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Cool Japan / All aboard! Kyoto eatery caters to railway buffs

Restaurant owner Kenjiro Masuda shows off his railway diorama with a backdrop he hand-painted and rotates according to the season. (Mihoko Takizawa)
(Restaurant owner Kenjiro Masuda shows off his railway diorama with a backdrop he hand-painted and rotates according to the season)

The entrance to the Aioi Shokudo restaurant in Kyoto looks ordinary enough, but step inside and you will enter a railway buff’s paradise.
People seated to the left are mostly regular customers who came to tuck into a meal. On the right is special seating for railway fanatics, where diners are entertained by model trains cruising the tracks inside a 6-meter-long glass display case.
Restaurant owner Kenjiro Masuda, 62, began collecting model trains when he was in high school. Now, his collection has grown to some 800 train cars, enough to string together 70 to 80 lines. Between 50 and 60 of those lines are “put to work” on a regular basis inside Masuda’s railway model diorama. Many lines that have been retired in the real world can still be seen here in all their glory.

Masuda is meticulous with his recreations. He has installed interior lights inside the cars and lights in the stations using tiny lamps. He painstakingly adds special effects to brand-new trains, dirtying the roofs of the cars with paint to get that sooty look. For Masuda, the trains must look real.

His trains travel through scenes taken from real life. He recreated the images based on his memories of the Tanba area in Hyogo Prefecture, the old home of his parents. Masuda said he visited Tanba a few times when he was in elementary school. He remembers the trips on a steam locomotive from Nijo Station in Kyoto. Masuda created roads and rivers with paper and plastic sheets. Using toothpicks, he even fashioned tiny plastic traffic cones. ...

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Aioi Shokudo
Senbon-dori Demizu-sagaru
Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto
Closed on Thursdays
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By TS on Jun 5, 2012
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上記広告は1ヶ月以上更新のないブログに表示されています。新しい記事を書くことで広告を消せます。