Whether you’re always in a rush and need to just grab some joe and a muffin to go, or you like to sip your coffee slowly while enjoying the scene at your local coffee house, everyone’s got their go-to coffee place. But hopefully yours isn’t one of these, where just ordering the coffee requires some major skill.
Maid Cafes, Japan
Maid cafes became popular in Japan, catering to the anime-loving, typically male crowd. Now they”re becoming more popular with other crowds, too, including women. The waitstaff, composed of young women dressed in maids” uniforms, behaves as though they are catering to lords and ladies in private homes rather than in a public restaurant. They stir cream and sugar into coffee and even sometimes spoonfeed clients. If that sounds creepy to you, then you aren”t alone. You can also play cards and video games with the maids.
The Magic Restroom Cafe, Los Angeles, CA
If someone said to you “toilet-themed restaurant,” you”d probably dismiss it as something thought up by a bunch of gross middle-schoolers. But it was a real thing, serving up Asian-fusion food. Everything from the dishes to the seating looked like a potty. The food was named along the same theme; a vanilla-strawberry sundae, for example, would be called “blood number two.” How…appetizing. The cafe closed, however, earlier this year. People didn”t want to eat out of mini toilets? What a surprise.
The Grand View Cafe, Vassalboro, Maine
The waitstaff at this cafe in Maine were all topless. (The Grand View. DO YOU GET IT?) We hope the waitstaff had health insurance or at least some good burn cream because, as any servers out there know, the probability of spilling hot liquid on yourself is pretty high. Without the protection of a shirt: so much worse. The Grand View was forced to close in 2011. The town says it was because of a zoning issue, and not because of the numerous issues that could arise from topless waitstaff.
The Sweatshop, Paris
If you like to get buzzed on caffeine but hate not having anything to do, consider this place. It offers sewing machines so you can fidget and tweak your hopped-up little heart out and create some cool crafts at the same time.
Molecule, New York City
After reading about a toilet-themed cafe, we figured you might want something refreshing. Molecule in NYC”s East Village is a cafe that specializes in water. That”s right, the stuff you get out of the tap for free. The cafe strives to serve the cleanest, purest water possible, and also offers a variety of vitamins, minerals, plant extracts, and electrolytes, which is still just water.
The Twin Stars Diner, Moscow
This diner was inspired by the 1964 Soviet film The Kingdom of the Crooked Mirrors, where the protagonist encounters her twin. To that end, the place is staffed with nothing but sets of identical twins. As you might guess, the logistics of finding skilled twins was difficult, but the effort seems to have paid off.
Disaster Cafe, Lloret de Mar, Spain
Naming your business “Disaster” is risky enough, but this cafe doesn”t stop there. The cafe looks pretty normal on the outside, but inside, diners are seated in a cavern-like space, and the waitstaff wears hard hats. At some (or several) points during mealtime, the whole place will shake, simulating a 7.8-scale earthquake, complete with flickering lights and tumbling, screaming patrons. Wearing your best outfit is not advised, but they do take the precaution of using extra-heavy dishware to prevent breaks.
Soldatenkaffee, Bandung, Indonesia
I”m not sure what”s more tasteless: the toilet cafe or this Nazi-themed cafe. The cafe is full of Nazi propaganda posters and people dressed in period costumes. The owner insists that the theme is purely for the military aesthetic, but that seems…hard to believe.
Cat Cafes, several around the world
There are actually quite a few cat cafes. They started in Japan, and featured a standard cafe with the addition of a bunch of cats, who would hang out with patrons and enjoy some head scratches while the patrons enjoyed their coffee. They became popular because the limited housing space in Japanese cities means, more often than not, no pets. People can enjoy the company of an animal friend while still living in the city with these cafes.
Thanks Nature Cafe, Hongdae, Korea