Globally, many people believe we are living in an era where robots will soon take over human jobs. In Japan, due to a declining and ageing population, there aren’t enough people to do jobs, and somehow, it seems fit to have robots do the work instead.
In this feature, we talk about Pepper Parlor, a cafe where humans and robots work together. For those who aren’t in the know, Pepper is a humanoid robot developed by Softbank to interact with humans. Pepper Parlor is located in the newly renovated Tokyu Plaza Shibuya, a few minutes walk from Shibuya Station.
At the entrance to the cafe, you will find Pepper-Kun waving to you, asking you to check your body temperature and sanitise your hands.
Then you see a few Peppers at the counter for ordering food.
A touch panel tablet is placed at the counter. Extremely easy to operate with options of using English, Japanese or Chinese.
The first step is to specify the number of customers.
You can choose from a wide range of desserts, savoury dishes, hot or cold beverages as well as alcoholic drinks.
The Half Gourmet Waffle Sets, which come with a drink, are perfect for when you’re quite hungry.
If you’re in a group, you could also order some crunchy appetizers or salads.
Those not wanting a bite to eat can just grab a drink. A nice spot to chill after a shopping spree in Shibuya.
Once you have placed the order, you will be requested to pay using a credit or debit card. You cannot use cash here. After payment, you will receive a receipt that you bring to the adjacent counter where staff will be waiting to take your order.
The seating is quite unique. You have the option of choosing tables with or without Pepper. If you feel like having a chat or finding information, you can sit with the humanoid robot. For those wishing for some peace and quiet, choose one without Pepper.
No need to fret for solo travelers as there are plenty of single seats too.
If you choose a table with Pepper, then be prepared for him to join in the conversation!
On placing your order, you will get this small gadget which detects the table you are sitting at. This gadget provides information to the staff of your location so that you can be served without any confusion by Pepper or the staff.
We ordered a raspberry cocoa shake, which was quite huge.
Served with chocolate sprinkles, the bitter taste of chocolate perfectly contrasts the sweet and sour taste of the raspberries.
You can also play games using the tablet on Pepper if you have nothing to do…
Or find out what’s in your horoscope for the day.
It’s quite a unique experience to see a robot posing delightfully in the cafe.
You can take amazing photos with Pepper too.
Every half hour, there is a robot show with music that creates a cheerful atmosphere in the cafe.
If you plan to visit Japan in the near future, don’t miss out on this spot in the fashion hub of Tokyo.
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