Industry City, with all its artisans, tasty restaurants and unique shops, is now a major hub for Japanese culture and cuisine.
Japan Village, which is both a food hall and supermarket full of Japanese groceries, has expanded upward with a 20,000-square-foot second floor it's calling The Loft. Here, visitors can basically step into a representation of Japan with cool shops with items straight from the country as well as fun experiences like tea ceremonies and cultural classes.
Below are five reasons to visit The Loft at Japan Village:
1. Daiso is a discount store with tons of cute merch
Daiso is jam-packed with inexpensive toys, Japanese treats, items for the home and other kitschy stuff that won't break the bank—we're talking over 100,000 products! It's known for carrying Hello Kitty and Sanrio home goods, affordable cosmetics, adorable stationery, pretty tableware, useful baking tools and crafting supplies. At the end of January, Daiso announced the opening on its Instagram account and that it'll celebrate with special giveaways on February 25 and 26 at 10am.
2. It has BookOff's first Brooklyn store
BookOff is Japan’s largest chain of used bookstores offering a wide range of anime-related products, including manga, novels, CDs, DVDs, video games, figures, apparel, and accessories.
3. You can shop a beautiful selection of handmade pottery
There's a gorgeous store, Setomonoya, within The Loft that sells incredible Japanese pottery—one of the oldest Japanese crafts and art forms. From to ceramics and porcelain goods, such as teapots, teacups, and bowls, each was uniquely handmade.
4. There's Japanese skincare on site
Japanese skincare and beauty have taken the U.S. by storm, and now, you can shop from some of the best products in one spot. Beauty at The Loft is meant to introduce and highlight natural Japanese beauty products to the community, educating the New York beauty market on the benefits of Japanese cosmetics, skincare, body care and hair care products. Plus, it offers in-house nail and lash services by professional Japanese cosmetologists.
5. You can experience an authentic Japanese tea ceremony
Chashitsu, which includes the ritualistic preparation, serving, and drinking of tea representing harmony, respect, purity, and tranquility, will be offered on a regular basis at The Loft. When we got a preview of The Loft, tea ceremony master and owner of teahouse Setsugekka, Souheki Mori, took us through a ceremony that was grounding and peaceful and ended with incredible matcha tea and mochi.
In addition, The Loft will hold cultural events and food fairs. This weekend is a Local Specialty Food Fair featuring bites from Japanese prefectures that's free to attend:
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The Loft will continue to evolve and grow to include Japanese fabrics, educational classes and more.
"Since the opening of Japan Village, we have aimed to create a culture of 'omotenashi,'" the Japanese approach to great hospitality and a mutual respect for our guests," remarks co-owner Erina Yoshida. "Our expansion in Industry City with The Loft is an exciting new way to support Japanese makers, lift up our community, and celebrate Japanese culture in a way that is welcoming to all."
You can swing by this weekend to check it all out on the 2nd floor of Japan Village at 934 Third Avenue in Brooklyn. It's open Monday–Sunday from 11am to 7pm. Daiso is open Monday-Sunday from 11am to 9pm. Keep up to date with The Loft's events here.