Cafes nowadays are a booming business in the food and beverage department. Almost everywhere you go, they’ll be a new cafe opening up somewhere nearby you. It’s sort of like a norm now where most cafes are being branded as a hipster or the in-trend thing to start a business with. However, for me, cafes are more of a place to keep my friends and family close and also that one book you’ve been dying to finish in a peaceful place and cafe is the perfect spot. However, because of the common cafe vibe, there are some ‘think-over-the-box’ cafe owners who dare to go beyond the normality of how a cafe should be. Here are some of the quirkiest cafes around the world.
A. The Kid-Mai Death Cafe, Bangkok
The Kid-Mai Death Cafe looks more like the scene of a funeral than a place you’d want to hang out with your friends. Black is the dominant colour, but that’s probably the least morbid thing about this establishment. Wreath of flowers are used as floral decorations and on the menu, you have names like “ageing”, “illness” and even “death”. Plus, to earn a discount, there’s a coffin for visitors to lie down into! Yikes! However, for the owner of the cafes, they prefer the term “death awareness cafe” to encourage people to enjoy every moment of their life.
B. The New Lucky Restaurant, India
Have you ever imagine what it’s like to dine with the dead? Well, you can do that in The New Lucky Restaurant in Ahmadabad, India. This place is built literally around a cemetery so you get to have the full experience too. You may think it’s creepy but this place became popular due to its unusual settings. The restaurant owner, Krishnan Kutti didn’t want to disrespect over the gravestones when he first bought the property. Every morning Krishnan would make sure he cleans and puts flowers on them.
C. Fortezza Medicea, Italy
What could be worse than death when you’re alive? Serving time in prison. In 2007, a restaurant opened in Fortezza Medicea, near Pisa, Italy. To make this prison cafe more believable, the wait staff are the inmates with some serving life sentences. You’d think that it’s scary to have your food served by real-life murderers, however, this restaurant is extremely popular and some even have to book for weeks in advance to get a spot on the table. The concept of this is mainly a rehabilitation program for the inmates.
Animal Themed Cafes
A. The Owl Cafe, Tokyo
While Japanese are creative in redefiniding the ordinary, owl cafes are a concept that is unique about Japan. There are about four owl cafes in the Tokyo area. You can pet the birds and take photos (no flash photography) with them. About $12 will even get you an hour-long session with the birds of prey. It’s almost like a theme-park attraction than an animal cafe.
B. The Huskitory, Melaka
Who doesn’t love dogs? Especially huskies. Out of the many cafes in Malaysia, one must experience this place. The Huskies are all well-trained and groomed by the owners. Some of this Huskies are also award championship winners in a dog competition. If you’re wondering if you can kidnap the dogs back home, you can’t as these Huskies are all privately owned. Be there about 5-6 pm or 7-8pm daily for their feeding time too.
C. Les Cafe Des Chats, Paris
Love to purr all the way to Paris and drink coffee with cats? Here’s your chance to do so if you’re a cat lover. In 2013, Parisians witnessed the opening of France’s first ever cat café in the Marais. Ever since it’s opening, the place is popular and is always high on demand to the owners would recommend booking before coming in. It’s so popular that they had to turn away 300 potential customers because it was so packed.
Movie/ TV Show Themed Cafes
A. Giger- Bar, Switzerland
The fascinating thing about this place is probably the intricacy of the design and feel you’ll get once oyu enter in. It might feel like your dinner might pop out of your chest mid-meal and scatter around the room. For those of you are unfamiliar with Giger, he is the Swiss surrealist artist who did the set designs and visual effects for the film Alien.
B. Alice In Wonderland, Tokyo
In the Tokyo suburb of Shinjuku, lies a magical world that will transport you back to Alice In Wonderland themed cafe. Patrons would be in for an afternoon tea with a twist of immersive decors and characters mascots. Nothing beats Japan when it comes to themed cafes. There is also a Wonderland Cafe in Nottingham.
C. Breaking Bad, London
Someone call Jesse Pinkman and Heisenberg because the chemistry has gone a level up. Breaking Bad had created a large following for its unique narrative. As you enter, the renovation of the interior is fitted like Walter White’s lab and the drinks come in various unique concoctions that would make you relive your favourite television moments.
D. Central Perk, Singapore
The F.R.I.E.N.D.S themed cafe is certainly a big hit and talked about when it first opened. The team led by young owners has made this possible through a crowd-funding exercise which led to the interest of investors. You can take a wonderful memory lane when pieces of Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Joey, Chandler and Ross found all around. Who knows you’ll be serenaded by Phoebe’s “Smelly Cat” song while you’re there too? Well, one can always dream.
E. The Shire Cafe, Sri Petaling
This precious cafe has been getting Lord of the Rings fans cosy enough for them. The interior is also designed like a hobbit’s home. Even the dishes have special names such as “Red Dragon Spell“ for red sauce pasta, and “The Queen”, “The King” and “The Jester” for various waffles. Also, be sure to snap a photo at this massive 3D wall decor of the hallway of Bilbo Baggins’ home!
A. Modern Toilet, Taiwan
Some of you might be grossed out by this concept let alone to eat in one. The meals here off their extensive menu are all presented in miniature toilet bowls and resemble steaming hot diarrhea. This definitely sounds like a fear factor challenge. You can upgrade your drink to have it served out of a urinal. Mind over matter guys!
B. Poop Cafe, Canada
Poop Cafe Dessert Bar, dubbed Toronto’s first toilet-themed bar that offers tasty emoji poop treats and drinks in novelty loo mugs. Hungry customers can enjoy an array of Thai, Japanese, and Korean desserts served up in a toilet, urinal, bathtub or old squat toilets while sitting on the loo – chairs made from old toilets.
Cabbages & Condoms, Bangkok
Yes, you saw that right. This is a concept restaurant in Bangkok, Thailand that was created by non- profit association. The restaurant promotes family planning, uses condoms as décor on the walls and instead of being offered an after-dinner mint, you’re offered an after-dinner condom. I had the pleasure of coming to this cafe and all I can say is Thailand never fail to surprise me!
Twin Stars In Moscow, Russia
You might think you’re seeing double after all those shots of vodka, but it’s actually because the entire waitstaff is made up of identical twins. The restaurant was inspired by a 1964 Russian film called Kingdom of Crooked Mirrors, which is about a girl who looks in a mirror and sees her twin in an alternate universe. After throwing a few back, you might actually start seeing quadruple.
There you have it, some of the world’s themed cafes that may have made you cringe or in awe. Which one would you like to visit? Tell us!