Tiny target demographic, I suppose. Places like Hooters where the emphasis is on T&A rather than frilly cuteness do fine in the US, so it's not like "food served by attractive people" isn't a successful business model, it's just the wrong kind of eye candy for most Americans. Doesn't help that most maid cafés serve shitty food. They only work in places where you have a large number of people who are into the moe aesthetic/ enough of a weeaboo to put up with crappy food for the sake of kawaii meidos. So, pretty much only at cons.
I love maid cafes, in my area, we've seen a lot come and go. I think the only way a maid cafe can do well in the US is
>for the love of god, don't hire uggos just because they're your friend maybe some hardcore weebs might go because "zomg" maid cafe, but the rest of us aren't paying extra and traveling a bit of the ways out here to be served by some hambeast who thinks she's hot shit.
>also, don't hire 15 girls that look the same, you need some variety, not all customers have the same tastes. get some different ethnicities in there too, get tall girls, short girls, chubby girls, cute girls, beautiful girls, exotic looking girls, and market them in a way that flatters them. like a beautiful girl might want to be marketed as "Cute" but no, it isn't gonna work. hell, throw in some pretty boys to work there as butlers too
>you are going to scare away normalfags with the whole maid thing. that is why these cafes keep failing. get a set number of days to have as normal days, and have maid days, on weekends or whenever. gotta keep the normies around, they are the main part of the population!
>GOOD FOOD don't serve cheapass ramen, get a good cook. I don't care how lovely these girls are, you need good food to do well
>activities! fun activities! on your "maid days" have fun activities to do with customers! some might pay extra to do so even! get some videogames setup, have those shy nerds open up with a game of apples to apples, you're choice!
>location don't have your cafe in the middle of buttfuck nowhere, have it in a place where weebs can easily get to, the asian area of your city, wherever.
>uniforms. yeah, you could go the bodyline route. but some maids boobs might be too big, or some maids might be too tall. don't go the boring black x white maid route, get some colors in there! make sure you have a good seamstress to help you out on this one
I want to open one so badly. I'm a decent cook and great at baking, plus not too hard on the eyes if I do say so myself. I'd only hire beautiful girls and a few attractive men. Entertainment would be practiced thuroughly. Food would be fresh.
In all honesty though, I'd probably just open a regular cafe and host "Maid Cafe" nights once a week until I see how it takes off.
Japan has a very deeply embedded cute culture. While there are many people in the west, including America that follow it, for the most part, cute isn't what sells here. By and large, we're not into cute girls, cute dresses, and cute concepts like maid cafes.
Sexy is ultimately what sells here. When most Americans think of maids, they think of either old women who clean your house, or a sexy short lacy dress with a tiny apron, ala Halloween.
It's also a generational thing too. I think I'd find more people in the millennial group being down for something like this. Anyone in college right now was growing up during the anime boom and was exposed to this particular aesthetic. I haven't met many people around this age who aren't down for some Pokemon or admit to watching Yugioh after school. Whereas I had Fresh Prince, and my first anime exposure was Sailor Moon, and grew into this realm of nerd culture as it was being born at the start of the Millennial spectrum.
But I imagine Gen-Xers or Boomers who didn't follow anime or the early roots of anime in the 70's and 80's confusing and jarring. Most people in this group that I meet are so normal and ordinary that it hurts.
Also when it comes to Detroit, the Midwest is full of trash (of all races). When kids step outside those established "what is normal for us" boundaries, it's seen as really strange and they'll get a lot of stigma. They also have a lot of those influences around. Having grown up in a white trash family, I got a lot of shit from siblings and other family members of thinking differently and not really being into what they were doing. I imagine similar situations is what keeps a lot of people from exploring other cultures and expanding their horizons, even if it's just to the point of going to a silly maid cafe, because they just wouldn't know what the hell it is. But Hooters, everyone knows what hooters is.
Applied for a national maid cafe and got turned down gulls, but someone else in my crappy little town got hired instead - she's a 14 year old weeb and I actually have money, a job, and experience in retail but I'm pretty sure the reason was I'm not white or look like a loli, even though I could pass for a teenager easily. I'm so mad I want to start my own maid cafe.
I'm South asian, not Japanese/Korean/Chinese, but I know I'm not uggo and I'd look hella cute as a maid. Most of the maids at this cafe are uggo as hell desu. Weird mashed white girl faces and some are really fat.
I should start my own cafe where I hire maids for how cute and useful they are, not just a bunch of white girls because -racism-, seriously who wants a pasty white blob as a maid with an unfortunate face when you could have a small girl who looks hella adorable, regardless of the fact whether she's black or any other ethnicity?
>>8808206 >Detroit Uhh, that is not the place I think of when I think of nerd culture. Places out in the NW make sense tho. I live in Portland, OR and we have a huuuuuge nerd community. I've seen lolitas walk down the street here. Almost everyone plays MTG here. I've yet to have a job here that didn't have a bunch of weebs working there. Shit, the clerk at Sally's tried to suggest an anime to me. I don't even watch anime...
Anyway. The problem with Portland is that we're already a huge restaurant town. We're also a college town unfortunately (hence the amount of hardcore libs) which is a bad mix for trying to get business in a food place. College kids don't have money for that, they live off ramen and 5$ coffee and are barely making their rent.
I've worked in the food industry for a few years now so I'm very familiar with how hard it is to run a food business. Even something like a grocery store is difficult. And where I live there is literally competition in every corner, or there is something near by that will deter customers like a strip club or a cluster of bums asking for change.
