Photo by Terra Dragos

Square Enix Cafe in Akihabara to Close in January 2020

Shocking Announcement by Square Enix

Square Enix has just announced that their cafe in Akihabara, Tokyo, will close on January 17, 2020.

Official Announcement by Square Enix

Thank you very much for your patronage.

This announcement may come as a surprise, but the current Square Enix Cafe in Akihabara, Tokyo, will close on Friday, January 17, 2020.

From the time the store opened on October 1, 2016, for a total of three years and three months, we were able to host 34 different collaborations and many customers from across the globe came to experience this unique Square Enix atmosphere.

Thank you very much.

As for the future, we are working on relocating to open a new store early next year. Once the final details have been sorted, we will inform you again via the official SQEX Cafe homepage, so please look forward to that news!

Although the days for the Akihabara shop are slowly counting down, not to mention the New Year holidays, we would be grateful if you enjoy the remaining time at the cafe. We hope to see you at the cafe!

(English translation by Terra Dragos)

History of the Square Enix Cafe in Tokyo

The video game developer and producer Square Enix, which has produced such beloved franchises like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, opened the Square Enix Character Goods Shop Show Case store to much fanfare in a somewhat hard-to-get-to location in Shinjuku, Tokyo. There wasn’t much to get excited about in the store besides having hands-on access to official SQEX merchandise; however, the main attraction at this location was the huge Sephiroth figure encased in apparent ice in the floor among other miniature figures and the like on display. This store was closed on November 25, 2012 in lieu of the new ARTNIA store/cafe & bar.

ARTNIA opened on December 22, 2012, right next to their main headquarters in East Shinjuku.

Photo by Terra Dragos

Unlike the previous store which was mainly used to showcase some awesome-looking figures and sell some merchandise, all of that--including the huge Sephiroth figure--moved over to the new ARTNIA location, combining it with a cafe-style restaurant which would convert to a bar later in the evening. The menu features series and character-specific designs such as Slime Pancakes (Dragon Quest) and Chocobo Cappuccinos (Final Fantasy).

Photo by Terra Dragos

First opening on October 1, 2016, the Square Enix Cafe Akihabara gave fans a new experience with their monthly collaboration that feature various video games produced by the company, not to mention hosting various official events and livestreams directly at the cafe.

Photo by Terra Dragos

Later on October 4, 2017, a similar cafe opened in Osaka that featured a much brighter white interior color scheme that drastically contrasts with the Akihabara store which is much darker.

So, What’s Next?

Much like it was stated in the official announcement by Square Enix, given that the original SQEX store closed and was replaced by ARTNIA within a month, I bet we’ll see something new opening up in Tokyo sometime late January to February.

The thing about the Akihabara location was that the store was extremely small. When you enter there is a wall to the right that features merchandise from the monthly title collaboration, and as you enter further into the store, there is a flight of stairs that leads to the cafe seating area and the main merchandise section, both of which are narrow and congested. When the store is busy, it’s quite difficult to move around. So that is why I think they will be opening up a new and improved larger cafe sometime early next year! SQEX is certainly starting off the new year on the right foot!

By - Terra Dragos.