A pack of motorcyclists leading the hearse of a fellow bike enthusiast; a small boat carrying the coffin of a fishing buff: Unique funeral arrangements such as these are starting to crop up in Japan as bereaved families add a personal touch and a nod to their late loved ones' lifestyles and tastes.

Urban Funes Corp., which manages some 2,000 funeral ceremonies annually in the Tokyo metropolitan area, carefully tailors services to the wishes of the bereaved, consulting with relatives and, in some cases, with even former friends and workplace colleagues.

To smoothly craft and conduct such ceremonies, the company has assembled a team of professionals it tastefully describes as "ending planners."