Still, I think a maid cafe would work here, but you'd have to cater to every kind of nerd culture cause if you only cater to a niche group, that'll be it for your customers and you'll see them once before you get shit down.
I'd like to try and run one someday, but I'm in no place to run a business at the moment.
Like others said, cuteness isn't really a thing in the USA. Maid cafés thrive on kawai culture while USA prefers sexyness. Normies might go in once out of curiosity, but they won't be recurring customers.
Doesn't help that most anime fans in the USA are teenagers and young adults. In Japan, anime seems to be an interest of all ages. Most maid café visitors are anime fans, so that'd mean that Japanese clients are more likely to include adults who have a disposable income, while USA maid cafés have to make do with weeaboo teenagers or students who can't make it to the café often and probably won't spend much money during their visit.
Don't cater to weeaboos and nerd culture. As counterintuitive as it sounds. I would market it towards pretentious hipsters and social justice warriors under the guise of broadening their cultural horizons by taking part of an authentic Japanese cultural experience by being served by strong independent women who are rejecting the overt sexual overtones of the western patriarchy by embracing the cute and modest aesthetics of Japanese maid culture. Should I start kickstarter so I can make one billion dollars? Who wants to fund me?
>>8808395 >But I imagine Gen-Xers or Boomers who didn't follow anime or the early roots of anime in the 70's and 80's confusing and jarring. Most people in this group that I meet are so normal and ordinary that it hurts.
Honestly what is with this? I thought this too back in my XD Look At The Normies high school age, but I'm 28 now in a 'real' and it STILL seems like the case. most of the 30 and up crowd is so weirdly dull, they'll get into like Breaking Bad or football but not even be all that. passionate about it. Our call floor is mostly Millennials and they've got tons of posters etc up (from mainstream series to weeb shit) and management thinks they're all odd for doing so.
Easy access to an explosive amount of media didn't exist 20+ years ago. You had some TV, movies, and that's about it. Nowadays everyone has a streaming account, Netflix, HBO, and access to the latest million dollar TV series that a significant amount of the country watches. And that doesn't include things that are now mainstream like video games. Media is an ingraned part of most millenials' lifestyle, so obsessively watching the new Game of Thrones episode each week and then yapping about it with your coworkers is completely natural.
Usually the closest thing I see Gen X and Boomers get obsessed with is sports. (which has been around for decades)
>>8808468 Very well put. America is just too obsessed with sex to have something simply cute. Clientele is probably the most important issue and, like anon said, teenagers using their allowances can't fund a business.
I think it could work maybe as a cafe extension of a manga/anime shop in a really busy area (Manhattan, London, L.A.) but it'd have to be very well put together. If the food is really delicious that on its own can keep the place afloat.
Living in NYC I'm surprised there isn't a good maid cafe yet. There's so many diverse neighborhoods in Manhattan (K-Town, Little Italy, Chinatown) that I know people wouldn't be weirded out by it since they're surrounded by different cultures literally everyday. But having cute maids is so important and people always pull some shit like "Oh I have a really cute friend, she can work here!" and she's atrocious. I'm not even going to lie: I would fucking love to work at a maid cafe but I know I'm not cute enough so I won't even bother. But it's mostly management's fault for hiring unfortunate looking girls.
One of the reasons is that they are nothing like the maid cafes in Japan. The few times I have been at the cafe in the OP pic, they barely serve you, and when they do its only bringing you food. Otherwise they simply sit and talk with their friends.
I know I'm going to sound like a super fucking weeb for saying this, but the experience doesn't work in English because there are no registers of politeness. When a maid or butler speaks to you at a cafe in Japan, they're using respectful/archaic grammar that you don't run across in everyday conversation, so it adds to the feeling of specialness.
>>8808505 THIS. This is what was wrong with the NYC maid cafe.
>>8808445 >pop-up cafe I feel like this is the only way something like this would work here, since like other people have said it already - most people interested in this sort of thing would go only once for the novelty. People that would go regularly are a very small crowd and far more spread out across the country.
Having a stable clientele is probably the hardest bit - I mean, with any business it is but especially something like this. You would only be able to do in a city, you'd probably be better of doing it only a certain area of the city, and even then WHICH city? In Japan there's the anime neighborhoods and shit you can go to but here you would need to find a city with a suitable location with a population interested enough to keep your business affloat. The only place I can think of is somewhere with a very high concentration of tourists regularly visiting the area. Perhaps a place like NYC but the rent is gonna be through the roof if you wanna be in a neighborhood that's relevant.
If that's the case then I further agree that the other best way would be just to have certain maid nights or days and expand those as needed.
>>8808245 Wow, maid cafes are exactly like hooters with just a different aesthetic. I totally never thought of that until you mentioned it just now.
>>8808508 What else is a waitress supposed to do? Also I'm a faggy American, and I work in the service industry but I don't want some waitress sitting down and trying to get to know me. I don't care what the atmosphere is, unless it's a stripper (in which case I won't be ordering their food) get away from me.
>>8808471 A lot of the 30 and up crowd have kids and other obligations that keep them from dumping a lot of time and money into fandom. But you also have confirmation basis: most 20-year-olds aren't fannish, and there are plenty of people over 30 who are extremely into something and have sunk a ton of time and money into their Batman cosplay/video game collection/Star Wars action figures/whatever.
