Archive for February, 2006

Parakiss Shop + Venus Fort

Yukari/George, Paradise Kiss

Right, as I promised, I would write about The Parakiss Shop, which is located inside Venus Fort. It’s been a few days since I visited the site so the detail is kind of sketchy. But basically you can just walk from Odaiba to Venus Fort and it’ll basically take you around 5 to 10 minutes. You won’t get lost because all you have to do is to look where the giant Ferris Wheel is located. Once you find that, you’ll pretty much find Venus Fort. Venus Fort is basically a shopping mall for those who are interested to purchase good brand name clothing at a good discounted price. Well, when I went there, most of the items were discounted so I got that impression. But then again it’s probably because it’s January/February, the time when big discounts usually are on offer by most shops.

I actually didn’t have any intention to come here. But while I was inside Fuji TV building, I saw a brochure advertising Paradise Kiss. Upon asking the shop attendant, I found out that Venus Fort is only within walking distance from the building, so I set out to find the place. It was a good decision too because I was looking for a long coat since I didn’t have any warm clothing on me besides a jumper and a thin jacket and the weather was cold. Oh right, Parakiss shop. The shop is located on the ground floor, IIRC. You have to get deep inside the shopping mall and you know that you’re close to it because you’ll see a tree decorated with blue lights. It’s not really a ‘shop’ but more like an open exhibition. The place basically showcases Yukari’s, George’s, and Miwako’s dress from Paradise Kiss series.

Ferris Wheel on the roof of Venus FortBlue treeYukari's gown
Yukari and George's costumeButterfly ringAll costumes

Yukari’s showcase dress looks okay in my opinion. I think I was a bit disappointed with it because IMO the dress would have been better if it was darker in colour. But then again, I’m not the bloody author/designer, so what do I know? George’s shirt looks good for exhibition piece but is too over the top for my taste so I don’t think I’ll touch it with a ten foot pole. There is also a Blue Rose that Yukari wears in the fashion show being sold for 8,925 Yen (around $90). Last but not least, the butterfly earring that George gave to Yukari retails for around 39,900 Yen ($400). For visitors who just want less extravagant items to purchase, there are Happy Berry statue, notebooks, clear plastic files, etc. I’m not really a Parakiss fan so I decided to save my money for more Honey and Clover items.

Anyway, sorry for the lousy photographs. Just like anywhere else in Japan (except outside temple areas), I’m not sure if I’m allowed to take photograph. But there was no forbidden sign so I was in a hurry to take as many photographs as possible before the store attendant flashes the ‘Batsu’ (X) sign. After taking those photos, I moved on since I did need to buy a coat. As I said before, Venus Fort itself is basically a place for anyone who intends on shopping for clothes. So it was kind of lucky that I managed to get one quite easily before moving on to take some more photograph. There is this rather nice Venus statue/water fountain in the middle of the shop. Almost every single tourist that stumbled upon the area was busy taking pictures so it was hard to take a good angle. It doesn’t help that I’m not a professional either to begin with.

Venus statueVenus statueVenus statue
Exhibition AreaVenus fort shopping mallFor pregnant women, the elderly, and alien

Eventually I’ve had enough of everything and decided to go back to my hostel especially since I already promised a friend to meet later on that night. On my way back, I decided to take the subway and realizes that the special seating area (where pregnant women, the disabled, and the elderly normally sit) is actually marked with a sign that looks like an Alien’s head. Okay, it’s actually a picture of a chair but for a second I thought it’s some kind of subliminal messages that it’s also special area for Gaijin. :P Anyway, I think I’ll talk about food on my next post since I realized that I have some eateries in Tokyo that I visited quite often. Maybe after that I’ll talk more about Akihabara and anime shops.