It’s always fun when さくら sakura (cherry blossom) season begins and the beautiful pink flowers have an explosion, effectively turning Tokyo pink. Not only are they stunning to look at but there’s an entire tradition behind it here in Japan called hanami.
With hanami, people admire the blossoms by picnicking under the blooming trees or by having photo shoots at prominent locations lined with the pink blossoms such as this wedding picture that I snapped while heading out from Roppongi’s Midtown.
And, it’s not only humans that get the star treatment by posing for pictures in front of sakura but also these chihuahuas in fancy dress. かわいい!
Another interesting tidbit about cherry blossom season is that everything suddenly becomes available in sakura flavor – but only for the cherry blossom season. Macaroons, frappuccinos, cakes, biscuits, even ice cream are just a few examples out of the diverse range of choices.
A collection from Museo Poldi Pezzoli is currently on display at the Bunkamura Museum in Shibuya, Tokyo showing the stunning exhibition The Aristocratic Palace and its Beauty -Milano, the Magnificent Collection of the Nobleman. Gilt gold frames enclose dramatic portrait masterpieces and those with religious iconography, intricate tapestry, and further ornate objects help give insight into the lavish taste of prominent Milanese nobleman Gian Giacomo Poldi Pezzoli.
The idea of bringing a few pieces home with me was tempting especially in order to compliment my own collection, but alas I had to make do with some beautiful postcards and Italian snacks (Sacucci Horocci with flavors of milk, strawberry and tiramisu) from the exhibition gift shop.
The Soul of the World “Anima mundi”, by Anne and Patrick Poirier, Cone in metal, diameter: 600cm / height 700cm, a “living sculpture with living birds”.
Luxury fashion brand Louis Vuitton’s art space which occupies the 7th floor of their vast Tokyo Omotesando boutique never seizes to amaze me with their interesting exhibition program and their Traces of Disappearance exhibition is no different. With a live bird sculpture and a gummy bear mosaic that mimics traditional stained glass windows, can you really blame me?
Mont Ventoux, by Naoya Hatakeyama 畠山 直哉, 2005/2013, Consisting of a series of 12 C-Print images, 100 x 49 cm, framing structure 63 x 114 cm.
(Mosaic) The Sheer Size of It, by Kasper Kovitz, Candy on Plexi-glass, diameter: 710cm.
Feasting on Michelin starred cuisine on the skyline of Ginza- one of the world’s most luxurious shopping districts, is the best pick-me-up after an intensive shopping spree. Alain Ducasse’s restaurant Beige, in collaboration with fashion brand Chanel boasts two Michelin stars and offers a sumptuous setting with excellent service and delicious food that indulges both sight and taste senses.
Beige tweed upholstery in line with classic Chanel suits is used on the dining chairs and the large glass windows feature a square quilting diamond pattern similar to that of the Chanel 2.55 handbag.
I chose a delicate green lentil soup followed by roast chicken from Bresse as appetizer.
This was then followed by a main course of seared Kinmedai, two ways fennel, lemon jus.
Small sweets included summery lemon and sakura (cherry blossom) macaroons with chocolate Chanel buttons.
As for dessert, I simply had to try the lavish and indulgent chocolate-praline Chanel square sprinkled with gold leaf and served with hazelnut gelato. Délicieux!
The restaurant also offers a fabulous view of the luxury lined streets of Ginza with the Bvlgari, Tiffany & Co. and Cartier buildings in the near distance.