When marketing professionals talk of tastemakers, style influencers and early adopters of trends, the demographic they refer to is encapsulated by Hiroshi Fujiwara. Known as the “grandfather of Harajuku culture”, Fujiwara is a designer (he has created capsule collections for Nike and Levi’s, as well as having his own Visvin brand), musician (he has collaborated with Eric Clapton) and DJ. He even appeared in a cameo role in the movie, Los in Translation. And yet despite his undisputed cool, Fujiwara maintains a level of discretion and modesty that is rare in the creative industries (requests for this interview were at first rejected on these grounds).
Based in Tokyo, Fujiwara knows the Japanese capital from his Harajuku home to Roppongi hills and beyond. Here, here shares his vision of hip in Tokyo.
What do you love most about Tokyo?
The easy living and the fact that is a convenient city.
Which are you favourite design and architecture landmarks in Tokyo?
Harajuku as a town in itself: there are two sides, both busy and mellow.
Which are your favourite restaurants?
Kodama (Japanese), Hanmura An (for soba noodles), and Narisawa (French).
Ginza, Chuo, Tokyo
T. +81 3 5537 6116
7-14-18 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo
T. +81 3 5772 6657
2-6-15 Minami Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo
T. +81 3 5785 0799
What is your favourite Japanese dish?
Which are your favourite cafes?
Starbucks for its consistent style everywhere you go.
Which are your favourite bars?
I don't go to bars.
Where do you go to relax and rejuvenate?
I like to just stay at home.
What are your favourite museums and cultural attractions?
The Mori Museum in Roppongi Hills often has interesting events.
Roppongi Hills Mori Tower
6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Japan
T. +81 3 5777 8600
Which are your favourite private galleries?
Wako Galleries and Kaikai Kiki because I like the artists they represent.
3-18-2-101, Nishi-Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
T. +81 3 3373 2860
Motoazabu Crest Bldg, 2-3-20 Motoazabu, Mirato-ku, Tokyo
T. +81 03 6823 6039
Which are your favourite shops?
F.I.L. (Free International Laboratory) Visvim.
5-9-17-B1 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
+81 03 5725 9568
Which neighbourhoods should a visitor seek out?
The back streets of downtown, like Ueno or Asakusa, are very traditional and local.
Which are your favourite weekend getaways from the city?
Hakone, which is close enough to enjoy both nature and traditional Japan.
Which hotels do you recommend to visiting friends?
The Grand Hyatt.
6-10-3 Roppongi, Minato–Ku, Tokyo
T. +81 3 4333 1234
Please describe a perfect 24 hours in Tokyo.
Just enjoy yourself! It’s easy: I am proud of the hospitality here in Japan.
What is your definition of luxury?
Luxury is an atmosphere around you.