Look: This Tokyo cafe appears straight out of a manga


A Tokyo cafe is transporting customers into a "two-dimensional" world with its charmingly deceptive sketch decor.

Key points:

  • The 2D Cafe, located in Shin-Okubo — Tokyo's Koreatown — was reportedly inspired by similar concept cafes in South Korea.

  • The cafe is well-known for its 2D cake, which often gets sold out.

  • As of 2023, nearly a third of its customers came from overseas, indicating its global popularity.

The details:

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  • Opening in 2019, 2D Cafe features painted black outlines on its walls, tables and chairs, creating a visual illusion that makes it seem like one has entered a manga world.

  • The cafe offers a selection of coffee, juices and other desserts. Among the most popular items on the menu is the 770-yen ($5) 2D cake, which often sells out, owner Han Ji-ae told the Japan News.

  • The shortcake, which debuted in February 2023, is outlined by whipped cream with hemp charcoal powder, giving it the 2D effect.

  • Videos from the cafe are popular on social media. With the Japanese government's lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, the business has seen an influx of foreign customers, which make up more than 30%, Han said.

  • Aside from South Korea and Japan, similar 2D cafes and restaurants have popped up in Bali, Singapore, Dubai, Chicago and Paris.


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