Whether you’re interested in trying the newest gourmet trends, unique art exhibitions or finding the perfect gift idea for a loved one, Shinjuku is the place that has it all. While it can be difficult to find new events and activities these days (and even more so if you follow stricter pandemic safety guidelines), here’s what’s new in Shinjuku in February and the following weeks. Also, check out some of the January events that are still ongoing.
If you visit any events and venues, please follow social distancing measures and guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Also, make sure to check for changes in time and dates, since new rules might be in place later that were not there at the time of writing.
Art & Exhibitions in Shinjuku
Ever been interested in the evolution of fashion in Europe? If you have, the Bunka Gakuen Costume Museum has your curiosity covered. Their European Mode exhibition explains the evolution of women’s fashion from the early 19th Century to the 1930s in Europe. During this era, women’s fashion changed drastically due to factors such as the increase of transportation systems, the idea that everyone should play sports for health and fitness, and the feminist movement. These lifestyle changes have contributed to the invention of women’s sportswear and other evolutionary fashion designs that arose during this time.
When: Feb 18-Apr 22
If you want to learn about Japanese history and literature, it’s worth visiting the Natsume Soseki Memorial Museum. Currently, they’re holding a special exhibition to celebrate the 140th anniversary of the birth of Seifu Tsuda. Tsuda is the artist responsible for the illustration of Natsume Soseki’s autobiographical novel ‘Grass on the Wayside’ (1915). The exhibition not only lets us remember him as an artist, but also as a writer who has published more than 20 pieces of writing, impressing great writers like Soseki.
When: Jan 26-Mar 21
We’re always impressed by works done by great artists, whether they’re from the past or the present. But how about great works done by talented nameless artists? The FACE 2021 exhibition showcases works by people of all backgrounds and ages. The 83 works which were selected for this year’s exhibition are sure to move our hearts and minds in these times of difficulty.
When: Feb 13-Mar 7
Following his first exhibition, photographer Kota Kishi is holding his second exhibition at the Photographer’s gallery in Shinjuku this month. At the exhibition, you’ll find photographs from his latest photobook as well as some of his unpublished works. Most of the photographs were taken at three different districts in Japan: Kamagasaki in Osaka, Sanya in Tokyo, and Kotobukicho in Yokohama. These areas, once crowded with people, now face challenges and are losing the vitality they once had. Kishi continues to capture the lives and situations of people who struggle to live in such places.
When: Feb 23- Mar 19
Food in Shinjuku
The popular ramen restaurant Ippudo has introduced a vegan ramen dish to their menu at a few selected locations, including Shinjuku. The limited-time item has been available from February 1, a chance for vegan customers to enjoy Ippudo’s signature Akamaru Ramen. The plant-based Akamaru uses soy-milk instead of the tonkotsu broth, vegan charsiu meat, whole-wheat noodles and a tasty mushroom mix and other vegetable toppings for a meat-free but still tasty ramen dish.
When: Feb 1 – until it sells out
Kimpton Shinjuku Tokyo is still relatively new in Japan, having opened on October 2nd of 2020. District, which is a restaurant you can find inside the hotel, is a modern brasserie that changes their menu every month, each month’s choice related to the theme of diversity. In addition to the delicious monthly menu, the restaurant’s new takeout menu ‘District To Go’ has started on February 17. You can order a whole dinner set or just dessert to enjoy at home or the office, with a 25% discount on weekdays. Reservations for takeout are also available on Uber Eats.
When: Available for pickup from 11:30 – 20:00＊From March, 12:00pm ～ 8:00pm
Shopping in Shinjuku
Opened on February 1st is the renewed atré Shinanomachi, previously named atré vie Shinanomachi. Since this area is known to have famous sports arenas such as the Japan National Stadium, the second floor of the shopping mall is designed with a 70-inch monitor where you’ll be able to watch the biggest game of the day. The shops include cafes and bakeries such as Starbucks and Vie de France.
When: 7:00 – 22:00 *May depend on the shop/restaurant, please refer to the website for details
In Japan, spring is often connected with the idea of new beginnings and a new life. The Odakyu Department Store at Shinjuku is holding a Bridal Fair until April 4th, where you will find wedding-related items such as rings and other gifts for your special occasion.
When: Jan 27 – Apr 6
This one is literally called the New Life Fair, encouraging you to start a more mindful lifestyle through the use of quality home items. Whether you’re starting a new life with a new job or school in spring (as is usually the case in Japan), moving to a new place, or decided to renovate your home now that you’re maybe working from home, this fair would be good to browse. The first half of the fair, which started on February 15th, focuses on living space items while the second half, which starts in March is all about kitchen items.
When: Feb 15 onwards
In Japan, spring means a new school year, and most often than not, shopping for new stationery. Currently happening at Tokyu Hands Shinjuku is the Stationery Fair 2021, which is available both online and in-store. In addition to an exciting selection of Japanese stationery items to choose from, there will be workshops, on-site events and an online talk-show. While some events such as the talk-show and workshops are held in Japanese only, you can always find the best lineup of stationery products at Tokyu Hands.
When: Feb 12 – Mar 31
Know of anything exciting coming up in Shinjuku soon? Anything to add to the list? Send us tips at [email protected]
To read more about what’s new in Shinjuku, or all around Tokyo, Yokohama, Kamakura, during this month, check out TW’s other articles: