Thursday 24 May 2018
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economist
3 months ago

Tattooed foreigners are putting Japanese bath houses in a quandary

A sight no Japanese bather wants to seeA WARM aroma of citrus bath salts wafts through the lobby of the Thermae-yu spa in Tokyo’s Kabukicho district. The instructions at the entrance are chillier: drunks and people with tattoos should stay out. The sign, says Yuichi Ohama, the spa’s manager, is directed mainly at the gangsters who haunt the local area, a dense warren of brothels, cabaret bars and striptease clubs. Yet the staff increasingly find themselves turning away tourists, too, he laments: “We’re surp

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