Feb 26, 2015

AKB48 Theater logs millionth visitor since 2005

The AKB48 Theater in Tokyo’s Akihabara district, the base for all-girl chorus and dance troupe AKB48, on Wednesday welcomed its millionth visitor since opening on Dec. 8, 2005. Its beginnings were underwhelming: There were only seven people in the audience during the group’s first ...

Ninja promote 'cool' vending machines

Feb 19, 2015

Ninja promote 'cool' vending machines

by Shusuke Murai

To lure foreign tourists, especially Chinese arriving in large numbers for the Lunar New Year holiday, JR East is promoting Japan’s cutting-edge vending machine technology at JR Akihabara Station in Tokyo, with staff dressed in ninja and kimono outfits. JR East Water Business Co. ...

'Gacha gacha' machines not just for kids anymore

Aug 14, 2014

'Gacha gacha' machines not just for kids anymore

by Asako Takaguchi

Among the wide array of vending machines peddling items from the everyday to the obscure, one staple in Japan is the toy-dispensing “gacha gacha,” which is named after the handle-turning noise that precedes the release of the plastic capsule. While the majority of gacha ...

Legendary Akihabara Radio Store closing its doors after six decades

Nov 25, 2013

Legendary Akihabara Radio Store closing its doors after six decades

The Akihabara Radio Store, the shopping center of small merchants that pioneered the development of Tokyo’s Akihabara neighborhood as the world’s largest commercial district for electronics, will be open for the last time this Saturday. Facing a decline in customers, the owners decided last ...

Six injured by damaged Akihabara escalator

Apr 25, 2013

Six injured by damaged Akihabara escalator

Six people were injured when their hands got caught in a damaged escalator at JR Akihabara Station in Tokyo on Wednesday, police said. At around 9:25 a.m., three men and three women got their hands pinched between the escalator’s handrail and a 50-cm-long metal ...