When we think of anime stores or any other Otaku activities within Tokyo, Akihabara is the first place that comes to mind. However, this isn’t the only place where Otaku’s gather in the city. Ikebukuro area, specifically the east Ikebukuro Station, is also a trendy spot for anime fans and avid gamers.
The largest chain of Japanese specialty stores for anime, Animate began its journey in Ikebukuro when it opened its first branch in 1983. The 40th anniversary of Animate’s establishment is now around the corner, and the chain has plans to do something special to commemorate the occasion.
Animate plans to celebrate its 40 years of existence where it all started; at Ikebukuro. They will be hosting an opening ceremony for what it claims is one of the biggest shops for anime in the world.
Animate’s current Ikebukuro branch has a nine-floor facility 5 minutes walking distance from the train station. However, with otaku culture becoming more well-known than ever and it’s just not large enough.
It just happens that there’s an Ikebukuro Public Health Center that was once adjacent, which has moved to a different location, leaving the area empty. Therefore, Animate has decided to grab the vacant space and build an expansion of a considerable size connected to Animate Ikebukuro’s present association.
The brand new facility will be called Animate Ikebukuro Flagship Store, which is scheduled to open in the spring of 2023.
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