Ginza

After a tour at Tsukiji Fish Market, we proceeded to the nearby Ginza via the Shimbashi Station.  Ginza (銀座) is Tokyo’s most famous upmarket shopping, dining and entertainment district, featuring numerous department stores, boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, night clubs and cafes. You can find virtually every leading brand name in fashion and cosmetics in Ginza & it’s almost impossible to get something (even food & drinks) with a low budget haha.

Since it is too expensive to shop in Ginza, we didn’t spend a lot of time there, but only concentrated on 2 shops at the end of Chuo-dori (Ginza’s central street) – the Hakuhinkan Toy Park & Burberry.

Map of Ginza (extracted from http://www.tokyopocketguide.com)

See the red circle on the left side of the map above?  That is where Hakuhinkan & Burberry are.  Hakuhinkan Toy Park was our first stop after getting lost along the way from Shimbashi Station, so it was a great relief when we finally got in, away from the heavy rain & strong winds.

Hakuhinkan Toy Park entrance!

Hakuhinkan Toy Park has been opened since 1899 and used to be the largest toy store in Tokyo.  Now the 9-storey building is still home to one of the most impressive toy collections in the city, packed with classic & contemporary toys, an interactive arcade & racing park, restaurants, & a theatre on the top floor.  Although I am not an avid anime or stuffed toys fan, I was still intrigued by the wide variety of dolls and games available in this toy park.  In fact I almost even bought my favourite Moomin stuffed toy, but chose not to in the end as the display set was the last piece available & it was a bit dirty (since Moomin is white).  We both had a fun time browsing through the products here, & I bought quite a few boxes of limited edition Kit Kat chocolates available on the first floor as well as Disney watches from the second floor.

After Hakuhinkan Toy Park, our next stop was Burberry!  The Burberry store in Ginza is 3 storeys tall & Burberry Blue Label is at the basement.  Since Burberry Blue Label is only available in Japan, it’s almost like a must-go destination for us.  However 1 of the boutique assistants disappointed us.  We took quite some time to decide what item to buy & the China assistant was so impatient, that she asked my friend (who was still trying the bag & jacket at that time) in Mandarin “Miss, so have you decided which to buy? You seem to be pondering for too long.”  To get such comments from a service staff, especially in service-oriented Japan, was a real shock for us!  Fortunately when I wanted to pay for my wallet, it was a Japanese assistant who served me.  If not I’m not sure if I should continue my purchase or not……

We did walk down the Chuo-dori after leaving Burberry for a while but none of the shops were attractive enough to lure us in since they were mostly luxury western stores haha.  Plus the food options along this street were too expensive so we decided to leave Ginza & head back to Shinjuku for more affordable shopping & dining options.  Lol……

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