I wanted to point out this post that I found on the UrbanResearch blog about the Costco in Yokohama, Japan. There are lots of pictures of the interior of the Costco and it pretty much looks like any Costco here in the United States. I guess that Costco feels like they’ve perfected the layout and general qualities of the store, so why mess with a good thing? Now, granted, in one of the pictures there’s an escalator to another floor which you more than likely don’t have at your local Costco unless it’s in a major metro area perhaps. However, most of the store looks shockingly familiar: from the big display of Nintendo DS games to the couches that people are trying out.
Perhaps the thing that is most familiar to anyone that goes to Costco: the food court. It’s still there and, though it may seem hard to believe, they’re selling the same things! Pizza and hot dogs are a big seller, even in Japan, apparently. I wonder what else they have in their food court. Think they have the churros and chicken bake too? The one thing that is completely different, is the Kirkland water bottle vending machine. It’s a pretty cool idea. Of course, I noticed that in one of the pictures you can see the big cases of bottled water are still available too.
I am a little amazed that there is a big market for bulk shopping in Japan because I’ve always heard that they have real space constraints in their homes. So, where are they storing their big bag of tortilla chips and case of water? And how are they getting their new couch home? In any case, you should check out the pictures because it’s just kind of fun to see the similarities of Costco in Japan.