More renowned for its prowess with wheeled vehicles, Toyota Motor Corp. is increasing its seaborne fleet with the launch of a new leisure boat, the Ponam-35.
But the 11.95-meter cruiser is still related to the car manufacturer’s mainstream products as its two V8-cylinder engines are adapted versions of the 4.5-liter V8 diesel engine that can be found in the Toyota Land Cruiser.
And while elsewhere it might be considered unusual for a car firm to dabble in pleasure boats, several of Japan’s other major auto firms also have boat divisions.
Italian brand Roberto Cavalli has announced that it will open its first Japan flagship store in September, with the designer behind the label to visit Tokyo to mark the opening of the boutique in early November.
The store is located in the city’s upmarket Aoyama district and will also be the first directly owned and managed Roberto Cavalli boutique in Asia.
“Tokyo is on the world’s stage of fashion, glamour and sophistication,” said Cavalli. “This is a city of energy and inspiration.
The pizza restaurant chain Domino’s has claimed that it intends to sell its pizzas by opening a store on the moon.
Domino’s Japan President, Scott K. Oelkers states this outer-space program needs an estimate of 1.6 trillion yen ($21 billion).
Around Y560bn will be need to carry 70 tonnes of construction materials and pizza-making equipment to the moon aboard 15 rockets.
Bottega Veneta have launched a special keyring for Japan and in particular to help the people struck by the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
Designed by Creative Director Tomas Maier, the keyring is made from a hand-woven intrecciato nappa leather and will be available in a run of only 1,000 pieces.
It will be on sale in Bottega Veneta boutiques and on bottegaveneta.com, at a retail price of $210 USD. All proceeds will be donated to the Japanese Red Cross.
Japan’s biggest clothes retailer continues to take the lead in relief efforts following the country’s earthquake and tsunami disaster, partnering with a star-studded cast of designers for a new t-shirt collection.
Uniqlo, whose CEO Tadashi Yanai already donated $12 million of his own money and a lot more in clothes, will release a range of ten new designs June 25.
Prints will consist of drawings and scripts, crafted by the likes of Lady Gaga, Karl Lagerfeld, Gwyneth Paltrow, Nicole Kidman, Lanvin’s Alber Elbaz, Blake Lively, Charlize Theron, Cyndi Lauper, Victoria Beckham, and Orlando Bloom.
While fashion brands have recently turned to China to stage prestigious events, Gucci will fete its 90 years at Kyoto’s Golden Temple, Women’s Wear Daily reports.
The Japanese city being the sister city of Gucci’s native Florence, the Italian brand deemed it an appropriate place to showcase a selection of rare and unique items from its archive.
“the fact that Gucci is pressing ahead illustrates just how much life in Japan is slowly resuming its normal rhythms after last month’s massive earthquake and tsunami.”
Gucci have created a limited edition bracelet to help support the relief efforts in earthquake and tsunami ravaged Japan.
Featuring a white-red-white web that recalls the colors of the Japanese flag, the bracelet carries a medal with a message that reads, “Gucci loves you.”
The bracelet will go on sale in Gucci stores throughout Japan tomorrow, followed by worldwide distribution in Gucci flagships stores in Europe, United States and Asia.
According to local and international media, Tokyo‘s fashion business is gradually getting back to usual.
After the earthquake hit Japan on March 11, many brands including Louis Vuitton, Prada, and Cartier acted to bring some of their executive staff back to their home countries and closed local boutiques.
News outlets including WWD and Racked now confirm that on March 22, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Dior, Chanel, and Forever 21 reopened their doors in the capital.
The Shangri-La Hotel in Tokyosaid Monday it would not accept any new bookings “until further notice”, citing the city’s uncertain power supply following Japan’s massive earthquake and tsunami.
The hotel said it hoped to resume normal operations as soon as possible but the decision highlighted problems the tourism industry will be forced to confront as Japan recovers from the deadly March 11 twin disasters.
“Following the natural disasters in Japan on 11 March 2011 and the resulting logistical difficulties and hazards, Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo will not be accepting any new guests until further notice,” the statement said.
Virgin Atlantic has become the first airline to lay on a complimentary helicopter transfer for its Upper Class passengers between Tokyo’s Narita International Airport and the center of the city.
Around 75 km to the east of Tokyo, Narita is infamous for its remoteness and poor links to the heart of the metropolis.