The market just isn't there to support it. Even though anime is more popular than it used to be, the group that's dedicated enough to weeb culture to go to a maid cafe is a fraction of a fraction of the population. On top of that, the kind of people who are so into anime that they want to run a maid cafe generally are younger and don't have any experience with running a business in the first place or the restaurant industry. Even professional, great chefs often have to shut down their restaurants,
>>8808699 It might work, but then it would lose a lot of its appeal as a maid café. And a lot of changes would have to be made to attract families. I can think of a few: > get rid of the anime and Japanese aspects since children don't care about that > heavily tone down the cutesyness so families with boys will want to eat at your café > have a big menu with a lot of regular, western food because children are picky eaters > Make sure your waitresses are good with children and want to be around screaming children all day > make sure it's 100% childfriendly and a safe environment for kids to run around
It wouldn't really be a maid café anymore, but a regular family diner with girls in frilly dresses. I don't think many people would be interested in working at such a cafe.
>>8808465 I think Portland would be an excellent spot for a maid cafe. You'd probably need to make it a board game cafe on top of that and maybe give the girls accessories like dice and chess pieces.
Sad that Akiba closed in SF before I was able to go but I would have probably gone way sooner if they weren't stuck up in the northwest corner of the city which is pretty out of the way for a lot of people.
I have a friend who really wants to open a maid cafe. Im going to help out and be a maid. We will be having a meeting at the end of the month to establish plans. She's going to do a one day thing first. Gauge the interest and maybe get some backers. The uniforms for the event are pic related in pink. >>8808699 That's what I'm hoping. I think we should really cater to the child demographic. We are a border city with a prosperous Mexican one in which people are already used to novelty stuff and character restaurants. For that reason I really think this can work out if we play it right. >>8808363 >good food Cafes are generally half kitchens and don't work like dining restaurants. But I'm hoping general cafe foods will be enough >location Near the local college. Potentially. What do yall think?
What do you guys think of a Japanese cafe that happens to have a uniform learning halfway between Americano diner and maid?
It wouldn't be the selling point of the place, but would just be "there" as part of the general decor of the place. The diner itself would work on having great Japanese style cafe food and a good ambiance. Perhaps some anime streaming on TV but a more PC family friendly angle.
>>8809302 Well for one you are going to have increase the length of those skirts to the knees if you want it kid-friendly. People like us are immune to it but high skirts and showing leg is as slutty in the west as cleavage is in Japan. My grandpa once told me that I was gonna get raped for going out in a regular cutesy skirt that was mid-thigh. Of course its ridiculous, but you have to cater to western standards of modesty unless you are trying to be fetish.
>border city with a prosperous Mexican one found your demographic, Mexicans love cutesy weeb shit ME ENCANTE. prepare for Mexican creeps on a daily basis.
>I'm hoping general cafe foods will be enough Unless you have low prices on coffee and tea and there is a vacuum of no cafes nearby its not going to be enough. If your food isn't bringing people back its going to fail. It doesn't have to be fancy and expensive food, but it does need to be high-quality. Get a good chef.
>Near the local college If your prices average over $5 per plate college students wont have the money to eat there regularly.
Maybe a more Victorian or romantic Era cafe would work better. Something akin to downton abbey since that was popular enough. It takes away some sexual factors and could be appropriate for bookclubs, older women, date nights and maybe have a mother child high tea event once a month. A liquor license would also make a big difference
>>8809371 >lengthen skirt Oh yes ma'am. She is super protective of us and is going to have security and an absolute zero tolerance policy. >food She is looking at super high quality pastries, drinks, and etc for the menu. I will see what she thinks about doing full on dinner foods. It's just food regulations are easier when a cafe stays a cafe. >Mexicans Excellent. Even this side of the border we are over 80% Hispanic. Basically anything that does well over there has a good history of sticking on this side of the border too. >College students Good point. But the college happens to be near the west side of town where the richer people live. Probably the only prime location on the eastside would be one of the malls. >>8809391 I kinda didn't want to say my location exactly but I really would like the help. El Paso, TX. 20th largest city in America and 8th in Texas. One half of the worlds largest international metroplex with our sister city Cuidad Juarez, Chihuahua. However they are definitely the more prosperous side. We have a comparatively lower standard of living but also a low cost of living. Still, we are going through a sort of renaissance right now in terms of getting new attractions and locals actually spending money on them. I'm glad she's changed her mind from having it in Las Cruces NM. It may be the second largest city in new Mexico but still has about 1/6th of our population and most of them are college students and retirees.
>>8809391 >>8809438 Me again. >couple maid days a week Does that mean switching out uniforms too? That might be hard, she has so many ideas. She's hoping for eventually having specialized days like butler days or schoolgirl days for back to school and would even give student discounts etc. That might be something that gets put on the backburner as this becomes more real
>>8809445 you MUST cater to normalfags. I'd suggest having fridays/satudays maid days since most likely students would be the most interested in that and those are popular student days.
and yes, that means switching out uniforms. so for every day that isnt friday/saturday just have a normal dress code.
I've been looking to invest in a maidcafe if its local and am willing to put money down only if it follows the requirements I put, so that's why I asked the location.
