In my room, there are maid figures from “Maid Cafe Collection”. It is a series of character figures which was released in year 2006, and these characters are wearing the uniforms of the maid cafes that actually existed back then. One of them is JAM Akihabara. It is one of the older maid cafes that existed since 2004. If you know Akihabara maid cafes well, you should have heard about it at least once. It is one of the historical maid cafe that surely has contributed to the maid cafe culture.
What makes JAM Akihabara unique? I think the answer is its regulars. There are regular customers who call themselves JAM-min or “JAM-tribe”. They are very close to each other, and they hang out even outside the cafe. They have tight bond, yet they do not build up the unwelcoming atmosphere to the newcomers, thus you will not feel exiled even if you are not part of the tribe. As a maid fan who believes one of the important function of the maid cafe is hang-out place of otakus yet it is important not to build up the atmosphere that is tough for newcomers to come in, I think JAM Akihabara was one of the ideal case of the maid cafe.
JAM was also very “handy”. The price was reasonable, and it is open until 5AM before weekends. If you feel like you want to stop by somewhere to have a glass of beer, JAM was always the place to go.
Unfortunately, the place is closing down mid of this month. I can only imagine how heart-broken Jam-mins were. When the announcement was made, twitter was filled with the memories of JAM. I am also one of “Schatzers” or regular customers of Schatzkiste, and I am certain how shocked I will be if I loose Schatzkiste.
Until the day it close, I am sure the place will be filled with JAM-mins and maid cafe enthusiasts. However, if you are in Japan and have a chance to stop by Akihabara, I highly recommend you to stop by this place, and remember one of the greatest historical monument of the maid cafe culture.