experiencesuginami_nishi-ogikubo-walk-map_4

ANTIQUES & GALLERY WALK (Nishi-Ogikubo)

Amanda and Anita are Americans who met in Japan. Amanda has been working for a campus ministry in Tokyo since 2009 and lives in Suginami with her Japanese husband. Her friend Anita has been living here in Tokyo for 2 years as an English teacher at a Japanese high school. They love exploring the city together and discovering new places!

Nishi-Ogikubo is a rare, tight-knit community of antique lovers and artisans. This walking tour of some of our favorite shops on the north side of the station is a great starting point to finding your own hidden treasure in Nishi-Ogikubo! We recommend setting aside an afternoon for this walk as most of the shops don’t open until noon and you will surely want to take your time browsing through the antiques and art galleries along the way. This guide also features a great lunch location and ends at an adorable teashop where you can unwind and reflect on your adventure in Nishi-Ogikubo. Let’s get started!

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FALL GALLERY SHOP

After meeting up at the North exit of Nishi-Ogikubo station, we stopped by one of my favorite shops in the area – Fall Shop & Gallery. They have a lovely mix of antiques, stationery, tea, and goods made by Japanese craftsmen and artists. I often visit this shop to pick up unique stationery goods, like vintage stamps from the 1950's. The highlight of Fall is that the featured artist changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!

Address:
3 Chome-13-15 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
3 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-5856-0522 (Japanese only)
Open:
12:00pm - 8:00pm; Closed Mondays and Tuesdays
Website:
http://fall-gallery.com/
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese only.
  • no-smoking
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KIDOAIRAKU (ANTIQUES WATANABE)

At the bend in the road, we went into Kidoairaku Antiques. I have visited this small, but not-to-be-missed antique shop several times because of the beauty and rarity of the antiques they sell. The staff truly love Japanese history and antiques and are very knowledgeable about each item they have acquired, and the woman there was so kind she showed us many great things that we wouldn’t have known about otherwise. Anita and I enjoyed browsing through their collection of original and reproduction ukiyo-e prints—some of the originals are quite old! It is amazing how much time and detail is put into a single woodblock print, and they make an excellent gift or souvenir from Japan. Another popular souvenir item to check out at this shop are the soba choko, the cups used for the dipping sauce for cold soba noodles.

Price:
Reproduction prints around ¥3,000; Originals around ¥35,000
Address:
4 Chome-5-28 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
6 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-3301-2460 (Japanese only)
Open:
11:00am - 7:00pm; Closed on New Years holidays
Communication:
Most Staff speak only Japanese, but some can speak a little English.
  • no-smoking
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KAGAYAKI-TEI JAPANESE LUNCH

Just across the street, we had lunch at this local Japanese “teishoku” (set meal) restaurant. You can try real Japanese home style cooking at Kagayaki-Tei and the staff are so welcoming! Anita ordered the sashimi teishoku and I had the special of the day – fried salmon with shiso (beefsteak plant leaf). Teishoku meals are traditionally served with a main dish of meat or fish, a small vegetable side, Japanese pickles, rice, and miso soup. As a bonus, we also had delicious Japanese grapes for dessert!

Price:
Teishoku set meals usually ¥850
Address:
4 Chome-4-4 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
6 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-5305-5085 (Japanese only)
Open:
11:30am - 2:00pm
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese only.
  • no-smoking
  • no-credit-card
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KIMONO-KAN YOSHIYA

Our next destination was a few steps off the main road, but well worth the stop! Kimono-Kan Yoshiya is an antique and recycle kimono shop with 18 years of history and a great place for those interested in traditional Japanese kimono and fabrics. We tried on beautiful silk “haori”, which can be worn casually in or outdoors in fall and winter to keep warm. The shop also had large painted fans and decorative obi which are often used in home décor by foreign buyers. I was particularly impressed by the number of Okinawan textiles, called bingata, available. The owner told me that bingata was especially desirable in Tokyo because it is rare and very beautiful. We agree!

