Once proudly web only, online sites opening brick-and-mortar stores seems to be the new trend, as evidenced by companies like EBay, Etsy, Piperlime and Warby Parker. But with a tech start-up spirit slowly taking hold in Japan, it seems as though the country is no exception. Gurunavi, a yelp-like service that offers online food and restaurant guides, has opened up their first physical store.
Located in a prime location right outside Osaka Station, “SHUN＊SHOKU LOUNGE” is part café, part information kiosk. The Kengo Kuma-desinged interior features a topographical landscape made from layered natural wooden sheets. Much of the furniture serves as a showcase to display seasonal foods that rotate in and out on a monthly basis. Over on the café customers can order smoothies and lunch boxes made from the seasonal ingredients.
The owners hope that the shop will help disperse information about Osaka’s food and dining culture, while also bridging a gap between restaurants and farmers. However, I would go just for the amazing scenery.