- By Olivia Palermo -
One of the perks while traveling are any free moments I have to sneak off the main roads and into the local shops. Most recently, I discovered lots of hidden gems while recently visiting Tokyo..
While most people might want to stay in the Ginza district with its familiar shops like Chanel, Dior and even the Apple store (Japan’s first), I veered off into the Shibuya-ku area where mannequins at Aqua Girl drew me inside like the siren’s call. Designers like Celine and Rupert Sanderson were paired with local favorites including dresses from Kristina Ti and stoles from Giovi. It was fascinating to see how the Japanese pair items radically different than in the US to achieve a similar, yet completely personal aesthetic. I tried on a pair of scale-print shorts, a summer tweed dress and a beige color belt, which are now some of my favorite pieces in my wardrobe. Who doesn’t love saying in conversation – “Oh this? I got it in Japan.”
With my girlfriend in tow, we headed out and stopped by the Shibuya station with pop art filling its walls. The rails were impeccable and got us to the Imperial Palace in the historic Chiyoda district. Admiring the beautiful architecture, historic homes and stunning castles, the contrast between these ancient testaments to Japanese culture and to the high-rises and futuristic glass complexes we had just wandered through in Shibuya proved how much progress has occurred.
After witnessing a wedding in a traditional shrine in Ema, we wrote our wishes down leaving them at the shrine as an offering for the gods and spirits. Of course, I like to think that mine will come true on my next visit to Tokyo – and that the earrings I should have bought are still available.