Starbucks opens its largest Reserve Roastery and store in the trendy neighbourhood of Nakameguro, situated in Tokyo.
With four storeys, it overtakes the Shanghai's Reserve Roastery in size at 32,000 sq ft. It features the coffee chain’s largest Teavana tea bar and its first dedicated community space for events featuring thought leaders.
It promises an upmarket experience with a menu of premium coffees, teas and cocktails, is designed by renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who is also behind Tokyo's new National Stadium that will take centre stage when the city hosts the Olympic Games next year (2020).
"The Roastery signifies our commitment to fostering moments of human connection over a cup of coffee and using these moments to create positive social impact in the communities we serve," said Mr Takafumi Minaguchi, chief executive officer of Starbucks Japan.
Located next to the famous Meguro River that is lined with sakura cherry blossom trees, the store showcases the skills of home-grown craftsmen - including an origami-inspired wooden-tiled ceiling - through materials such as light-tone wood from sustainable Japanese forests.
Japan was where the Seattle-based coffee chain opened its first store outside North America, in the tony district of Ginza in August 1996. Today, there are 1,400 stores across all 47 prefectures in the country, hiring more than 37,000 employees. The other roasteries are in Milan, New York, Seattle and Shanghai.
The Reserve Roastery is the home to Starbucks' first cocktail bar in Japan, featuring drinks such as the Nakameguro Espresso Martini that is mixed with chestnut liqueur, creme de cacao and espresso.