by Kurt Chalmers
It had been a while since I had been over to Jiyugaoka, which has fast gone from kitsch Tokyo suburb to shopping and social hub. It boasts convenient access to central Tokyo (via the Toyoko line) and ample high-quality housing has made it a hot spot of east Tokyo living, popular with the younger expat community.
As soon as you leave the station’s south exit you are bombarded with quality high street brands all along the cherry blossom-studded pedestrian streets. Brands such as French Connection, Adidas (Originals store), Tommy Hilfiger, Gap, and Topshop are just some of the big high street names present.
On the opposite side of the station I was happy to see 0′ Carolan’s (the only pink Irish pub in Asia!) thriving under new manager Justin. The location is just opposite the Aoyama bookstore (great for foreign magazines). A preferred meeting place for the local international community, monthly events include the Pack’n Mack’n Show show featuring Japanese TV celebrity presenter Patrick as well as a monthly New Orleans’ style jazz gig. The fare is hearty pub grub with a good selection of foreign ales and beers. They also have a conservatory area where pets are welcome.
(1) O’ CAROLAN’S IRISH PUB
(2) FRENCH CONNECTION
1 -8-21 Jiyugaoka
(3) adidas ORIGINALS