I did tons of research ages ago since I knew someone who wanted to start one up. but the location they wanted it in meant that if they wanted to wear maid costumes they'd have to pay them "actor's wages" so the idea was quickly scrapped and they just opened up a regular cafe.
most normies see weird costumes and they nope the fuck out so thats why you have to limit your maid days.
and I don't mean to rude but
>for the love of god, don't hire uggos just because they're your friend
please follow this. this is one of the many reasons detroit's cafe was a laughing stock
>>8809469 Yea I'm not really sure where she picked us out from. Some of us are in the local Lolita comm, others are from a cosplay group. I was both. The rest I'm not sure but in truth, everyone's real pretty and fairly diverse. I call her friend but irl I've met her but once. I think I remember her mentioning once that we would actually only open the maid cafe weekends. Let me check the announcements.
>>8809469 Not TX girl but I am also working on scaling up to a full service Japanese cafe. I am starting out as a food stand+outfit for now so that I can move around my city and find a sweet spot + check normie responses but I am hoping that if that is profitiable I can look to open by next year.
I pretty much meet all your criteria except instead of having only a few "maid days", I don't try to create a maid experience other than than regular service by attractive men and women in a toned down standard uniform that pays homage to maid and butler without being over the top. The selling point is just having really delicious Japanese-western quick service food that you can't get in the states.
I am not sure if I am looking for an investor but I would be happy to talk to you about it. I am currently in Japan so there might be a time lag. firstname.lastname@example.org
>>8809445 >That might be hard, she has so many ideas
This can be a major down fall, first lesson in any business plan is that you literally want to stick to a few ideas at a time, literally about 3 so for example: >Weekends maid cafe >Weekdays normal days >whatever else here
If you try to do so much at once and barely starting, you will 99% fail since you thinned out yourself so much, it will cause more money and more stress.
Also for tge people who live in the Los Angeles area of the States, do you believe that the area of Little Tokyo is good for a maid cafe? There's always weebs especially on weekend and have cosplay meets so I would think it can be a good idea to open one there since most stores more into the whole otaku culture aspect.
I want to open a maid cafe in Portland but I rather work with someone instead of taking it on myself. The idea I have is leaning towards classy rather than cute or sexy. I want it to be like stepping into a different era, the decor will be very Victorian esque. Classy, more on the traditional side for maid outfits and there will be butlers too. Higher end desserts and small savory plates ideally.
>>8809482 I can't find the notice. I can give more info on this by the 31st. I will look up statistics as to how much a deterrent costumes are to the populace in the meantime. >>8809510 Agreed. But to be sure this isn't a pipe dream. She's been working crazy hard to get the funding and work out logistics. For the stand alone event the maids are going to be volunteering and just keeping tips if any. A lot of people really want this to happen and I really think it can.
>>8809510 its good but the maid cafes there have failed. only successful one is a sexy maid cafe. >>8809496 were you the one that posted this? >>8809358 I think a uniform like that would work out really well, since there are many chains in the US that do this
I'm sure that you could go around the "only set days for maid days" thing if you actually ran the cafe well, as most cafes run purely on novelty and forget that they actually have to run a good business.
I'm interested in discussing things with you and I'll shoot you an email when I have time.
>>8809531 Yep that was me. yeah my priority was offering the kind of cafe food I am used to here in Japan in America, the uniform thing was sort of just a bonus gimmick. Ill keep an eye on my inbox for ya.
>>8809510 Little Tokyo is pretty much dead. the only time it really has any good foot traffic or traffic in general is during festivals and when Anime Jungle has an event. Other than that it's not worth it.
I tend to go at least once a month and always during festivals. and it's dead monday-friday
>>8808384 Loyalty cards? If you have weekly event nights people would usually come back once or twice a month, and having cute-yet-normie non-event nights would help attract customers. >>8808395 >Most people in this group that I meet are so normal and ordinary that it hurts. Yes, this. I don't know how they entertain themselves. When I ask friends of the family and coworkers if they watch TV or go online or play sports or go out shopping, the answer to every question is a noncommittal 'lol yeah a bit sometimes'. Please, get some passion for something in your life. It's sad and slightly creepy. >>8808396 >Weird mashed white girl faces and some are really fat. AKA every failed maid cafe ever. Also, work on your salt levels.
>>8808363 The picture you linked is a maid cafe known as Moe Moe Kyun. It's quite popular & some of the girls actually became quite well known afterwards. There's an application and interview session when they want new members. They are very picky and the customers often visit to see cute girls. But even so, it's only limited to conventions only. Shows that it is hard to keep it in business for normal days despite its popularity, and girls are more willing to work if it's for a short period of time since they might have other commitments
>>8809135 There are already so many game stores here in Portland that also offer food and usually alcohol. I used to go to Guardian all the time to play MTG and drink booze. I would totally have a gaming area though - and like someone else said, maids can play games with customers and what not.
>>8809513 Are you dead serious about this anon? I can give you a throw away email as I'm interested and also in Portland. Unless you're actually in Maine, then I can't help. I have a ton of food service experience and know how most cafes/restaurants run. There also might be people we could go into business with as the people I work for now are opening a 3rd location and might be interested in owning a gimmick cafe. The maid theme kind of fits the gimmick of where I work and we already have the pastry menu and we'd have access to a chef for a savory menu as well and also alcohol if we wanted.
>shitty overpriced food with sub-optimal service with a league of spoiled maids placed on a pedestal by white knights Seriously every maid cafe's selling point is the weaboo fanservice and weaboos can only ingest a fair amount of shit until they have to regurgitate every crap they ever received.
There was sort of a maid/anime style cafe in San Francisco but it had to shut down. The food was very mediocre to the point of overpriced. But I doubt that was the reason they had to close down. In my opinion the location was very remote with no residential traffic. Basically a street with only residential housing and that one cafe on the street. No one walks by that street except if you live there. Location matters. If no one walks by your cafe then you can be sure you get no business.
