A couple of days ago, I went to a Japanese club for the first time. I was surprised at how different it is from what I’m used to back in Canada, so I thought about doing a blog post about it. I might be wrong for a couple of things though, concerning the fact that I went to only one club in Japan, so some things might apply only to that place in particular, I wouldn’t know. Please tell me in the comments about your own experience in clubs in Japan!
First off, the club I went to is named “Atom” and is situated in the building called Dr. Jeekahn’s in Shibuya, Tokyo. It’s just in front of the famous prison-themed restaurant Alcatraz and is fairly near Shibuya station by walk.
I went on a Friday night before midnight, which means that, for women, the entrance fee was 1000 yen with two free drinks and one free ice cream of my choice — I’m very serious. I really recommend this place, it was amazing (not only for the ice cream!). Here’s a couple of differences I noticed from what I’m used to.
1. Each floor has its music genre (and the songs are old but gold!)
In Atom, there were three floors; the top was a hip-hop and rap floor, the middle was techno and pop, and the last one was a mix of smooth and pop music. And all those floors had those old songs I used to listen when I was a teenager. I kid you not when I say we danced on songs like “Crazy In Love” by Beyoncé, “Get Low” by Lil’ John, “2 Step” by UNK, and International Love (less old, but still) by Pitbull and Chris Brown. Don’t get me wrong, there was also some recent songs, but I was really happy to dance on older songs of my teenagehood!
2. The free cup of ice cream
It’s probably a special thing from Atom’s club, but it was really awesome. When you danced a lot and have fun, you get sweaty pretty quickly (don’t try to deny it!) so it’s nice to have some free ice cream of your choice!
3. The opening hours
In Québec (Canada), usually the clubs/bars close at 3 AM. In Japan, it’s a bit different.
The thing is, the last train of the day to go home is always around 11:00 or midnight, and the first train is around 5:00 in the morning. Accordingly, the clubs don’t close before 5 AM. So, in Japan, when you go for “a nightout”, you really do go for a nightout.
4. The “showtime” — aka a very beautiful woman in lingerie dancing on the stage for a couple of minutes
It’s exactly what it sounds like! Oddly enough, it was super fun and it really made the party go up a notch! She also gave some lightning sticks to the crowd during the show.
5. There are “Ladys’ Seat” everywhere
What’s that? Ladys’ Seat? I don’t know about you, but I had never heard/saw that anywhere before, let alone in a club. The Ladys’ Seats were actually a place where, obviously, only women can sit. There are tables and chairs and sofas, the area “secured” by a red ribbon joined by poles. You go there with your girls, and you feel like V.I.Ps (while some creepy men check you out like predators, but that’s another story).
Also, I don’t know about you all, but generally when I go to clubs, I go with my friends as a girls nightout of dancing and having fun together. Unfortunately, there are always some men who, even when you’re clearly not interested, keep wanting to dance with you/talk to you. Those Ladys’ Seats were awesome because we could have a break of that while drinking and relaxing. Although sometimes, some daring men take a step across the ribbon and have a bit of chat, but they would never fully step in the zone, and most of them didn’t dare to even talk to us. And sometimes, there was even enough place to dance, so we would just dance there instead of on the dancefloor full of drunk people trying to break your group to take a girl apart (yes, it happened).
It’s seriously an ingenious thing, and I don’t know why we don’t have that where I come from.
6. The free Hair Styling Room/Ladys’ Room
Just before the entrance for the pop music floor, there was this room where only ladies were accepted most of the time. But for about an hour, it was changed to a hair styling room, where you could go and one of the employees would curl your hair or make you an updo. Never saw that before!
All in all, my experience was pretty amazing, so I’ll probably go for a nightout again this year! I’ll make sure to check if there’s any other differences at that time.