Tokyo restaurant refuses service to all-male groups of customers

By Casey Baseel, RocketNews24

During rush hour, a number of Japan’s busier commuter rail lines designate cars as being for female passengers only. Likewise, it’s standard practice at video game arcades for the sticker picture booth section to be off-limits to men unless they’re accompanied by a female customer.

In both cases, the aim is to make women feel safer in a situation where men may try to grope or otherwise accost them by taking advantage of a lack of mobility or peripheral vision. But while neither one of those factors is really in effect at ConTERRAZZA, an Italian restaurant in Tokyo, the eatery nonetheless refuses service to all-male groups of diners.

Japanese Twitter user @araichuu snapped a photo of a sign outside ConTERRAZZA that diagrams the policy. Female customers are welcome, as are men who come as a pair with a woman or in a group that includes women. However, all-make groups, as well as men looking to dine alone, will be turned away.

The establishment, which opened in July, is unabashed regarding the rule, going so far as to enthusiastically tout it in ConTERRAZZA’s self-introduction of its page on popular Japanese restaurant website Guru Navi, which opens with:

“The first restaurant in Japan to prohibit all-male groups. A new style of all-you-can-eat-and-drink Italian restaurant that’s kind to women. And can you believe it? We even offer all-you-can-eat Häagen-Dazs!”

Surprisingly, the restaurant is located in Shinjuku Ward’s Kabuki-cho, one of Tokyo’s seediest red light districts that’s packed with hostess clubs, sexy massage parlors, and other lascivious male-oriented services. ConTERRAZZA boasts, though, that it wants to defy expectations for the neighborhood by “providing a place for women who want to enjoy themselves to their heart’s content, without worrying about men looking at them.”

To clarify, ConTERRAZZA isn’t a host club, butler cafe, or any sort of other food and drink provider serving titillation for ladies along with its fare. It’s a legitimate restaurant, which has some online taking issue with its essentially labeling half the population as undesirables who can’t be trusted on the premises. Still, men aren’t completely banned from the place, so if the food is good enough maybe we’ll see services popping up where men can hire a woman to get their group in the door, as long as they pay for her food too.

Sources: Hamster Sokuho, Guru Navi

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Japanese woman arrested after drugging dates with chocolate, robbing them blind -- Four things women are banned from doing in Japan【Women in Japan Series】 -- Survey reveals that secretaries in Japan say ‘no’ to these types of husband

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This is discriminatory and shouldn't be legal. Imagine the reaction if these rules applied to women.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Can you imagine the outrage if the situation was reversed

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Unjustifiable discrimination. Period.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Can you imagine the outrage if the situation was reversed

As smokers seem never to protest against anti-smoking nazis, nor do men hardly ever complain against hypocritical gender discrimination against them.

I notice in the sign that even one guy alone is not permitted.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Kabuki-cho has as many male host clubs as female nowadays.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And here I thought we were on the 21st century.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They will soon feel the hit to their bottom line.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I have noticed there are a lot of places where there are a lot of men dining alone (or in large groups) and usually there are no women in there. I guess they are scared to go inside? Once, when I was still fresh off the boat in Tokyo, I went to a curry restaurant and after eating I realized that I was the only woman inside. I felt uncomfortable. After seeing a lot of places like that I concluded that the women here avoid places where a lot of men go on purpose. Big problem. I am willing to bet that both sexes alienating each other is one the reasons for low sex/marriage/birth rates in this country.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So, I cannot eat with my sons if my wife is busy?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I thought Japan was an advanced country. Quite shocking to see this kind of thing happening anywhere. It reminds me of apartheid in South Africa.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I thought Japan was an advanced country.

In some ways it is, in some ways it isn't.

There are plenty of discriminatory practices that are 'acceptable' in present day Japan. Ageism, sexism. There are even female-only train cars, but none for the men.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I imagine my Japanese friends who are gay will be quite disappointed by this policy. My lesbian friend will probably agree that this is discriminatory against men, however.

Oh, excuse me. I forgot for a moment that there ARE no gay or lesbian Japanese! (So many people in Japan think that.)

I could understand barring a rowdy group of any kind, but don't they have the balls to decide that case-by-case? I guess not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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