The Maple Club, Tokyo, c. 1920.

1920sAmusements & RecreationsCommerceGeisha/Maiko/Onnanoko
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Maple Club, Tokyo, c. 1920.

Maple Club (Koyo-kwan), at Koyo-zan, Shiba, Tokyo, c. 1920.

“The Maple Club (Koyo-kwan), on Maple Hill (Koyo-zan) in Shiba, a sort of international club and restaurant combined, is celebrated for its cuisine (lobster dinners a specialty), its geisha dances (the ‘Maple Dance’ can be arranged for through a member; cost , ¥10 to ¥35, according to the extras), diplomatic banquets, etc. It is well known to many visiting personages of rank. Many titled members.”

Terry’s Japanese Empire: A Guidebook for Travelers, T. Philip Terry, 1914

Maple Club, Tokyo, c. 1920.

Map: Shiba Park

The Maple Club (labeled “Koyo-kan / Japanese Restaurant”) was located just outside the western precincts of Shiba Park, on this map at left-center.

“[In Tokyo, Jan. 3, 1898] I next went to the Maple Club, a place in itself which defies description. The place is a club but such is its beauty that visitors are allowed the privilege of going over it by taking off their boots and paying ten cents.  The house is very large for a Japanese one but no doubt there are many members.  All the rooms are for tea or dinners or other entertainments of Japanese order.

“… There is nothing to see and yet there is everything to see.  So clean and so absolutely artistic in every detail that you are left in wonder and to wonder to yourself, are you the civilized Briton, really civilized at all?  What is your house or your club in comparison to this?”

Travels in the Land of the Gods: The Japan Diaries of Richard Gordon Smith (1898-1907), edited by Victoria Manthorpe, 1986

“The Koyokan (the Maple Club), in Shiba Park, is a noted restaurant, at the gate of which a police box stands. The feast of nobles and the entertainment of foreigners are often held in this club.

“This aristocratic restaurant is excellent in everything rooms, gardens, views, and waitresses. The ‘Maple Dance’, performed by the young and beautiful girls of the club, is very famous and popular.”

The Nightside of Japan, by T. Fujimoto, 1927

Maple Club, main building, c. 1920.

Maple Club, main building, c. 1920.

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