Starbucks in Japan

STARBUCKS in Japan Deeper

Do you like Starbucks? I like it because I like coffee! There are many Japanese coffee chains, but Starbucks is a little special to me.

Starbucks, a global chain, first arrived in Japan in 1996. The first Japanese store was opened in Ginza, which was the first outside of North America. Today, there are over 1,800 stores in Japan. Starbucks has developed many stores in Japan that take advantage of its ties to the local community, and in fact, just visiting a Starbucks can be a sightseeing trip in itself. I also go out of my way to stop at Starbucks when I travel.

In this article, I will introduce some of the unique Starbucks and recommended stores in Japan!

Is there the world’s best Starbucks in Japan?

The TSUTAYA SHIBUYA store right in front of Shibuya Crossing is closed as of February 2024, but boasts the world’s highest sales per store. You can get a good view of Shibuya Crossing from the seating area on the second floor of the store. I look forward to seeing what the store will look like when it reopens. I will let you know when we know it will reopen.


One of only six special stores in the world is located in Nakameguro, Tokyo. This is the fifth Starbucks Reserve Roastery in the world, opening in 2019. The modern design incorporates the elegance of craftsmanship while featuring the natural beauty of Japan. You will be able to taste food and drinks unique to this location.

nakameguro store

Located right by the Meguro River, famous for its cherry blossoms. It gets very crowded on weekends and other occasions, so numbered tickets are sometimes given out.

Regional Landmark Stores

Starbucks Regional Landmark Stores are stores that are architecturally designed in iconic locations throughout Japan to promote local culture to the world. They are built to fit in with their location, for example, by taking advantage of historic buildings. It is worth visiting because it offers a slightly different atmosphere from other stores.

My Favorite Regional Landmark Store

Hirosaki Park Store

hirosaki store

Built in 1917 as the official residence of an army division commander, this wooden building features a unique blend of Japanese and Western design. Located right in front of Hirosaki Park, famous for its cherry blossoms and castle, it is the perfect place to stop by during a sightseeing tour.

Kawagoe Kanetsuki Dori Store

The “Toki no Kane” (bell of time) tells time in Koedo Kawagoe. Located not far from there, this store is designed to blend in with the cityscape. The store features a garden inside, and there is also terrace seating where you can relax and enjoy a cup of coffee.

For more information about Kawagoe, see this article.

Toyama Kansui Park Store

Located in the Toyama Canal Kannsui Park, this Starbucks has been called “the most beautiful Starbucks in the world” after winning the Store Design Award in 2008. The building has a simple design that blends in with the landscape, with large windows from which you can enjoy the view of the park’s symbolic “Tenmon Bridge” and the scenery. It is a store where you can spend a relaxing time together with the park.

toyama store

Kobe Kitano Ijinkan Store

Kitano Ijinkan is a two-story wooden house built in 1907 during the Meiji Era and originally owned by an American; it was damaged by the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995, but was rebuilt by Kobe City and the private sector. The neighborhood is lined with historical Western-style houses built by foreign merchants and diplomats, so be sure to stop by during your stroll.

Book & Cafe

Many Starbucks stores are attached to bookstores, and some are even located inside city libraries. At such stores, you can savor a cup of coffee while reading a book. I recommend Tagajo City Library in Miyagi Prefecture. It is a library, bookstore, and Starbucks all in one, and is a place where local residents can relax and tourists can stop by.


A wide variety of tea beverages from the TEAVANA tea brand, which selects the finest tea leaves and botanical ingredients, can be enjoyed. As of 2024, there are about 10 STARBUCKS Tea & Café stores in Japan.

Starbucks Reserve

Unique, high-quality, and only available in small quantities, coffee beans are offered as “Starbucks Reserve” in a limited number of stores around the world. The beans are ground per order and each cup is brewed with carefully selected equipment, and the beans are also available for sale. There are many stores designated as Starbucks Reserve, so use the store locator.

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Have you found your favorite Starbucks store? Enjoy your coffee!