I went to “Harakado”, a new spot in Harajuku, Tokyo, on the opening day and found out ″Big Gap″. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

I went to “Harakado”, a new spot in Harajuku, Tokyo, on the opening day and found out ″Big Gap″.

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4.17 Open.
Supposed to be a cultural center where creators gather. ……

Harakado was born in a prime Harajuku location. Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku, diagonally across the street, changed its name to Omokado at the same time.

A new landmark “Harakado” has opened in Harajuku, Tokyo, a town that has continued to produce its own unique youth culture.

The concept is a “creative facility” that transmits new culture, and in addition to restaurants, 75 stores, including labs and studios that support creators and public bathhouses, will be open for business. On April 17, the first day of its opening, we went inside.

Harakado, with its glass-walled, futuristic-looking exterior, has nine stories above ground and three below. Despite it being a weekday afternoon, it was crowded with people.

The magazine library “COVER” on the second floor holds approximately 3,000 magazines ranging from the 1960s to the present day.

There were fashion magazines I used to read when I was in elementary school, which made me nostalgic. It’s so much fun and it’s free, so I think I’ll be exploring the other floors for a long time to come.

On the 6th floor, there is a space with a lawn where visitors can enjoy take-out food from stores. We spoke with a woman who was enjoying a gelato.

She said, “I can’t believe that I can eat ice cream on the lawn while in Harajuku. There are luxurious establishments in Tokyo that make me nervous just by entering, but I can come to Harakado during my break from work without hesitation.

With a large number of inbound visitors, Harakado has no problem attracting customers. However, the gallery and other cultural areas were sparsely populated.

From the looks of things, most visitors were simply enjoying the food and beverage space, and seemed to be enjoying themselves in a way that was far from “creating culture. However, a Harakado employee was proud of this “gap,” saying, “I have no doubt that this place will be at the forefront of the times in the future.

There is also a floor dedicated to supporting creators, but this will not be fully operational for some time to come. Culture aside, the atmosphere may be among the most enthusiastic in Tokyo.

The sixth floor is covered with grass and greenery, and has already become a gathering place for young people with a high sense of style.
Unpublished photograph of Harakado, a new spot in Harajuku, Tokyo, on the day of its opening: a big gap
Unpublished photos of Harakado, a new spot in Harajuku, Tokyo, on the day of its opening.

From the May 10 and 17, 2024 issue of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO Takayuki Ogawauchi

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