Tokyo bars and restaurants have started to reopen as the city begins easing restrictions put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. At Cheers One, a bar located in the Japanese capital’s upscale Ginza district, mannequins dressed as cheerleaders help brighten the mood and enforce the new social distancing laws.
“Our restaurant looked very empty and we wanted to add more excitement,” Arata Funabara, owner of Cheers One, told Reuters. The cheerleading-themed bar counts both women and men among its clientele and the mannequins are completed with uniforms and pom-poms.
Other safety measures used by Cheers One include face shields and gloves for the bar’s cheerleader-dressed waitresses who perform karaoke songs on request. The shields and gloves are also offered to patrons.
Across the globe, bars are beginning to use creative measures to help adapt to coronavirus-related restrictions. In South Korea, Robot bartenders are shaking up the bar and cafe industry.
There are robots currently on the market that can make cocktails from upwards of 25 bottles and others who can carve perfect ice balls in a fraction of the time that it takes a human hand.
At Coffee Bar K in Seoul, the robot behind the bar is named Cato. He’s six feet tall and dressed to impress. “Do you see this? A beautiful ice ball has been made. Enjoy some cold whisky,” he says in Korean.
Over at the Cafe Bot Bot Bot coffee bar, a robot arm mixes up mojitos and other cocktails. Robots can provide a kind of consistency behind the bar that humans can’t, but they also lack the creative freedom and heavy pours that many bar-goers love.
While it may be a bit disappointing that customers can no longer speak with bartenders in the same proximity as they are used to, global innovations are adding up. Hopefully, they’ll help alleviate some of the stress.