A visit to Akasaka’s android maid cafe

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By Cara Clegg

Business district by day, at night Akasaka in Tokyo transforms into an area of dazzling nightlife, a hip and happening place where the local execs can easily spend their hefty paychecks. But among the trendy neon-lit clubs, there’s one cafe that doesn’t quite fit in: The Android Idol Caffe.

The theme of the cafe is that the girls serving you in their cute maid outfits are actually Android Idols (Androidol, or Andoroidoru in Japanese), created by a boy-genius in the year 20-something, and brought back to our time through a convenient time-slip. And you, the customer, are there to nurture them.

Despite having the technology to create these lifelike androids, our wunderkid did not yet have the key to giving them “emotions”. He has a program that could be the answer, but for it to be effective he needs your help. By talking and interacting with you, these poor emotionless Androidols will slowly develop feelings that will elevate them above the level of your iPhone, and get them thinking that maybe they’re a real girl after all.

By becoming regular patrons, customers can “load” their Androidols with extra “options”, such as singing karaoke on the in-café stage. The girls are also “programmed” with a personality type (cheeky little sister, otaku, etc.) so you can pick the right one for you.

Putting aside the obvious issues of a cafe where girls pretend to be robots so that you can “train” them into having feelings, the most unusual thing about the shop is its location. No one would bat an eyelid at this kind of place if it were in Akihabara, Japan’s otaku paradise, but finding it in Akasaka is pretty unexpected.

We asked the owner why he decided to open the cafe in Akasaka of all places. His response?

“I want to spread this kind of nurturing-type girls cafe to the world. The foreigners who come to Akihabara are all tourists, but Akasaka is a global business hub. I thought that by establishing the shop here, we might be able to appeal to foreign business men.”

It’s an unexpectedly ambitious aim. Unfortunately, in practice, it seems like the number of customers who fit the “foreign businessman” criteria is pretty low. Will the idea really catch on abroad?

■ Androidol Caffe Address: Tokyo, Minato-ku, Akasaka 3-17-1 KDG Building 1F Open: Monday-Thursday, Sunday 5 p.m.~midnight, Friday & Saturday 5 p.m.~4 a.m., 365 days a year

Source: My Navi

Read more stories on RocketNews24. -- Shady Maid Cafes Found in Osaka
-- Vietnamese Trade Ao Dai for Anime-Inspired Uniforms -- Moscow’s First Maid Cafe is Japan-Approved

© RocketNews24

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No one would bat an eyelid at this kind of place if it were in Akihabara, Japan’s otaku paradise, but finding it in Akasaka is pretty unexpected.....................I do believe training requires adequate funding ( $ ).

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