As you walk through the concrete jungle that is Seoul, South Korea, you turn your head away from the large building that is Hongik University and are struck by the large mast and figurehead of The Thousand Sunny, which practically appears as if by magic in this concrete jungle. It does not stick out at first, but if you’re looking, it is easy to spot this large ship that emerges out of nowhere.
This is Cafe de One Piece, a permanent fixture in Seoul’s Hongdae district, a district where the college students mill about and where locals come for the urban nightlife. Have you seen a pop-up cafe in Japan? Well, this is a step above that and is more than comparable to the Gundam Cafe in Odaiba, Tokyo, which, until recently, featured a life-sized Gundam. If you have been to any of those, well, let us show you what the Cafe de One Piece is all about!
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When you first arrive, or prior to leaving, you can take pictures with your favorite characters in waiters and waitress uniforms. Then, enter in from the left door and you will find the menu and counter where you are expected to order a minimum of three items before you may go upstairs. And while the products may be expensive, that doesn’t mean you have to spend an arm and a leg to go upstairs. Of course, if you bothered to wait as long as you did to come into Cafe de One Piece, there is no doubt that you will want to go upstairs!And for tourists who have trouble with Korean, don’t worry because a few of the staff actually speak English!
Looking at the menu, there a number of fun items from devil fruit shaped macaroons (W3,000) to devil fruit shaped cakes (W40,000)! There are themed drinks and meals as well. Menu items are generally in the low thousands, but remember, you need to order three items! A cheap option would be to order three macaroons and then you can go upstairs and find a seat with your buzzer in hand.
There is outdoor seating on the deck of The Thousand Sunny where you can take pictures of the mast and view. It’s a fun experience, especially for diners who enjoy a smoke. or some “fresh” air. Inside, there are a few small tables and a communal table for diners. There are a few display cases with One Piece figurines to look at as well.
Once you’ve enjoyed the sitting area for as long as you need, all you have to do is go back downstairs. Of course, that means going through the store! At the store are various One Piece memorabilia for any collector. There are One Piece figures, knick-knacks and all sorts of things that anyone could ever want. Don’t forget to pick up something to take home!
At the time of our visit to this great themed cafe, the wait was non-existent, but it has been reported that the wait can take ages. So if you are coming in the early spring or winter, bring your coats! And don’t forget your cameras for a memorable experience!
A good thing to note is credit cards are accepted here so you don’t have to keep a large wad of won in your pocket to ensure you can get as many treats as your little heart desires. Seating is also limited so even if you manage to get in, you still have to find seating, but that’s a small inconvenience compared to all the fun you’re sure to have.
Many people think that Japan is the only place to go if you’re an anime fanatic, but with a bit of luck and research, you can travel the world and find plenty of places to see. The world can be connected so easily through the love of anime. Are there any otaku out there who are keen on checking out the Cafe de One Piece? Have you already been there? What do you guys think about it?