Meet the dry cleaner they call 'god'


There’s a so much talk over the level of customer service in Japan that you’d expect the locals to become desensitized to it before long. But every once in a while, a business raises the bar so much that even Japanese people can’t believe it.

One such business can be found in the posh Azabu-Juban area of Tokyo: a dry cleaner called Rejouir that is the one place that will take a paint-stained Hermes coat when no one else would dare try. One after another, customers including boutiques and other cleaners walk away satisfied. To those people, Rejouir’s president Takeshi Furuta is often referred to as “Kami” (god).

According to Furuta, “If you can put it next to a new product and see a difference, then it’s not professionally cleaned.”

Early in his 60-plus-year career, he felt that Japan was a “developing country” in terms of cleaning clothing. He then traveled to Europe to seek more advanced techniques to hone his craft.

Furuta now works out of the quaintly decorated Rejouir in Azabu-Juban – an area where chains like McDonald’s and Starbucks have to tone down their store fronts to appease the residents. In the same way, you won’t see the words “dry-cleaning” anywhere on Rejour’s store front. That would be far too gauche for the area.

From the outside, you might think that Rejour was another high-end boutique. Although it isn’t, they certainly charge like one. Depending on the specific materials, a cotton blouse might run you 5,200 yen to clean whereas a full suit may set you back 35,000 yen. Rejouir’s slogan is: “It may be expensive and slow, but it’s good.”

These are high prices indeed, but using the words “dry-cleaner” and “clean” don’t adequately describe the service that Rejour provides. By the time your clothing is returned, you may find that all of the buttons have been tightened and any fraying or wear on your hems has disappeared without even asking for it to be looked at.

The actual cleaning process is no joke either. Everything is done by hand and no corners are cut. It’s said that if you send in a stained tie, they will remove all of the stitching to ensure the dirt is dealt with thoroughly.

Here are just a couple of customer comments.

“I took a juice-stained Gucci coat to Rejouir and now I can’t even remember where the stain was, it’s so clean.”

“I couldn’t even tell the collar and cuffs were once dirty but my shirt came back to me with a very polite note telling me ‘unfortunately this was as clean as we could get it without damaging the fabric.’”

Clearly this isn’t an everyday service for most people, but if you have an article of clothing too expensive or too damaged for your local cleaner’s, try Rejouir. It will cost you both in time and money, but you can be assured it will become as clean as humanly (or godly) possible.

See Google map here.

Sources: Rejouir, Naver Matome

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Quality is GOD. Businesses should learn that. It is the rule for everything from cars and smartphones to restaurants and dry cleaners!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Cleaning and re-using clothes is great for the environment. Companies like this do a great service to society.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Most of my suits were bought for under ¥40,000 so can't imagine paying ¥35,000 to have them cleaned.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Cleaning and re-using clothes is great for the environment.

Not always. These dry cleaners use very polluting products and release them in environment without caring. Their employees have incredible cancer rates, and so do people living in houses nearby a cleaning shop. .

Companies like this do a great service to society.

Should be banned ASAP.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Most of my suits were bought for under ¥40,000 so can't imagine paying ¥35,000 to have them cleaned.

Reminds me of a time I went to Thailand. The hotel would charge about $3 to clean my shirts, but I could buy them on the streets for $2.

As for this guy, it's good to see somebody actually taking pride in their job, rather than the feigned politeness with which they do it.

All the places in my neighborhood send their stuff out to big cleaning factories, all they do is smile and say polite phrases while taking your clothes off the hangers and giving them to do you.

Compared to my hometown, where pretty much ALL cleaners did the cleaning on the premises, as well as various alterations. That's hard to find (if not impossible) out in my neck of the woods.

As far as "quality" being "king," that's always in the eye of the buyer. Often times "quality" means "good enough" and not too expensive.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The first time I used a Japanese 'shirt service', the work was so good, I was convinced that they had screwed up and somehow sourced a new Marks & Spencer shirt, but that was in the 90s.

Now, though, quality has been trumped by 'fit for purpose', and service is pretty sloppy. If it ain't on the standard menu of treatments and capabilities (see Cleo's chemicals), forget it.

Great to hear about Rejouir. I'm sure though, that in a city like Tokyo, it will have more affordable peers in less high-rent, high-margin areas.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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