Japan 2013 Day 12: Robot Restaurant

by - 11/23/2013

I'm going to be completely honest: I cannot explain to you what Robot Restaurant is like. I think maybe the best way to describe it is an acid trip. There are so many lights and colors and sparkles, and so many surreal things going on around you. Cat girls in lingerie serve you drinks from a drink caddy that they drive around attached to a moped. Robots just roam around while you are drinking, baby dinosaurs interact with you on your table, all while you watch scantily clad women in Roman costumes ride horses across the desert. Do I sound like I am describing to you some crazy dream I had? Because this is all what happens at this place. 

Robot Restaurant is located in Shinjuku's Kabuki-cho district. This is, truly, a WTF Japan experience. There is no rhyme or reason to what goes on here. When I first saw this place on Anthony Bourdain's Part's Unknown, I knew I had to go there. As for the actual show, there are different stories told in different segments, and none of them seem to have anything to do with each other. This is, though, called a restaurant, but the food is not amazing. Let's just say I could get something better from the combini down the street. But the show itself is amazing. 

The space is very, very small. It's in the basement of the building, and it is narrow. You definitely do not want to be sitting in the front row, I'll tell you that. The tables are a two-seater, as in two chairs are linked to one table. All of the amazing stages and props are controlled by remote control, and the people in the back really are amazing at controlling these things. After each segment, the guy comes out with a cart to buy more alcohol. The scantily clad women hand out fun glowstick-like flash lights and encourage you to clap and wave them. I'm just going to leave you with some pictures so you get the idea. 

The bar

The bento was kind of cold. It had four onigiri, some cold sesame chicken, kamaboko, some pickles, a piece of tamago, and what appeared to be some sort of cold cuts. Again, eat after, or before the show. 

Yes, that is a dinosaur she is riding.
Yes, that is a giant spider she is riding.
They handed out some glow stick thingies to wave around.
Yes, that is a giant woman they are riding.

After the robots danced, people were allowed to go take pictures with them and the performers!

After the show, you could either leave, or stay in the lounge to drink a bit more. We stayed for a little while longer. 

This is how I felt after the show, too.
So yes, this is what the show was like. If you are still confused, just watch the video I made:

Tips for Robot Restaurant: 
  • We asked our concierge to make a reservation for us. Do this at least one day in advance, as this place is very popular and has limited seating. The concierge also wrote us directions to give to the taxi driver, in case you decide to take a taxi. 
  • If you are tall, do not sit in the front row. You WILL be smacked in the face with equipment. That is how close they get to you. 
  • If you are epileptic, do NOT go to this show. You will probably have a seizure just walking through the door. 
  • Do not come here to eat. The food is not that great. Eat something before, or afterwards. Instead, get a beer or some other cocktail and enjoy the show!

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