Though a little dated, better late than never. As with every winter, I make a yearly trip back to Asia and I always stop by Japan for a couple of days just to indulge myself in the wonderful place known as Akihabara. This time was no exception and with the short time I had, I made a quick stop over to Akihabara's Good Smile Cafe.
Akihabara is a constantly changing within Tokyo, and sometimes shops move around throughout the years, therefore, here is a convenient map for exactly where the Akihabara Good Smile Cafe is. Keep note, the pictures were taken in December of 2011. The location may have changed since I last visited.
I also happened to make several trips to Taiwan's newly opened Good Smile Cafe. Full review of the place can be found here:
Photos after the break.
The Good Smile Cafe in Akihabara is located on the 5th floor of AKIBAカルチャーズZONE. As you exit the elevator you'll be presented a long hallway which leads to the reception area of the cafe. The reception area also acts as a mini-shop selling character goods and many GSC figures.
Good Smile Cafe's are usually themed to some recent popular anime. At the time of my visit they were sporting Madoka Magica and Type-Moon. From the shelves, to the walls, to the stage area, they decorated the cafe with items from the shows. Entry is free into the Good Smile Cafe, however you are encouraged to order at least a drink. Photos are allowed for everything in there. A rather rare model for this type of cafe and very foriegner friendly.
The walls are lined with production art and the display cases are filled with almost every major figure Good Smile Company has produced. Though not related to Madoka or Type-Moon, they displayed Nendoroids and figmas from K-ON!, to Nanoha, Moe-tan, to even Mikey Mouse. From the ceiling they hung poster art of the shows and oddly enough every rendition of every witch seen in Madoka Magica.
The food within the cafe is so-so. Normal cafe food, from the standard curry with rice, hamburger steak or hot tea. The cafe is more of a novelty cafe than a place for your to eat and get full. The cool thing about ordering food here at the Good Smile Cafe is that each time you order something, depending on the item you ordered, they will usually bring out a special coaster or placemat that is themed and goes along with your food. A good example would be, if you ordered the peach-flavored drink, not only would the drink be colored light-pink but the coaster given would contain some art of Madoka. This applied to not only drinks but the desserts as well. A real challenge for anyone who wishes to collect all the limited coasters and placemats.
Amibent music from the shows are usually played throughout the cafe. It was mostly Madoka music. The stage area was decorated with a large Charlotte, in which you can stand underneath it and take photos. A large projector and screen was also set-up, along with two HDTVs, just cycling through art from the shows. Near the back wall, the cafe had a small corner with a guest-book. Filled with previous signatures and tons of Madoka or Type-Moon fan art, the book was a good place for you to leave your mark.
Overall the experience of the Good Smile Cafe was very pleasant. Though the drink and food items were a little expensive in comparison, if you only go inside to grab a drink, it shouldn't break your wallet. This place is definitely a must go to any individual visiting Akihabara.