>>8810041 We do gluten free but none of our food is vegan. It wouldn't be hard to incorporate this but I'm not sure why as most places do this already, we wouldn't find new customers this way. It's more like a diner than a cafe and no we don't already have maid uniforms or anything fancy. The fanciest part of this place is the food.
>>8808384 Good food and drinks and decent prices i think. Also perhaps not being too over the top and in your face, like i would go for the novelty but if the maids are always coming over to your table or its loud and distracting, then people arent going to come to have a coffee and catch up with friends. So maybe have certain days that are more character-ish.
Same for if its much more expensive or worse quality products than other local places - people will be willing to pay more once for the novelty, but not for regular coffee and cake etc.
>>8809513 Kind of sounds more like a themed cafe rather than a specifically 'maid' cafe. I don't know anything about Portland so this may or may not be applicable, but if you have historical stuff around (not necessarily Victorian) that draws in tourists, you'll probably get trade from them.
There are a few places near me that are successful 'historical' cafes - one is in a house from the 1500s and has been a cafe since the 1600s or 1800s i think. Its Victorian themed, waitresses in the long black and white maid dresses etc. But its an area that has a lot of tourists for historical landmarks and architecture (Roman, Victorian and Georgian). I imagine thats why they are still successful rather than only lasting until the novelty wears off.
>>8808871 Hm, maybe it could work for the novelty, but part of the draw of a maid or butler cafe is the experience. getting served food quickly from a truck on the side of the road by a girl in a maid uniform isn't quite the same idea as sitting down in a cute cafe and having a girl dote on you.
maybe it could work, maybe not, IMO the way I see it is that it would be pointless because like I said people go to maid cafes for the experience of being "served" and attended to, not just looking at a cute girl for 2 minutes and then leaving
Keep in mind that college kids are on a budget, especially if it's gonna be nerds and weebs. Don't be afraid to have solid, reasonable prices especially if you're going to be having nice food. I think it would be a wise idea to offer nice discounts to people with student ID's in order to pull that demographic in.
Food is going to be really important so you don't want to just make it any old cafe - you may want to take a look at bistro's and style it similarly to those. It would also be a good idea to have a variety of interesting and creative drinks.
Also can't stress the importance of fresh food enough. No one is gonna want to pay for frozen or repackaged shit. It's okay to have some, but try not to have too much. You really want like 80-90% fresh stuff. If you're a cafe that really honestly shouldn't be too hard. Even though it's ~just a cafe~ it'd be wise to try and pay attention to tips on running restaurants. Changing your menu seasonally could be worth looking into as well.
>>8810028 I feel like one could work really well if it was set up in/nearby Japantown in SF. I mean if a BTSSB store can stay in business then a food service sure as hell should be able to. There are weebs who go there practically every weekend and I have seen people in cosplay for no appearant reason during weekends. If money is an issue then only doing the maid thing on weekends should help somewhat. I don't want to set one up myself but darn if I don't wish someone else would.
>>8810168 That seems like a good location to me, too. It's full of weebs who keep coming back as well as tourists who come once for the novelty. It tends to be dead during the week, but it gets crowded on weekends and festival days. They could even do special events for festivals.
I bet rent is really high (never looked into it but it is SF), but the area certainly has the demographic to support it. They would have to market themselves to someone with a little more money than your average teenage or college student weeb, but I can see it possibly being sustainable. Certainly, it would be one of the better locations in the city.
If Crown and Crumpet ever has to go, that small cafe area on the first floor of New People seems like the perfect place for something like this.
>>8810154 >Also can't stress the importance of fresh food enough. No one is gonna want to pay for frozen or repackaged shit. You know most places don't serve actual fresh food, right? Not unless it's a high end place, but then you'd need to hire seasoned line cooks and chefs and then we're no longer talking about a cafe.
Because we're not sexually detached from each other enough to find sitting in the mere presence of a cute girl feigning interest as worthy entertainment.
Also, the food is mediocre, over-priced, and then what, now I have to tip for coffee and a sandwhich? I just don't think Asian Maids are mainstream attractive enough, or sought after by any crowd, compared to the way sports fans go to Tilted Kilt on gameday.
>>8810177 NewPeople is not a bad spot, but I think the overall style of the maid cafe needs an overhaul to work in SanFran. DESU, I stayed in Japantown for a week and it was just completely dead except for Saturday.
I think an attractive, modern coffee shop that roasts Inoda or other Japanese brand coffee with light brunch food served by well-dressed, well-groomed staff not stuck to adhering to a uniform would pull in more normal crowds, lunch dates, and pop in for coffee. As suggested, maybe a maid or host event occasionally would be a neat promo, but it's just so hard to imagine mon-fri crowd throwing money at girls in maid costumes.
>>8810293 I think they mean you have to make an effort. Like instead of serving cookies straight from a packet you bake premade frozen cookies on the day and give people something that tastes fresh. Also, if it's a cafe, making fresh food is really not as hard as making fresh food in a restaurant. Even if you have batches of food frozen and ready to reheat it's better than stocking up on supermarket TV dinners and soup packets. Most maid cafes seem to think squeezing into a uniform and going 'Master desu nyan~' is enough to keep them in business and ignore the food entirely, so it's really not hard to build up from the utterly shit foundations. Maid cafes will need much more work than normal cafes, but it can be done.
