November 13, 2015
Something that I’m looking forward to in 2016 is the opening of a cat cafe in Philadelphia (if you’re interested, look up Kawaii Kitty Cafe). I feel like cat cafes were first made popular in Japan, which is where things cool and weird and unique come from. (In addition to cat cafes, there are also rabbit cafes and owl cafes in Japan now. Not to be outdone, South Korea opened dog cafes and a sheep cafe.)
I had been to a cat cafe in Shanghai and was ecstatic to find out that Hong Kong has cat cafes, too. I feel that cafes such as these are growing to be more and more popular in Eastern Asia due to the growing population and lack of living space. Many times, apartment building owners will not allow their tenants to own a pet — or, someone with a busy schedule may not have the time to take care of a pet even though they love animals. That’s where cafes like this come in. Places like cat cafes give their customers the pleasure of being able to play with an animal without having to actually take care of the animal and deal with the expenses of owning one.
Cat cafes are popular due to the fact that people want to play with cats, so their food and drinks are a bit overpriced. My friends and I went to Meow Mi Home in Mongkok, where they required that patrons spend at least $50 HKD each visit. That may seem like a lot, but each drink is about $30 HKD, so you may only have to order two drinks or a drink and a snack and you’ll be all set. Meow Mi Cafe was located in the shadiest building in the shadiest alleyway. The elevator seemed like it could break at any moment. But the doors opened when we were on the 10th floor, and right away we were greeted by two cats in the foyer.
The cafe owners required us to take off our shoes upon entering (I suggest taking off socks, too, because cat fur). Once we were seated (cats were actually everywhere), we were given a menu, which had a variety of dishes, from appetizers to main dishes and desserts and fancy drinks. It actually took a while to order because my friends were distracted by all the cats, and also some cats walked around and sat on our menus. Hahaha.
My friends and I eventually ordered French fries and chicken wings, which weren’t bad but in very small portions. The hot coffee I ordered had foam, and on top of the foam was a cat face drawn in chocolate syrup. Other drinks available included smoothies and sodas. A friendly warning to future cat cafe-goers — once you get your food and drink, you have to keep an eye on them so that the cats won’t be able to sneak a bite or sip or something.
There were lots of games available that we could play (though I wouldn’t recommend it. Knowing how cats are, they could walk across your game board and ruin your game without hesitation) and also cat toys that you could use to play with the cats. My friend was lucky enough to have a cat plop right in her lap (it was attracted to the smell of her jacket) when she sat down. You can definitely waste a few hours here, eating, chatting, and playing games with your friends (and of course, lovingly petting the cats). I definitely am planning to go back before I leave Hong Kong. #nopetproblems