70B Antiques

Going back in time is a hot topic among physicists, scientists and PhDs. Is it possible? I say all you need to do is watch the Back to the Future trilogy. But the kind of time travel I experienced today took me way back to my childhood.

What store is this again?
What store is this again?

Do you remember being little with an over-active imagination? Would you turn your grandparent’s backyard into a secret garden, or run down empty hotel hallways while pretending you were living in a palace? Stepping into 70B reminded me of a time when I would explore antique shops, squeezing in and ducking out of the overcrowded floorspace filled with mirrors, chairs, books and other trinkets that seemed like disposable sundries to an adult, but were priceless treasures to a child like me.

Stained glass window
Stained glass window

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Honestly, I’d passed this place everyday for the better part of a year before curiosity killed the cat. It was worth the wait. Going in not knowing what to expect is the best way to go. The shop is located in the basement of a building on Sanjo Dori but the doorway has some shop wares propped in front of it, like in the photo at the very top.

IIIIIIII'm gonna swing from...
IIIIIIII’m gonna swing from…

It blew my mind. It reminded me of the antique shop I used to visit on Oxford Street back in Brisbane with my mother and I instantly felt like a child again, however, being a 22-year-old woman and fully grown was reason enough for me to NOT squeeze through the nooks and crannies like I used to. Rather I started snapping away with my camera. The store is meticulously clean and organised, compared to the dustiness and mustiness one might imagine that comes standard with an antiques store.

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It was a voice from behind that asked me “Are you travelling?” that got me a bit more information about the place. I turned to see Hiro, the co-owner of the store and we had a lovely conversation. He and a friend started the shop a few years prior after leaving university in England (hence his amazing English). They source goods from everywhere, even the countryside, as well as do wholesale. The name of the store actually comes from Hiro’s old address back in England while he was studying fashion. Clever man.

70B has all the knick-knacks you’d expect: furniture, paintings, figurines and dining-wear, plus mirrors, windows, lamps and even old cash registers. One thought kept running through my mind – how did they get the chairs down there? And can I just take everything home with me to my 1DK apartment?

70B is located on Sanjo Dori, on the way to Teramachi just past the Nakagyo Post Office. Links are here. Pop in, browse what they’ve got and say hi to Hiro, he’ll know what to do if you want something special. But remember to call it seventy bee, not nana juu bee like the Japanese customers do. You’ll break his heart.

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