The trend of Animal Cafés arose in 1998 in Taiwan when the first Neko Cafè was born , where neko means precisely cat. Since then the trend has spread until it reached Italy in 2014, where MiaGola Café was inaugurated in Turin.
An article in “Il Fatto Alimentari” recently listed the main neko cafés in Italy, also mentioning the Crazy Cat Café in Milan, the Romeow Cat Bistrot in Rome, the Neko Café in Vicenza and Turin, the diCaneinGatto in Martignacco (UD ), the Gattò Bistrot in Portici (Naples), the Nero Miciok Cat Café in Palermo and the Cat Café di Chry in Cagliari, all venues characterized by attention to the relationship between customer and pet , practically recreating an atmosphere similar to that of a living room at home .
But what are the characteristics of these singular premises?
Animal cafés offer a very intimate and familiar atmosphere , and have comfortable furnishings in order to ensure the well-being of both the animals and their customers. Precisely in this sense they are generally located on the upper floors of buildings or in somewhat internal situations, away from the noise at street level which can disturb the peace.
Upon entering you are often asked to take off your shoes, wash your hands thoroughly , do not feed the animals (except for the crunchy treats made available by the structure), do not take pictures with flash and do not disturb the sleeping animals. In places with more traffic, access may be allowed to a limited number of people , and in some cases it is mandatory to book in advance.
Why open an Animal Café?
In Italy, this type of establishment attracts a mainly adolescent or rather young clientele . An idea of certain success is, therefore, to associate a fun and animal-friendly place with a fun menu inspired by fun food trends .
Bubble tea , bubble sticks , choco burgers , choco kebabs and brightly colored hot drinks are just some of the ideas to ensure that your business wins over patrons.
And what's more instagrammable than taking a selfie with a cat and a delicious rainbow snack?