The Ginza area of Tokyo is by far the ritziest of all of Japan’s districts. With stores such as Chanel, Cartier and Bulgari (not to mention an extremely overpriced bar staffed by former and current porn stars), you’re going to have to have a lot of yen in your pockets if you want to do more than window shop and people watch. Yes, there are exceptions and cheap eats to be found nestled amongst the luxury items, but overall, Ginza is dominated by fancy things. Just look at the elevators…

We start our elevator tour at the Chanel store in Ginza. Just looking at the outside, you know there’s gotta be something beautiful on the inside.

ginza chanelImage: kyo2046

Bypass all the expensive fragrances and handbags and go straight to the elevator. That’s where all the fancy is:

ginza chanel elevatorImage: Pirockichi

Now on to the Dior store. Such a tall building has got to have at least one elevator.

449px-Christian_Dior_Store_in_GinzaImage: Wikipedia

And here it is.

▼ What? Were you expecting anything less?

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 2.47.48 PMImage: motoharumiwa

Of course there’s an Apple Store in Ginza, and the elevator is just as sleek as the company’s popular gadgets.

ginza apple storeImage: Wikipedia

▼ The all-glass elevator of the Apple Store.

ginza apple elevatorImage: Milk Stand

Once you step in, you’ll notice something peculiar…

▼ Where are the buttons?

apple store elevatorImage: Sagamigawa

When visiting the Apple Store in Ginza, you have no choice but to visit every single floor as the automatic elevators are programmed to make every single possible stop as they ride up and down the four stories. A bit inconvenient, but a great way to make you check out everything the store has to offer.

And if it’s buttons you’re missing after visiting the Apple Store, waltz on over to the Shiseido Parlour, they’ve got plenty (and they’re arranged in an interesting way).

shiseido parlourImage: Kiyoshi Kawamoto

▼ But why the missing floors?

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 3.19.52 PMImage: dayjammanabu

The Swatch Group building in Ginza has the most unique elevators around. On the ground floor there are several glass galleries filled with specific brand items. For example, here’s one with Omega watches:

omega elevatorImage: Muramatsu

Looking just above the glass gallery to the floors above, you’ll see the Omega store:

omega storeImage: Muramatsu

But how are you going to get from the gallery to the store? Simple, that gallery you’re standing in, filled with actual Omega products, is actually the elevator. Press a button and you’ll be taken directly to the store:

ginza elevatorImage: Super Channel

There are several gallery/elevators around the building, all leading directly to the store whose name appears on the glass.

booth elevatorImage: Love the Life

Perhaps the most interesting elevator is the one for Swatch, which is filled with thousands of watches (Swatch brand watches, of course):

swatch elevator ginzaImage: aoichan_k

The Takashimaya department store, built in 1933, stands today as a throwback to the early days of retail shopping. The building is registered as an Important Cultural Property, the first department store to hold this designation.

TakashimayaImage: Wikipedia

Though technically in Nihonbashi, Takashimaya is right next door to the Ginza District and has such a cool elevator, we couldn’t help but add it to our list.

▼ The outside of the elevator is so sophisticated and old-timey.

nihonbashi takashimayaImage: Asabata

▼ Step inside and you’ll be greeted by an elevator operator, at your service to get you to the floor you desire.

takashimaya elevatorImage: peke001

One Twitter user was so impressed with the elevator operator, she just had to tweet about it:

▼ “Oh! There’s an elevator girl! Just what I’d expect at Nihonbashi Takashimaya”

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 3.43.54 PM

And this concludes our tour of the fancy elevators of Ginza. With designs like these, who needs to actually buy anything in the stores?

Source: Naver Matome
Featured image: Wikipedia