Price:
Used Kimono range from ¥3,000 to ¥30,000 or more
Address:
4 Chome-8-2 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
7 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-3395-4088 (Japanese only)
Open:
12:00pm - 7:00pm; Closed Tuesdays
Website:
http://kimonokan.co.jp/
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese only.
  • no-smoking
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ANTIQUES JIKOH

Back on the main street, we made our way to Antiques Jikoh. Antiques Jikoh is housed in three storefronts and is perhaps one of the largest Japanese antique shops in the area. It is a must if you are limited on time, but still want to find a great Japanese souvenir with some history. Anita and I were immediately drawn to the boxes of old wooden kokeshi dolls in front of one of the storefronts. After a little digging, we each found dolls to take home to remember our walk in Nishi-Ogikubo!

Price:
Wooden "kokeshi" dolls from ¥300
Address:
4 Chome-8-8 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
8 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-5382-5171 (Japanese only)
Open:
10:00am - 6:00pm; Closed on Wednesdays
Website:
http://antiquesjikoh.com/
Communication:
Owner speaks enough English to explain product details.
  • no-smoking
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SUKIWA GALLERY

After a refreshing walk along Zenpukuji River and a photo at the Totoro tree, we visited the gallery called Sukiwa. Sukiwa is a beautiful gallery which also specializes in Nihonga (Japanese painting) picture mounting and traditional textiles for Nihonga paintings. They were hosting an exhibition of Korean artist Eum Haeran’s work at the time. Their ever changing gallery space is peaceful and I always enjoy talking to the staff who are very passionate about their work and Nishi-Ogikubo’s art community. If you keep an eye on the website (or schedule something in advance), you may even be able to participate in one of their workshops during your own tour!

Address:
3 Chome-42-17 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
5 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-3390-1155 (Japanese only)
Open:
10:00am - 7:00pm; Closed during New Years holidays and summer O-bon holidays (please see website for details)
Website:
https://sukiwa.com/
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese and limited English.
  • no-smoking
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NISHIJIMA CROQUETTE

We could not resist the smell of the croquettes as we walked by Nishijima, a well-known and historic Nishi-Ogikubo meat shop and delicatessen. Their danshakuimo croquette has been featured on television, and at 90 yen a pop they are too good to pass up! Nishijima has been serving the community for 87 years and we were welcomed warmly by the staff who made us some of their famous croquette. It was so freshly made it was still steaming when we took our first bite!

Price:
Danshaku-imo croquette ¥90 (¥100 with sauce)
Address:
2 Chome-12-4 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
4 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-3390-2886 (Japanese only)
Open:
9:30am - 7:30pm; Closed Sundays and holidays
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese only.
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ISSHIN NIYO TEA HOUSE

Anita and I finished our Nishi-Ogikubo tour at Isshin Niyo Teahouse, a quaint teahouse only 3 minutes from Nishi-Ogikubo’s North exit. They have a wide selection of high quality teas, traditional Japanese sweets, and delicious homemade scones. Anita had iced Darjeeling tea served in a teacup she was allowed to select herself from the shop’s collection. At the staff’s recommendation, I tried an amazing oolong tea from the high mountains of China. It was a real treat to watch them make our teas because of the attention paid to the smallest details, like preparing the tea leaves used on our trays so we could take in the aroma of the tea before our first sip. If you would like to add the scone set, you can choose two homemade scones and pair them with one of ten jams. What a wonderful way to unwind after our Nishi-Ogikubo walk!

I hope you will come and enjoy treasure hunting in Nishi-Ogikubo soon!

Price:
Tea sets around ¥750 to ¥1,050
Address:
3 Chome-31-13-103 Nishiogikita, Suginami, Tokyo
Distance from Station:
4 minutes from JR Nishi-Ogikubo Station (North Exit)
Phone:
03-6913-8582 (Japanese only)
Open:
12:00pm - 8:00pm (Last order at 7:00pm); Closed Tuesdays
Website:
http://issin-niyo.forestarium.com/
Communication:
Staff speak Japanese only.
  • no-smoking
  • no-credit-card