>>8810461 Yeah so you're talking about doing prep. Most places do this but it's still good that comes to you in a box or in a bag that you then cook and give it to a customer "fresh". My place of work used to have someone that would cut off chicken filets from a roasted chicken but that takes a lot of time so they just order chicken breast now and we flatten them and then fry them. Real fresh food takes a lot of prep work and that is costly and time consuming and you're not gonna want that in a cafe. You're right, it's gonna be a lot of work but all food industry stuff is fairly difficult until you gain the muscle memory for it. Even then it can be really overwhelming. If you only had baked goods all your prep would be done in the morning and you'd make enough to sell all day until you're sold out, and most shops here close when they're all sold out of baked goods unless they serve something else as well.
You could also keep baking products but that depends on how much you can get and what your turnover is.
This is why I wanted to piggy back off the place I work for already. The themes go together and one of the owners already has a set pastry menu that sells really well and we've got guaranteed customer base. Both locations do about 2-3 grand just for their lunch rushes and we're opening a third location.
Even if the other anon wasn't serious I might just go and present the idea on my own but it'd be better if I had someone go in with me as a partner.
>>8810473 You don't even need cooks, you'd need bakers.
I'd hire cute girls, absolutely no fat girls, have good food, have the girls actually waitress with just some cuteness thrown in.
It's still essentially a restaurant and those are pretty hard to keep open without a good location, good food, and a lot of word of mouth (which you get from having good food). The maid thing wouldn't be enough to get a regular stream of customers in since you need to general public to go as well. So the food and good service is really key.
>>8808469 The SJWs hate anything having to do with females being attractive, sexy or cute. They tend to dislike anime and Japan in general do to its general not-caring attitude in regards to political correctness and bowing down to censorship. Even though anime tends to have lots more competent and interesting females they hate them anyways because "hurrrr they're attractive muh objectification!"
>>8813648 >hire cute girls, absolutely no fat girls So this^ anon makes me wonder. Is cute subjective? How does one go about hiring without getting sued on discrimination? According to this article about Hooters: http://www.businessinsider.com/how-can-hooters-hire-only-women-2015-9 >Title VII of the Civil Rights Act lets companies discriminate on the basis of "religion, sex, or national origin in those instances where religion, sex, or national origin is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the particular business or enterprise." Does "cute" fall under this?
>>8813842 you have to get a special license that explains why you're running your establishment that way pretty much. hooters has one and a coffee place in NE has one too. it basically just explains that the establishment is not 100% inclusive of the public work pool. strip clubs have them too. they're not hard to get.
>>8813844 Huh, good to know. Sounds embarrassing to try to explain though. >Hi yea, we are trying to sell a sort of fantasy escapist world with cute girls working as maids, b-but it's not a fetish thing!
>>8808206 Where the weebs congregate the rent is probably too high for a niche thing like that. The first places that come to mind that have the necessary weeb density are SF, LA, Seattle and NYC and those are basically four of the most expensive land markets in the country.
Then consider that weebs have a notorious reputation for being cheap, short on cash, and poor tippers. To say nothing of the dudes being kinda creepy.
And finally the profit margin on a restaurant is pretty thin. I really doubt the maids are gonna get paid what they think they deserve (who does?) but in this scenario there's also a limited pool of employees. This will invariably spark tension.
This is just stuff off the top of my head but I've worked in small family restaurants to cooking at some fucking fancy venues.
>>8814954 There's a Chinatown in Houston (more Chinese/Vietnamese/Japanese influences than Korean in this part of Texas) too where rent is relatively cheap (in comparison to other large cities) and there's a high level of nerd culture in the area too. It might do well here if someone manages to work past the difficulties, especially if the food is good. A customer base can easily be built too with regulars and possibly tourists, and there's a good amount of people with money here too. Just wanted to add on, though there's also a high level of competition food wise. If there's a novelty of themed foods tho, it could easily stand out besides from using maids.
>>8814912 Most restaurants only make money back on alcohol sales while the food's there to get people through the door. Maybe a maid cafe could make a go of it if it opened as a bar at night. Could offer karaoke.
Still hoping the other portland anon is here because I'm thinking about getting out of the food industry finally but I still want to do the maid cafe thing and the place I work for would be the only way to get into that and actually opening a place up. Because now is when I have the connections, and as soon as I quit, they go away.
>>8815041 Hey, just want to let you know I'm a filthy kommiefornian but I do love Portland (Eugene a bit more if I'm honest) for the coffee, Blue Star donuts, and hiking... I could sperg about food for hours.
I'd be more than happy to hit up a maid cafe on my (usually) 2 trips a year. Not that my patronage would make or break such a venture, but I would totally do it.
I live in an itty bitty touristic town and they have pic related. My fantasy has always been to show up one day dressed in classic and outshine the actual workers. The bussers dress cute though, in like, long bloomer-like pants, peasant shirts and aprons and they look like caring aunties.
>>8815050 Good to hear!! If I just piggy backed off someone else's business tho, I'm not really worried about the place flunking. They've already got customers. Getting their female employees to wear cute maid dresses wouldn't be hard, either.
Our coffee is pretty meh tier, unfortunately. I like it but it's sour as fuck.
Also I like Eugene as well! Too bad a maid cafe wouldn't go over well there.. it might scare the hippies.
