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Located in the west of Shinsaibashi , America-mura (Ame-Mura) is Osaka’s “American Village”. Its streets are lined with shops, restaurants, clubs, and cafes which cater to teens and young adults. Apart from a scaled-down replica of the Statue of Liberty that overlooks the streets of Ame-Mura, the area’s architecture doesn’t imitate America in a noticeable way, but the fashion definitely does. Vintage clothing stores, hip hop clothing shops, and resale brand stores can be found in abundance.
One of Amemura’s biggest draws for young Osakans is the centrally-located Triangle park, which offers a perfect spot for hanging out, drinking, and people watching. The narrow streets around the park and throughout the area encourage foot traffic, which is another reason why the area is preferred by the young.
More people on the streets also means fewer cars, which is why I prefer cycling through Amemura whenever I traverse the Shinsaibashi area.
Meet Ayan and Rino
Originally from Fukuoka, Rino came to Osaka to study dance at EXPG Studio, and now works as a professional dancer. She was dressed in a New Era stocking cap, a Zara jacket, Zara sweater & Zara pants, and furry boots (of an unknown brand). She opted for the hot Streamer cafe latte because the weather was still a little chilly for her taste.
Ayan chose the iced latte, and though wearing a winter jacket by Moncler and knee-high boots by Charles & Keith, her short Viavanda sweater dress was definitely more suited for warmer days. Ayan accessorized with a Miu Miu bag and 3D nails by Atory at Nail Studio Romance.
Ayan’s hat reads “Lucid Dream”, and was made by her friend Tokiwato, who started the Lucid Dream brand. Ayan liked the brand so much that she got the kanji tattooed on her left thigh.
Ayan’s glasses are Tom Ford. The resemblance to anime character Arale Norimaki was unintentional, she says.
Ayan works in a clothing store and often models. She loves traveling, and uses it to help improve her English. She recently returned from a solo trip to several European countries. Her future dream is to be young, famous and rich. With extra emphasis on “young”, she joked.
Rino says being a famous dancer would fulfill her dream. She most loves dancing to hip-hop, but Hikaru Utada is her favorite singer.
Her boots were given to her by a friend, which is why she doesn’t know the brand, but said she absolutely loves them. As far as brand preference, she doesn’t have one. “I like anything as long as it’s cool”.
Ayan and Rino typify the outgoing, fashionable, and friendly youth of Osaka who are a big part of Osaka’s character.
When asked for their New Year’s Resolutions for 2024, Ayan responded “To enjoy every day”. Rino replied, “To challenge myself every day”. Hopefully everyone will bring that same positive energy to the upcoming year!