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Best Department Stores in Tokyo

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Isetan is not only one of the oldest and largest, but also perhaps the most foreigner-friendly department store in Tokyo. Its unique (and free) I club offers non-Japanese shoppers five percent discount on many selected items, plus a monthly newsletter containing the latest promotional information. Isetan also stocks a special range of women's clothing (Clover Shop) and men's wear (Supermale) in slightly larger sizes for those not quite petite enough for the standard Japanese range.

Lumine store in Shinjuku is a vibrant shopping centre which houses garments stores, accessories, cosmetics and pretty much anything else you fancy. However, be prepared to stumble across the place, for there are no English guides here. However, being within the station itself, it is convenient. Be forewarned, though, that while Lumine 1 containing women's wear is easy to navigate, Lumine 2 with men's clothing is split into four separate sections. This maze like shopping centre also has a plethora of cafes and restaurants though, so you can always put up your feet if the shopping gets you tired.

Tobu Ikebukuro is one of the biggest department stores to be found in the Nakano-ku area of Tokyo. The store is comprised of several big buildings and has nine floors for your shopping pleasure. Along with a wide variety of brand-name clothing shops, home-decor stores, furniture stores, beauty shop outlets and much more, the store is also home to over 50 restaurants serving different cuisines. Unlike many department stores which are merely places to visit when you require essentials, Tobu is the kind of place to go to if you want to splurge or spend a day out with friends.

Keio is not the largest of its kind, but with 11 floors it is brimming with variety, boasting two basement floors of food (both Japanese and western), four floors of fashion and various Japanese goods, among them stationery and homeware. An unusual feature is the "Recycle" second-hand clothing shop, perhaps to be found on the same floor as Burberry and Aquascutum! A comprehensive English-language store guide points out precisely where to find your pickles or your Ralph Lauren!

Seibu's popularity springs largely from its unassumingly named but well-promoted offshoots: Loft, an amalgamation of lifestyle goods aimed at the young generation; Seed which promotes up and coming fashion designers; Parco, an enormous collection of the latest innovative contemporary labels for the youth; and Wave, a specialist music store. The Shibuya store is neatly split into separate areas for men's and women's fashions, while Loft, Seed and Parco are housed in separate close-by buildings.

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