Imaizumi

Jan. 17, 2012, 8:15 No Comments

It goes without saying that you can pick up a wide variety of designer goods in Tenjin, Kyushu’s leading shopping district. However, if you’re after something a little more unique, try taking a short stroll south to the Imaizumi area. In the past, the area was known as a residential district, but in the latter half of the 1990s, numerous small, chic boutiques began sprouting up, attracting young shoppers.

That trend has continued and, today, Imaizumi boasts an impressive array of independent clothing stores. If you’re looking for fashionable items exclusive to Imaizumi, try DICE & DICE, naif and CURVE, which have long been a popular place for fashion-conscious locals to pick up distinctive threads and accessories. For a break, pull up a seat at Cafe de H’s outdoor patio and take a peak inside the adjoining gallery.

Feel like a new haircut to complete your new look? Head on over to the REVOLUCIA hair salon, which is open 24 hours a day and located next to Imaizumi Park. The award-winning Toki Rikyu complex is home to a number of stores, including a made-to-order furniture store and a gourmet steak house. With magnolias and sal trees growing in the grounds, the complex is a green oasis in the heart of the city.

Shounin-bashi-dori (Priest Bridge Road) is the street that separates Imaizumi and Kego. Its name comes from the Edo Period, when a feudal lord is said to have built a bridge in order to play go with a priest on the other side. Even now, the Choenji and Koshoji temples can be seen alongside the clothes stores, izakaya and yakiniku restaurants – as can the long-standing and much-loved tempura restaurant Sakau, which hasn’t changed much since it was established in 1930.

It is this mix of the old and the new, the Japanese and the Western, that is perhaps Imaizumi’s greatest charm. With bars, nightclubs, recording studios, public baths, temples, graveyards and state-of-the-art love hotels all sharing the same space, a stroll through its streets is sure to lead to an interesting discovery.

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The Party

A stylish restaurant, bar and club, spread across two floors. In good weather, their rooftop patio offers nice views and fresh air.
Tel: 092-714-7140

Dice & Dice

One of Fukuoka’s most established boutiques sells specially-ordered brand goods and other exclusive items. They also hold in-store events.
Tel: 092-722-4877

Sonomitsu


This shoe shop sells a wide range of shoes, sandals and boots hand-made by a shoemaker in Tokyo.
Tel: 092-716-5685

Vinyl Cafe


A dining café with a great and varied selection of vinyl LPs and CDs spun by the in-house DJ.
Tel: 092-716-2777

Honshoyu


This sento (public bath house) has been around for 50 years. They have scented baths that change monthly, with iris in May, followed by rose in June.
Tel: 092-741-0709

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MORE IMAIZUMI!

CURVE
Wide range of fashion items for both sexes.
Tel: 092-732-7439
naif
Imported items for men mainly.
Tel: 092-732-7439

Gouache

Wide varieties of items from clothes to daily goods.
Tel: 092-791-7555

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RESTAURANTS

Cafe de H
Cafe with outdoor terrace and an adjacent art gallery.
Tel: 092-732-3167

Hakata Robata Fishman
Fresh fish dishes served in a stylish, yet not overdone, izakaya setting.
Tel: 092-7171-3571

Tempura Sakau
Serving delicious and affordable tempura since 1930. The retro interior takes you back to a previous era .
Tel: 092-751-2207

Tenjin Wappa Teishokudo
Reasonably priced set meals (teishoku) and rice bowls (donburi).
Tel: 092-771-8822

Nile Imaizumi
A shop accredited with revolutionizing curry rice meals back in 1961.
Tel: 092-285-6231

Taigen Imaizumi
A yakiniku restaurants serving only selected Kagoshima Kuroge Japanese Beef (wagyu).
Tel: 092-738-6529

Ishokusakaba Dainoji
Various izakaya dishes in addition to charcoal-grilled seafoods.
Tel: 092-716-3088

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OTHERS

Revolucia Imaizumi
A 24-hour hair salon. Coupons are available online.
Tel: 092-762-1133

Toki Rikyu

This low-rise small group of shops won a Good Design Award.

Tsutaya Tenjin
Books, magazines, and rental DVD store along with a Starbucks inside.
Tel: 092-738-7200

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Fukuoka is famous for the street stalls, known as yatai, that line its streets at night. In Imaizumi, we spotted a “hotel” for these yatai. The ground floor parking lot of the building behind Dice & Dice is home during the day to seven compactly folded yatai, presumably some of the same ones that are often seen at night around Tenjin or on Watanebe-dori. It’s almost as if they’re resting before their nightly excursions. In Fukuoka, there are workers called hakobi-ya (carriers), whose sole responsibility is to transport yatai. No doubt those seven yatai are also waiting for a hakobi-ya to take them out for a night on the town.

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IMAIZUMI MAP

View Fukuoka Now – Around Town “Imaizumi” in a larger map

Originally published in Fukuoka Now magazine (fn149, May. 2011)

 

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