New bus and train links have reduced the time required to make the transfer to under an hour, but Virgin has realized there would be solid demand for a faster and more efficient method of beating the traffic.
According to a Women’s Wear Daily report, young Japanese shoppers are less impressed by designer brands and more value-driven than their parents.
The consulting firm McKinsey & Co. already reported last July that “almost 30 percent of shoppers under 30 in Japan named price as the most important factor they consider when shopping, compared to just 21 percent for those over age 50″.
As a result of its economic collapse, Japan’s per-head spending has radically declined — a trend that will continue — with the luxury market being particularly affected, having shrunk by 23 percent between 2006 and 2010.
Mercedes Benz on Wednesday unveiled a chocolate-themed version of its Smart car in Tokyo, just a couple of weeks before Valentine’s Day.
In Japan, there’s a tradition which says that women have to buy chocolate for men on this occasion.
Designed by designer Tadaaki Wakamutsu of Japanese luxury jeweler/chocolatier Q-Pot, the unique Smart city car features a special chocolate-themed paint scheme.
Swiss luxury watch maker Franck Muller has designed a special case for the iPhone, which is now available for pre-order in Japan for a whopping $1,270.
The cases will be sold as a limited edition, with Japanese iPhone provider SoftBank offering a total of 6 different models that will be produced 500 times each.
A monster bluefin tuna sold for a record 396,000 dollars in the year’s first auction at the world’s biggest fish market in Tokyo Wednesday amid intense pre-dawn bidding.
The 342-kilogramme (752-pound) fish — caught off Japan‘s northern island of Hokkaido — fetched a winning bid of 32.49 million yen (396,000 dollars).
It was the highest such bid yet, topping the previous record of 20.02 million yen paid for a bluefin tuna in 2001, the officials said.
Fans of Apple’s iPhone who just can’t get enough of the popular gadget can now travel to Japan to gobble up a tasty cookie modelled on the popular smartphone.
A small bakery in Japan has enjoyed a surprise hit with its “iPhone cookie”, a handmade chocolate biscuit decorated with colourful, edible application icons.
Green Gables in Tokushima prefecture pioneered the tasty treat in 2008 as a special birthday gift for a customer’s husband, said Kumiko Kudo, the owner of the store.
Japanese jewelry maker Ginza Tanaka has put on sale a 2011 calendar made of 6 kilograms of pure gold featuring popular Dutch rabbit character Miffy.
The calendar measuring 64 centimeters by 40 centimeters is on sale at eight outlets of the company as well as online.
The special solid gold Miffy calendar celebrates the â€œYear of the Rabbit 2011â€ and is on sale for a whopping 55 million yen ($655,000).
Tokyo is now the city with the most Michelin three-star rated restaurants in the world trumping Paris, once considered the gastronomic capital of the world.
The Tokyo metropolitan area, which unseated Paris from the No. 1 spot and this year, the number of three-star restaurants increased from 11 to 14.
The total number of restaurants rated in the Tokyo guide was 266 — with 54 two-star rated venues and 198 one-star rated venues.
For those who need more bling in their lives, Mercedes released these limited edition key fobs garnished with Swarovski crystals.
A limited edition of 800 of these luxurious keys will initially be offered to customers in Japan.
The idea for the Swarovski Mercedes keys came internally, amongst the employees of the companyâ€™s Business Innovation Community.
A hotel in the northern Japan city of Nagano has installed one of the largest scale model railway sets in the country in a special luxury suite.
The diorama measures 6 meters by nearly 2 meters wide and displays many of the prefecture’s most popular tourist spots, including Zenkoji Temple and Nagano’s famous mountains.
The Hotel Metropolitan’s model has four kinds of electric trains that guests can steer around the track, including a miniature version of the Asama “shinkansen,” the bullet train that runs between Nagano and Tokyo.
Michelin unveiled Tuesday its new guide to Japan’s western cities of Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe, with a novelty: a selection of 106 top restaurants that offer courses under 5,000 yen (60 dollars).
The guide, due to hit Japanese bookstores on October 22 in both Japanese and English, lavished the ancient capital of Kyoto with seven three-star ratings, all for Japanese cuisine, 22 two-star and 71 one-star ratings.
Kyoto is famed for the quiet sanctuary of its temples, shrines and Zen gardens, while the more boisterous, working-class Osaka has been nicknamed “Japan’s kitchen” and port city Kobe is famed for its premium beef brand.