>>8813983 >>8813842 I wonder if Disney can get away with it easily because they have characters that they are specifically trying to recreate. If so maybe you could do that, just come up with and sketch out some 'characters' that are the backbone of your idea or something then use that to justify why you picked cute people. No clue if thats how it works though
>>8816865 purely speculative based on the situation with my exes, but guys tend to have a lower baseline of caretaking regimen. add the weeb modifier and you've a trainwreck.
there used to be days when i was in college where i'd roll out of bed, brush, splash water on my face, wet down my hair, quick application of deodorant and wouldn't have a problem all day. even on a bad/rushed day, my ex's routine was thrice the length.
so when you take into account the already basic standards for men, and add the 'weeaboo factor' where they are basically incapable of self-awareness/evaluation, you generally get a fucking disaster in the making. skin care, hair care, hygiene, AND dressing and presenting well is beyond the ken of the average weeb dude.
god help it if they're expected to conform to a skinnier bodyshape as well.
I don't think something like this would ever fly in the States, honestly.
What I COULD see being successful here is a themed bakery/cafe, where the staff is required to wear a cute uniform that isn't too costume-y.
If you're familiar, in the Chicago area there is a Japanese market called Mitsuwa - inside is a super cute bakery called Pastry House Hippo. Everyone wears a cute little bandana, and the inside is very 'warmly' decorated with wood details, etc. Very Miyazaki-like. And, the baked goods are very good. This is the kind of thing I can see being very successful here - a cute, quirky place to get bread, pastries, a light lunch, etc. Not some creepy ass maid cafe.
>>8813842 Cute IS a bona fide occupational qualification for a maid cafe. That's why TV stations can require their female anchors to look a certain way. They back it up with contracts and so it's very easy to ensure you have girls that meet standards
>>8817143 Using Miyazaki as reference more than weeby maid cafes would go across sooo much better in the states, imo. You could still be cute and japanese inspired but it would be more wholesome and kid-friendly. Not that there's anything wrong with not being wholesome and kid-friendly, but I personally would never go to a maid cafe because the whole concept - from a western perspective - makes me feel like a creep.
I agree. I'm someone who's been pretty deep into anime, video games, jfash, etc for the better part of my adult life and I still would not set foot in a maid cafe. I would bet that 90% or more of Americans would not be caught dead inside of one.
>>8817175 This. Japan prefers women who are cute and childlike. Having childlike looking women wearing maid uniforms won't work in America. Americans prefer a sexy mature look like hooters, childlike looking women in maid dresses would creep them out.
>>8816865 Is this cafe V? Cause if it is then dear jesus cause a few of my lolita friends rave about their "hot and sexy butlers" a lot. I swear none of them are males, hell I am sure that dog isn't even a boy!
Why can't we have good looking males in bulter cafes that are actually males or really good passing females atleast.
To make a restaurant work the financials need to be solid. There are two choices with location: you can look for a main street space with good frontage and solid foot traffic or an off the track destination cafe.
A main street shop gives you volume and marketing. The problem is that you will be paying significantly higher rent particularly since you are competing with retail establishments and you will need significantly more back of house space for storage and the kitchen.
A destination stop will have lower rent but you need to establish a client base yourself. That means that the money you save on rent you may need to spend on marketing and promotion. For a niche market like a maid cafe a destination stop may be better.
Your back of house need to be managed carefully. You need to design a menu that fits your clientele, fits the capabilities of what your workers can make or what you can source, and you can price competitively. Food cost at a restaurant should be about 28%-32% of menu price, if you can't get the cost low enough you may need to reconsider your suppliers, adjust your menu or rethink your market segment.
Food is important but service is more important. A restaurant with incredible food but indifferent service will lose to a restaurant with good food and incredible service. What this means is your staff needs to be well trained and experienced. The problem is that food service is not an easy field, younger workers aren't going to be as experienced and you'll have a lot of turnover. Essentially I would treat it like a theater production because what you really need are cast members, not just food workers. What you need to ask yourself is if your location has this sort of labor pool to draw on.
>>8813842 You can hire all the only white, skinny, rich, whatever niche girls if you want and nobody can say discrimination unless you specifically tell them "we're not hiring you because of your race/gender/age," which is fucking stupid to say anyway. Otherwise you just say they weren't hired because the other girls had better qualifications and experience even if it's not true.
Alright gulls >Start butler cafe with mostly cute and sexy butlers >Actually hire guys and not unattractive girls like >>8816865, maybe hire 1 crossdressing girl for diversity as long as she's actually cute >Still hire a few maids but mostly men >Market to weaboos with the maids and niponophile atmosphere while simultaneously marketing to sjw's/feminist fantasies who want attractive men catering to them Profit?
The concept isn't universally appealing enough to be sustainable, and the target demographic probably doesn't have the income to go regularly. It's a novelty, like many others have said upthread. While normies might go once, the ones who would likely be your repeat customers probably don't have the disposable income to return at a good enough rate. Even if they did, the population is so sparse there's no way you'd attract enough to stay afloat. That's why the pop-up/convention maid cafe model works best.
Aside from that, there's making sure to hire the right people, have proper business people running it (not just weebs who think it's cool), and having food that's decent.
Basically the target demographic for this kind of a business just can't support it on a regular basis. Sticking to pop-up shops that tour conventions would be a better idea.
>>8820408 I'd say I'm cute-ish but even I wouldn't do it, I just don't think I'd be attractive enough to really be good at it. Maybe if I worked out for awhile and shaved on a normal basis but it's fucking weird for me to think of doing something like that without understanding you should be there.
