a bit of a strange mix to me. Luckily, I didn’t feel comfortable there.
The cafe was cozy and had cute decorations, and the waitresses wore French-maid costumes. I ordered Omurice (Japanese Omelette Rice), and my dish had a cute drawing with ketchup.
This cafe is a bit different from my expectation. It’s more or less just a regular cafe. However, the price was reasonable, and the tea and dessert were decent. Omurice was not the best, though.
- Address: Japan, 〒101-0021 Tokyo, Chiyoda City, Sotokanda, 1 Chome−11−4 3F～7F ミツワビル
- Opening hours: 10 am – 8 pm
I visited @home cafe with a friend the next day. We were pretty impressed with the building, and each floor has its theme and decoration. So if you happen to find a long line, keep going up the staircase until you find a less busy floor.
After a short wait, we were assigned a table and a “maid.”
The experience was about 1 hour long, and we ordered some kawaii food and drinks and purchased a photo opportunity with the maids.
Our maid was very energetic, cute, and friendly. We love the part about doing a magic spell and the drawing on our dish. Unfortunately, we didn’t play any games with our maid but did see others playing games.
Overall, I enjoyed this experience and would recommend it. However, I prefer @home cafe more than Cure Maid cafe. There’re more things to do, and you can interact with the maids more.
Also, it’s better to visit a maid cafe with a friend so that you have someone to talk to when waiting between interactions.