Japan - Tokyo smoking cafes, people with children, those under 20 NOT allowed..

July 7, 2009 - Salaried workers feeling cornered by the ever-expanding ban on smoking in Tokyo can rest easy at a recently opened cafe in the Shinbashi district that caters exclusively to smokers. At Cafe Tobacco, smoking is allowed on all three floors, according to its operator, Towa Food Service Co.

The cafe, with 44 places, opened near JR Shinbashi Station in April. Towa Food Service has also opened a second Tobacco Cafe in the nearby Yurakucho business district.

The smoke, meanwhile, is not visible inside the building as smoke neutralizers are installed on each floor. "Smokers also hate smoke from other smokers," said a Towa Food Service official. The cafe also offers original blend coffee with a bitter taste, which is believed to go well with cigarettes.

A sign posted at the entrance advises people with children and those under 20 to refrain from using the cafe.

Reference: Tobacco Cafe an oasis for smokers, Kyodo News, The Japan Times Online, 7/4/2009.

Some related news briefs - Japan: Japan - Kanagawa - bans smoking in public places starting April 2010..; Japan shelves tobacco tax hike for 2009.., Japan - Ruling party plans tobacco tax hike in 2009..; Japan Tobacco Starts Petition To Fight Tax Increase..; How to get most smokers to quit?? - Keep On Raising The Price..; Japanese lawmakers want to triple cigarette prices..; Japanese tobacco giants focus on point-of-sales cigarette purchases..; Japan - photos can be used to fool the age-verification cameras on some vending machines..; Vending Machines - Japanese protecting their children from becoming life-long nicotine addicts...

Click on image to enlarge, opened in April in Tokyo's Shinbashi district. KYODO PHOTO..