Wednesday, April 8, 2009

109 - Marukyu (One-Oh-Nine)

Want to know what the latest trend among stylish young girls in Japan is? Then visiting the "SHIBUYA109" building (Marukyu) will surely let you know!

Walk towards the Dogenzaka intersection from Shibuya station for about 5 minutes and you will see a tall cylindrical building standing tall in the center of a Y-shaped road. Built in 1979, the SHIBUYA 109 is a popular and symbolic shopping mall in Shibuya. SHIBUYA 109 used to be a building with kimono fabric stores and Japanese food - it sure was not the kind of place where young people go to like they do today. It was not until the year 1995 - when an underwear shop named Peach John opened - that SHIBUYA 109 gradually became popular among young people. 

Soon, more and more outfit shops targeting young girls opened in the building. Simple meals can be enjoyed at the top floors as well. Now, SHIBUYA 109 houses approximately 120 stores and is the place from which girls fashion culture is transmitted from to every corner of Japan.

There are several reasons told why this building is called 109. 1. Because the Tokyu Malls Development (TMD) owns the building. In Japanese, 10 is pronounced "To" (similar to "toe") and 9 is pronounced "Kyu". 2. Because the stores are open from 10AM to 9PM. 3. Because there are 109 shops.

Why don't you enjoy the fashion trends of young Japanese girls? Stores are open from 10AM to 9PM. And don't forget - 109s are located in Machida (Tokyo), Korinbo (Ishikawa Prefecture), and Shizuoka (Shizuoka Prefecture) as well!

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