An eco oasis in Tokyo’s concrete jungle, Biotop is the kind of store that looks more like a home. The kind of home we want to live in. Its three floors of “all the things we ever wanted to buy” are connected by wide winding staircases and at the peak of the building is a magical treehouse.
Even the plants are cool here. They dangle from beige leather macrame holders, they grow from moss balls, or they just exist nonchalantly in nothing except air (tillandsia are having a moment in Tokyo). They also seem to sprout from the very exterior of the spaceship-esque building, located in Meguro.
Embracing the concept of a select store, a Japanese term that essentially refers to a boutique selling a variety of curated brands and items, Biotop brings you a mix of local and international beauty, fashion, food and greenery. The clothes are high-end and the specific selection of designers rotates depending on what’s on trend.
When we visited, they were showcasing a pop-up range of items from New York-based label Khaite, while the Japanese brands that caught our attention included Visvim, Blamink, Fumika Uchida and Nowos.
As for beauty, most of the cosmetics on offer are made with only natural ingredients. Those in the know will gravitate towards the Japanese organic brand Three, and the Italian fragrance range Santa Maria Novella.
For lunch, dinner and the occasional live music act, head up to the top floor where you’ll find the restaurant called Like. The French cuisine-trained chef puts an interesting spin on Asian dishes (and an equally interesting spin on the artsy décor).
We tucked into a plate of soft buttery gyoza that was drizzled in smooth creamy peanut sauce, sprinkled with crunchy green onion, and enhanced with just the right bite of chili. Rounded off with a couple of glasses of organic red wine and a heady terrace breeze and we just might have convinced ourselves that a Bunny Clutch bag is something we simply cannot live without.
The TW Ed’s 5 Favorite Biotop Picks
Clockwise from above left:
On our must-have list: Khaite jacket featured in the store’s most recent pop-up range, ¥205,000
Your winter walking shoes are sorted with these Converse for Biotop Jack Purcell sneakers, ¥15,000
Start your day with a giggle by using this Japanese haircare range: Sense of Humour Dewy Shampoo, ¥5,200, and Conditioner, ¥6,400
A modern take on traditional Japanese zori sandals, these slip-ons are made by Jojo, a 100-year-old shop in Kyoto, ¥25,000
These adorable Bunny Clutch bags by British designer Hillier Bartley are exclusively sold in Japan at Biotop, ¥100,000
Visit Biotop’s Osaka and Fukuoka Branches Too…
Next year, Biotop celebrates its 10th anniversary. And what a successful decade it’s been for the select store. Following on from the flagship Tokyo shop, the Osaka branch was opened in 2014 and the Fukuoka leg in 2019. As is fitting for a store that bases its philosophy on the idea of an ecosystem, Biotop takes its time to open new branches, making sure that the location and surroundings are ideal for its purpose. Aside from offering the kind of place where people might want to come and spend an entire day, Biotop aims to revitalize neighborhoods by attracting more foot traffic and thereby encouraging other new shops and restaurants to open in the area. What’s more, the shop donates one percent of its profits to More Trees (more-trees.org), a forest conservation organization led by Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto. More trees, yes please and thank you, Biotop.
For more information, go to biotop.jp
Photographs by David Jaskiewicz