>>8820910 granted, its a hideously unflattering photo. But quickly browsing through their facebook, they had maybe one cute maid, two at a push. I don't understand how people miss the crucial part of a maid cafe being the appeal of the girls. cute uniforms do nothing if they're stretched over the top of an overweight goblin.
They've got some tie ins with ~ gamers & feminism ~ which probably explains the terrible mascot they've designed.
>>8820905 >moving to Seattle in fall for college >excited to see maid cafe, they hold special place in my heart >sister was part of early maid cosplay cafe, never ended up leaving Japan like mom and I, sent me tons of cute Polaroids of her and the other girls >she died of cancer several years ago >anyway, excited for maid cafe in Seattle >see these beasts
Just why...Really, it's do disgraceful, are they not conscious? They should think of customer...
>>8820970 Yeah the food actually looks good, in concept anyway not sure about the actual execution.
I do have a few concerns about the types of Japanese influence in some areas, and lacking in others.
Matcha and azuki is pretty divisive, and the high-end western dishes seem almost out of place and don't really feel Japanese-influenced enough. Thats a small gripe though, the chef and owner needs to just not dress as a maid and stick to the kitchen.
>>8820988 >Japanese food should be done by Japanese people. Well I agree in general, but what I mean is Japanese-style cafe food which is already...western. Japan has improved the hell out of pretty much anything you can eat in an American cafe, its a drastic improvement.
Hamburg steak or soft-cooked omurice is a good example. What I don't think is a good idea is harsh matcha and "beany" azuki desserts which is just gonna turn off western pallets. I am a complete weeb and have lived in Japan for over 6 months and I only sort-of tolerate those flavors in desserts.
They should stick to cute and tall parfaits, which ironically is easy to do with nothing but western ingredients.
>>8820541 >>8821470 This may seem stupid but how picky in generally are cafes in hiring people? It is paid and not just volunteers right? It seems like it would be really fun but I don't have any experience working in a restaurant. I only have a bunch of unrelated volunteer hours and experience from a job I have now that is basically a mix of getting shit done and customer service. I am good talking to people and am average in looks (probably above average in terms of con goers tbqh).
There's actually a maid cafe project that seems like it might work out. It's Cottontails LV. But that's only because it has a sexy concept., the name explains it, they're bunny girls with some butlers in Las Vegas. I think it might work, but they're con only for now.
>Why don't they ever work in the USA I think they'd need attractive employees for it to work but people would probably call it sexist or unfair to hire waitresses/waiters solely off their looks Which is kind of silly given all the breastaurants around
>>8820408 >>8820389 It's just generally not an appealing kind of job for guys. The whole "pretend to be interested in an unattractive member of the opposite sex for your personal benefit" strategy might come naturally to most women but it's weird for most men.
I'm surprised no one in the this thread talked about the pop up cafes in NYC held by coscafenyc. So far, they've sold out tickets for all the events they've held. I've actually been a part of one of the cafes and it was really fun; I think with the more cafes/events they organize, the better these events will become. It makes me pretty excited to see what will be next.
>>8822867 Changes every year. I'm pretty sure it's less than $25, but you only get like 15 minutes of one-on-one time and a snack and that's it.
>>8822927 heard the head of the con is picky with faces/bodies. Atleast there aren't any whales in this cafe, lol They all look decently put together, although some could use better wigs. I'd agree with your ratio.
>>8822845 The only cute people in this pic are the butler at the bottom next to the pink girl and the maid with the shiny wig and flower at the back. But this is one of the least ugly cafe's I've seen.
There's a few major factors that I think affect this.
One is that Japan has a long tradition of eating/drinking establishments where staff girls interacting with customer guys is the big draw, from hostess bars to the infamous nopan kissa of the 80s and such. You might even be able to trace it back to geisha establishments, but that's kind of a stretch.
Another big factor is customer density and access. Maid cafes are spread all over Japan now, but that took a few decades. They started in Akihabara, a place where you have as many otaku in one place at any given time as you do at a large convention in the US. It's hard to understand if you've never been there, but there's so much of a potential customer base packed into that area all the time that it makes it easy to attract them to a maid cafe. In the US, you don't really have anything like that, except at a convention.
By the way, the girls at maid cafes aren't really anything to write home about. I've been to several famous ones, and maybe only 10-20% of their maids would be attractive outside the costumes. What they are, however, is very socially skilled and good at interacting with customers, which isn't something that can be said of the kind of people that come to work at maid cafes in the US.
>>8822027 mate have you ever eaten chinese food made by a white person? it's fucking gross. different cultures have different cooking styles and unless you're a professional, they don't tend to cross over well.
>>8824146 On location issues, I think the only place that would work is a commercial space with a lot of geek media outlets, essentially you would want a place that has an arcade, comic book store, card shop and the works within walking distance of everything. Unfortunately downtown is pretty much synonymous with soulless corporate outlets with rich people who has a strict NIMBY for any geeks. These days it's franchise restaurants/bars that isn't a fast food place, boutiques that costs you an arm and leg to buy a pair of pants and the death of arcades mean any hope of having a maid cafe that would do well. It has to be that perfect storm.
That's it, part of the charm with a maid cafe/hostess club is letting customers have a place where they can freely socialize with fewer fears of faux pas, and by that I mean having security on your ass when you do something stupid enough.
>>8825897 But we are talking about professionals here. I doubt your local sushi place is going to hire an amature. So you're claiming that just because someone is white they can't make sushi? Even pros? Racist dumbfuck.
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