Friday, February 27, 2015

Cat cafe(s) cometh

Posted By on Fri, Feb 27, 2015 at 11:12 AM

At the beginning of the year, we told you of the plan for Pub Dog Colorado, a place coming in 2016 that holds the first variance allowing for guests to dine indoors with their dogs. 

click to enlarge So meta. - SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
  • So meta.
But since many people will tell you that cats are more entitled than dogs — and to some more charming and endearing — the kitties have already earned their right to hang out near your food and drink inside of cat cafes

I took a gander at one myself when I was passing through Seoul, South Korea last year, where it makes more sense on account of many people in a city setting not choosing to have pets at home. Get a coffee, get your lovin' on, win-win. 

I confess I'm much more skeptical in U.S. cities where people widely own pets, so the pull to go experience fur at an additional cost must at some point surpass the concept of novelty to sustain a business. 

But that's what's happening so far at the recently opened Denver Cat Company, and what two local projects hope will occur for them. 

On Saturday, March 7, Kitty Love Cafe and Gallery plans to open inside of Look What the Cat Brought in Shelter, offering tea, coffee and soda plus pastries; entry will be $5 ($10 for a family of four). And hours will be Saturdays only from 1-4:30 p.m. 

click to enlarge Watch your cup, fools. - SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
  • Watch your cup, fools.
So this one has more of a community mission, and with such limited hours, doesn't quite capture the same experience available as at full-time lounge spots. But here's so more info about them and cat cafe history from a press release:

Although Kitty Love Café and Gallery will only be open one day a week with limited hours, we are excited to join the ranks of only a few in the United States. We have local artist's works displayed as well which can be purchased directly from the artists. We will refresh the artwork once a quarter.

The first cat café opened in Taiwan in 1998 but the concept didn't take off until the early 2000s. The original idea provided cat companionship for an hourly fee for the pet deprived city dwellers. Cat cafés are already thriving in London, Paris, Vienna, Budapest, Munich, Berlin, Spain, Lithuania, Italy and Dubai.

Purina ONE was responsible for America's first cat café in New York City, but it was only a "pop-up" open for less than a week. October 2014 the first US Cat Café opened in Oakland with Cat Town Café followed by one in Naples Florida. The Denver Cat Company opened for business in December 2014.

Next up, former Indy intern Avalon Manly is hoping to launch Avalon's, though her Kickstarter campaign is off to a sluggish start. Here's a brief description of her goals from that page:

Avalon's is an innovative, multipurpose cat cafe and event space, serving the untapped midtown and northern parts of Colorado Springs.

Colorado Springs has long been notorious for its want of comfortable, trendy social venues. While downtown and Old Colorado City have begun to shrug that reputation, the mid- and northern sections of the city are still very obviously lacking event and social community spaces.

Avalon's will be the community and creative hub of northern Colorado Springs, offering locally-sourced care and bar services, in addition to making available best-selling books and art. It will also host popular events, such as movie screenings, games, tutoring, and cats. 
click to enlarge 'Hey. Hey. Hey. ...Over here. Look at me, stare into my eyes. Hey. Hey. I'm gonna spazz out any second now. Hey. Hey. ...' - SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
  • 'Hey. Hey. Hey. ...Over here. Look at me, stare into my eyes. Hey. Hey. I'm gonna spazz out any second now. Hey. Hey. ...'

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