Hello Kitty fans, put these adorable Sanrio cafes, hotels, and theme parks on your bucket list.
Japan’s Hello Kitty made her debut in 1974 and swiftly became one of the world’s most recognizable characters. No matter where you go, you’ll come across the cute white cat with a pink bow on her ear and no mouth. Sanrio (the official home of Hello Kitty & Friends) initially put the character on stationery and toys, but fans grew hungry for more. Now, you can visit Hello Kitty attractions in Russia, America, Taiwan, and other countries. Fans can stay in Kitty-themed hotel rooms, eat bow-topped macarons at her cafes, and wear pink clothes from her boutiques. Diehards can even get their teeth cleaned in a Sanrio dental clinic or give birth in a Kitty maternity ward. Enjoy this Hello Kitty world tour, and fair warning—these places are pink cuteness overload.
Hello Kitty Grand Cafe
WHERE: Irvine, California, USA
In 2018, the Hello Kitty Grand Cafe became the first permanent Sanrio restaurant in America. During the day, Californians can enjoy afternoon tea served on Kitty-shaped metal racks. The snack selection includes cat-shaped donuts with pink sprinkles and lattes decorated with her face. At night, adults can hang out in the Bow Room cocktail bar, which has a glowing Hello Kitty silhouette on one wall. Sip on a “Berry Kawaii” cocktail with pink cat-shaped ice cubes, and take plenty of selfies with her four-foot-high statue.
INSIDER TIPGrand Cafe fills up quickly, so make a reservation through their website before your visit. Hello Kitty also has themed cafes in Las Vegas, Bangkok, Malaysia, and Beijing.
Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour
WHERE: Johor, Malaysia
Hello Kitty takes on a swashbuckling persona at Malaysia’s Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour. The waterfront hotel has 12 themed rooms featuring the Japanese cat, including some with a blue nautical theme. Sleep under a mural of Pirate Hello Kitty—she has an eyepatch and a hook for a paw, and is surrounded by anchors tied with pink ribbon. Other suites are a strange mash-up between the cat and the Wizard of Oz, with paintings of her journey on the Yellow Brick Road.
INSIDER TIPA few accommodations in Asia have a single Hello Kitty room, including Lotte Hotel Jeju in Seoul, Grand Hi-Lai Hotel in Taiwan, and Lalita Boutique Hotel in Hat Yai, Thailand.
Hello Kitty Maternity Hospital
WHERE: Yuanlin, Taiwan
Babies born at Hao Sheng Hospital can truthfully claim that they were Hello Kitty fans from the time of birth. Every aspect of the Taiwanese maternity ward is Hello Kitty-themed, from the nurse uniforms to the birth certificate. Mothers-to-be can prop up their feet on cat pillows, and stare at the pink Kitty wallpaper when labor begins. When the newborns arrive, they are wrapped in either blue or pink Hello Kitty blankets.
WHERE: Temple City, California, USA
At Parklane Dental, patients are more likely to say “aww” than “ahh.” The dentist’s office has several colorful rooms starring Hello Kitty and her endearing friends. Illustrations of Kitty, My Melody, and Gudetama extend from the floor to the ceilings, so that you can gaze at their round faces while reclined in the chair. Some designs show the cat dressed as a dentist, with a mouse as her hygienist. When your cleaning is over, Parklane sends you home with a Hello Kitty-themed toothbrush and floss.
INSIDER TIPParklane’s Sanrio rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis. When you schedule an appointment, ask for a themed booth in advance.
Hotel Grand Chariot
WHERE: Awaji, Japan
Go glamping with Hello Kitty in her home country of Japan. Awaji’s Hotel Grand Chariot offers 23 “cocoons,” or high-end cabins, and one of these is decorated to honor Kitty-chan. The cocoon looks like a spacious wooden igloo with circular skylights that let you gaze at the stars. After a nature walk, lounge on the sofa with stuffed toys, or take a bath in the cedar tub with Hello Kitty bath salts.
INSIDER TIPAwaji also has a Hello Kitty Smile complex with a themed restaurant, theater, and modern art gallery.
Hello Kitty Island
WHERE: Seoul, Korea
N Seoul Tower, the highest observation point in Seoul and a popular landmark, has been conquered by Hello Kitty. Her “island” is, in fact, an exhibition space designed for Instagram. Snap a selfie at the neon pink Hello Kitty bus stop. Then, explore her house that has a white grand piano, cat-shaped bookcase, and wall of roses. Before you go, write a wish inside a red paper heart, and hang it on the corridor of love so that it comes true.
Dream Island Theme Park
WHERE: Moscow, Russia
This February, Moscow opened Europe’s largest indoor amusement park, which spans 300,000 square meters. Dream Island has nine colossal themed lands including one dedicated to Hello Kitty. Fans can hug mascots dressed like her and her boyfriend Daniel and watch a live musical performance at the fairy-tale castle. Stop by the Hello Kitty cafe for desserts and be thrilled by a theme park ride that looks like spinning cakes.
