If you haven’t been to a cat café yet, it’s time to go see what it’s all about. This is a magical place where coffee and cats come together under one roof, where you can lounge on the floor with your favorite feline without ever letting go of your latte.
And here’s the good news: the phenomenon of the cat café is spreading.
Cat Cafes Offer An Oasis Of Relaxation and Furry Felines To Go With Your Coffee
The cat cafe spread started in Taiwan in 1998, at a café called Cat Flower Garden. This small café was filled with friendly feline critters. Locals loved it, and word soon got out of the cat filled coffee house. After that it was Japan who led the cats and latte’s movement. Japan currently holds the record for most cat cafés, with more than 150 and rising.
Courtesy of Shutterstock
The reason for this surge in popularity is fairly simple. Densely populated cities like Tokyo, Seoul, and Hong Kong come with sky-high property costs, forcing many to rent. Most landlords enforce a strict no-pets policy, leaving stressed out urbanites without the furry companionship they need.
North America, with more relaxed rules about keeping pets in rental spaces, has been slow to join, but a recent rise in cat cafes suggests they finally got the memo: cats and coffee are a winning combination.
Here are some of the world’s most popular cat cafés, featuring adorable kittens and cat themed menus. They’re so cute, you might need to include some of these cafes when you plan your next trip.
London’s Purring Cat Cafe
Enjoy your tea in traditional English fashion. Plus a few furry animals, of course.
London was one of the first to jump on board with their own cat café. Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium in East London is home to nine purring pouncers, and is known as a “calm refuge in the midst of a busy city.” You can enjoy cats and a cuppa at either of their two 90-minute bookings, one for afternoon tea and one for the oh-so English high tea. A £6.50 cover charge helps take care of the furry guests of honor.
Don’t forget to call ahead; both floors of this comfy café fill up quickly.
Budapest’s Beautiful Cat Cafe
Cat Café Budapest is modeled after traditional cafés, with standard seating and menu fare, along with cat themed titles and the adorable addition of some feline staff.
Order a “cat-puccino,” which comes with cat paw print art in the foam, or snack on some macaroons decorated with kitty faces. This café is also known for its chilled-out kittens, who spend their time lounging about and posing for pictures.
Courtesy of fabulousfabs via Flickr
California’s Chill Cat Cafe
Cat Town Café in Oakland, California was America’s first real cat café. This non-profit kitty corner puts a priority on helping their residents—err, cats—find new homes.
Cat Town is all about community, gathering all their felines from local shelters, serving local coffee, and finding local homes for their cats. Traveling from overseas? If you leave a good impression, they’d probably make an exception.
Courtesy of littlelixie via Flickr
New York’s Trendy Cat Cafe
Located in the trendy Lower East Side, Meow Parlour is exactly what it sounds like. Upwards of 10 cats at a time reside at this Manhattan café, all of whom are up for adoption if you should happen to fall in love.
If you’re short on time, you’re welcome to relax for as long as you can, eat a cat themed snack, and be on your way. $5 will give you thirty minutes of cat cuddles, and if yoga’s your thing, you might enjoy their 1.5-hour Yoga & Kitties class.
Courtesy of Nuno Cardoso via Flickr
Montreal’s Heart-Melting Cat Cafe
This French-speaking Canadian city got savvy to the cat café wave a long time ago. Chat L’Heureux opened their doors in 2013, after the owner traveled to Japan and South Korea and realized something was missing back home.
He started a crowdfunding project and found overwhelming support for his dream, along with a mutual love of cats and coffee, raising over $40,000. Now the Chat L’Heureux even employs a cat behaviorist to make sure the cats are happy and adjusting well to their homes. You can find their full menu on their homepage.
Toronto’s Comfy Cat Cafe
Bi-laws in Toronto state you can’t have cats in the same room that you’re serving food. It’s a buzzkill, but that hasn’t stopped a Saskatchewan duo from flying all the way to Toronto to start their own café.
Tot the Cat Cafe is up and running as one of Toronto’s only cat cafés, but there’s a catch – you have to enter the special “cat room” after you finish your drink. Until Toronto finally accepts the future that is coffee and cats, Torontonians will have to enjoy their cats and coffee separately.
Osaka’s Awesome Cat Cafe
While Tokyo boasts the most cat cafes per capita, Neko No Jikan in Osaka claims to be the first. At Japan’s original cat cafe, you can sip Japanese tea in a traditional setting, complete with tatami floor mats and well waxed sliding doors.
The straw floor mats and cushions also create an ambiance that is uniquely Japanese. Neko No Jikan isn’t the cheapest in the world of cat-meets-coffee, but what can you expect from Japan’s first cat cafe?
Courtesy of Sarah Marchildon via Flickr
Singapore’s Spectacular Cat Cafe
This is one café where you won’t be rushed. With their lounge-like atmosphere, Cat Café Neko No Niwa encourages you to get comfortable. Visitors are required to stay at least an hour, so they can get acquainted with the cats and truly soak in the peaceful experience.
Immerse yourself in this calm oasis of leisurely cat life, and walk away purr-fectly refreshed.
Now you’re an expert when it comes to the world’s best cat cafés. The list is growing by the day, but who’s surprised? Cat cafes are a relaxing retreat from hectic city life.
Have you got a cat café in your city? If not, it’s probably just a matter of time before it catches on there too.