In the recent past, Starbucks has been opening cafes in historic buildings in Japan. In this feature, we visited the second store that has been opened in a registered tangible cultural property. Starbucks Coffee Hirosaki Park Front Store (スターバックスコーヒー 弘前公園前店), located in Hirosaki in Aomori Prefecture, is situated in front of Hirosaki Castle, one of the most famous cherry blossom viewing spots in Japan.
The building was built in the 1910s as an Official Residence of a commander in the army. It incorporates elements of Japanese- and European-style structures.
Even the Starbucks sign is carved on a wooden board giving it a warm, classic feel.
These plaques indicate that the building is a Registered Tangible Cultural Property.
Once you step inside, you are instantly taken back to the Taisho Period. The wooden touches throughout with light streaming in from the shoji and latticed windows creates a soft warmth.
The ceiling reflects the immense attention to detail in terms of craftsmanship and how beautifully the wood has been used.
Simple bamboo-strip orb lanterns are quintessentially Japanese.
The interiors are redone to maintain the original design while adding modern, urban touches.
No matter where you look, your eyes are bound to linger admiring the structural details. This is a photo wall showing a history of over 100 years.
Just come in and feel relaxed in this gorgeous coffee shop with the intoxicating aroma of coffee wafting through.
Tsugaru koginzashi, a traditional embroidery technique from Aomori, is used to design the sofa backrests.
It was also awarded the Good Design Best 100 award.
We visited in spring and many sakura-related products were available for purchase.
The latte comes with latte art featuring cherry blossoms. How pretty!
Other than the sakura goodies and drinks, you can also enjoy an AR display.
There are 4 patterns to play with and this one has “bear-istas” holding a doughnut.
Isn’t this is a fabulous way to incorporate tech within a traditional space?
If you plan on visiting Aomori, then you must add this beautiful cafe to your list.
Starbucks Coffee Hirosaki Park Front Store
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