Hello Kitty Airport Lounge
WHERE: Taipei, Taiwan
Taipei’s Taoyuan Airport has a Hello Kitty lounge complete with pink seats, a play area, and a nursing station. Head to Terminal 2, Gate C3 and look for a cheerful waiting area topped with a bow. A statue of Hello Kitty dressed as a pilot greets travelers, and pastel murals show the cat visiting landmarks in Sydney, India, New York, Rome, and Paris. Kill time before your flight at the enormous gift store where you can shop for Kitty jewelry, backpacks, kitchenware, and even a robot vacuum.
INSIDER TIPIf you’re traveling to Japan from Taipei, book a seat on Eva Air’s Hello Kitty-themed jet, which departs from this lounge.
Ki La Ra Boutique
WHERE: Hong Kong, China
If you visit a regular Hello Kitty store, you’ll only find a few basic items of clothing, such as a T-shirt printed with her likeness. In contrast, Hong Kong’s Ki La Ra specializes in chic Hello Kitty-themed fashion, which it produces exclusively. The label caters to adults, so the designs are subtle and have more colors than pink. Try on white ankle boots with a 3D kitty bow above the heel, black cardigans with silhouettes of her face, and scalloped shorts with ribbon at the hem.
INSIDER TIPYou can also shop at Hello Kitty stores around the world. If you’re in Tokyo, visit the Sanrio World Ginza flagship, which has two large statues at the entrance.
Energy Bistro and Karaoke
WHERE: Hacienda Heights, California, USA
Located on the outskirts of Los Angeles, Energy Bistro & Karaoke lets you belt out your favorite songs while surrounded by Sanrio characters. The largest room at Energy holds up to 40 warblers, and on one of its walls depicts the cat surrounded by a starry night. Hello Kitty fanatics can also book a themed booth that has a long pink couch and her image on the surrounding walls. Snack on cute dishes like a Hello Kitty chirashi box with raw fish and rice in the shape of her head. If you’re a death metal screamer, head to the Aggretsuko room and growl your heart out.
INSIDER TIPEnergy Karaoke requires a minimum two-hour booking, so gather together a group of friends and prepare to duet.
Hello Kitty Beauty Spa
WHERE: Dubai, UAE
Get a cat-themed makeover at the Hello Kitty Beauty Spa. True to Dubai’s opulence, the spa treats you like a princess for the day. Ask for Hello Kitty-themed nails and a matching hairstyle that twists your locks into her signature bow. Mothers can book a session with their daughters and treat them to water-based nail polishes and natural beauty products. When the session ends, indulge in Kitty-faced cupcakes and pink lemonade at the spa café.
Keio Plaza Hotel
WHERE: Tokyo, Japan
Live the Hello Kitty dream at Keio Plaza Tama, a Tokyo hotel with multiple Sanrio themed rooms. Open the door with a bow-shaped keyring, and find yourself in a Hello Kitty fantasy bedroom. Put on her themed slippers and wash up with a Kitty toothbrush before falling asleep on the red bow pillows. In the morning, enjoy breakfast in bed with a cat-branded omelet and white toast molded like her head (complete with holes for the eyes and nose). When you finally leave the room, look for the Princess Kitty photo spot in the lobby, which depicts Her Majesty in a pink gown and long curly eyelashes.
Tai Tai Mountain Park
WHERE: Taiyuan, China
From a distance, China’s Tai Tai Mountain Park looks like any RV park. Look closer, and you’ll notice Hello Kitty peeking out from the vehicle windows. The owners of the park converted old buses into cozy accommodations, complete with kitchens and bathrooms. A few of these are dedicated to Hello Kitty, so you can wake up wrapped in pink sheets and pour coffee into a Kitty mug.
Hello Kitty Castle
WHERE: Shanghai, China
Take a stroll on Shanghai’s Xinhua Road, and you may be surprised to see a pink and white mansion with a famous cat’s face hovering over the front pillars. Known as Hello Kitty Castle, the house is either an eyesore or pastel perfection, depending on your taste. Go inside to see how the famous cat lives; she has an all-pink bedroom, and plush cat-shaped chairs in the dining area. Next door, you can enter a bright green-and-white manor to pick up Hello Kitty merchandise.
WHERE: Tokyo, Japan
For Hello Kitty devotees, the ultimate pilgrimage is to Puroland, her original theme park on the outskirts of Tokyo. Pass through the glowing rainbow entrance, and you’ll be bombarded by life-sized mascots and cat-shaped food. Some of the dining options are on the dubious site, such as blue curry with rice shaped like a cinnamon roll. The rides are only for small children, but anyone can drop yen at the Hello Kitty gift shops. Don’t miss the head-scratching Hello Kitty musical, which lowers characters from the sky and has them dance on stage to frenetic J-pop songs.
INSIDER TIPSanrio also has an amusement park in Oita, Japan, called Harmonyland and a Hello Kitty Park in Hangzhou, China. Additionally, you can see Hello Kitty attractions and board her Cupcake Dream ride at Universal Studios Osaka.