Starbucks, always happy to adapt itself to local tastes and customs, is getting into the Oshogatsu (as Japan call New Year’s) spirit with a new line of drinkware and lifestyle goods bearing classic Japanese symbols of prosperity, but with a healthy dash of playful cuteness.
Starting things off, this tumbler-style stainless steel bottle bears two maneki neko/beckoning cats, with their paws raised up to wave good fortune toward you while also wearing Starbucks’ signature green aprons.
On the backside, you’ll find an image of Mt Fuji. Japanese folk wisdom holds that seeing Mt Fuji in your first dream of the new year is a sign of good things to come, and if nothing else, the bottle’s securable top will make sure you don’t start 2020 by spilling hot coffee all over yourself.
If you prefer your Mt Fuji drinking vessels with a handle, there’s also a mug modeled after Japan’s highest peak. And while Japan doesn’t celebrate the Lunar New Year, it does have a soft spot for the animals of the Chinese Zodiac, represented by its adorable Year of the Rat mug. The mug comes in 89-milliliter and slightly less roly-poly 355-milliliter versions. Both have auspicious plum blossom patterns on the back.
Another popular good-luck symbol in Japan is the daruma, a round-doll that’s supposed to grant wishes. They’re most commonly red, but can also be found in different colors. The ones on Starbucks’ mugs, tumblers, and drink bottles are, naturally, green.
▼ Sumo wrestlers guest star on the tumbler, while beckoning cats and Mt Fuji help out on the bottle.
If your love of Japanese aesthetics is laser-focused on sumo wrestlers, there’s a sumo bottle. Alternatively, if you want a little of everything, Starbucks is also offering a design with Mt Fuji, daruma (including one in a Starbucks apron), beckoning cats, sumo bears, ninja bears, and Shiba inu dogs.
Other items in the line include traditional tenugui wrapping cloths, plushie daruma charms, and a lucky pouch that a Shiba has wandered into.
The lineup is available at Starbucks Japan branches as well as through its online shop here, with prices ranging from 1,400 yen for the small Year of the Rat mug up to 4,400 yen for the daruma/Mt Fuji/beckoning cat bottle.
Source: Starbucks via Entabe
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