Founded in 1979, MUJI, is a Japanese retail company that produces and sells a wide array of consumer and household goods. I first came across it in 2006 in London, but since then I have set foot in many MUJI stores. i just lover their philosophy of design minimalism and emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.
MUJI has become a global name, with over 250 stores in 24 countries outside of Japan – there is even a shop in my hometown in Germany. Within Japan alone, MUJI operates nearly 300 outlets, and its flagship store is in Yurakucho, Tokyo.
Initially I had no plans to go there, but it was close to where we were staying in Tokyo Ginza, and I had read that this is a great place to visit with kids. So I was intrigued – one afternoon we entered the 3,500 square meters of floor space, largest MUJI store. Behind the simple and unassuming store front lies 3-stories of pure shopping heaven – stocking every single MUJI product available on the market.
We spent quite some time in the children’s section on the second floor. The clothes are very cute – and there is a very big selection, including items for newborn. In the centre of the section is a small play area, where kids can try out the Muji toys or read one of the books.
MUJI sells all sorts of household furnishings, and there is even a section dedicated to gardening and potted plants.
MUJI Yurakucho is also one of a dozen MUJI stores to feature a Café and Meal MUJI. The cafeteria-styled diner serves serves both lunch and dinner, and has an affixed bakery where one can purchase all sorts of bread. It’s the only place I found a pretzel on sale, so we bought one for Lina who is addicted to the savoury bread.
What I really like about this MUJI is the range of special products and services… there is a whole section on Open Muji, which is a partnership with different designers and old-school product makers (they often make products still by hand and in small/limited batches).
If you want, you can also get your clothes and bags embroidered at MUJI – I would have loved to do this, but we didn’t have enough time. It said you need about an hour to get this done, and we were already pressed for time, by the time we managed to explore all three MUJI floors!
On the third floor was also a section where you can design your own house/flat – with paint colours to go on your walls and tiles for your floors. Impressive, you could really live in a MUJI house, with products from this one shop. And if you cannot be bothered to design your own house, you can easily just purchase the finished Muji house off the shelf…
The MUJI Yurakucho flagship store is located at exit D9 of the Yurakucho Station. The station serves the JR Yamanote Line and the JR Keihin Tohoku Line, as well as the Metro Yurakucho Line.