A Bookstore that Charges an Entrance Fee


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The places where you can encounter books in Japan are becoming even more diverse now. For instance, Morioka Shoten is a bookstore/gallery founded by Yoshiyuki Morioka who would theme every exhibition in the venue around a certain book. The newly opened Hakone Honbako is an onsen ryokan with a huge collection of books that can compare to that of a library. The shop we are introducing this time, Bunkitsu, is at the same time a library, a bookstore, and a cafe. Although Bunkitsu is still not opened yet, it has already become a trending topic that gets everyone excited. What really triggered people’s curiosity is probably the ¥1,500 entrance fee. What gives Bunkitsu the confidence to charge customers a fee for entering a bookstore?

Located in Roppongi, Bunkitsu is divided into four areas including a bookstore, a reading room, a research center, and a cafe. The bookstore stocks more than 30,000 books and 90 magazine titles, visitors can simply pick their copy and head to the reading room. They can enjoy free coffee and Sencha from the cafe and take a rest there. At the research center, visitors can grab a spot to discuss books with their friends without disturbing others; they can even hold mini-conferences. On top of it, the staffs of Bunkitsu all possess great knowledge regarding books, so they could give recommendations based on the readers’ interests.

Bunkitsu provides readers with a relaxing space where they can spend as much time as they want to read at leisure. Not only can they delve into the sea of books, but they can also have guidance with choosing books. This is perhaps the reason why the bookstore is such an attractive place for book lovers.