I heard the news first from my friend Stacy when she tagged me in an album of pictures she took two weeks ago. I hadn’t heard that the Hello Kitty Cafe* would come to the North, so I was pleasantly surprised that it was back at the SM North EDSA after a long hiatus.
I knew it was coming, though. In December of last year, two pop-up stores opened at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City and at the Fiesta Duty Free Mall in Parañaque. Both had limited running dates till January of this year and served as precursor to the Hello Kitty Cafe** at the Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. Now, we Northeners don’t need to feel so left out of the good stuff. The Hello Kitty Cafe is back in town!
The last time I was in a local HKC, it was in 2000, shortly before the SM North EDSA branch closed. I remember because I have a memento of my last visit, a picture taken with a struggling eight-year-old boy who would not set foot inside the Cafe. Despite entreaties and bribery (with hefty servings of food which he ate, but outside the Cafe), my son refused to step in and had to be dragged inside for one picture with his Mama. Ahhh…memories!
I know I said I have sworn off Hello Kitty, but still, some youthful part of me longs for a little bit of her now and then. A♥, ever the enabler, suggested squeezing a quick visit to the Cafe during the last SM North EDSA 3-day Sale. We went in early Saturday morning to the mall to purchase shoes and some shirts for the boys and decided to drop in for a quick bite.
The new HKC can be found on the 3rd floor of The Block, and overlooks the main Atrium or Activity Center.
The cafe, in keeping with Hello Kitty’s feminine, feline character, is done in mostly white and pink. The design is tasteful and elegant, almost minimalist with a touch of whimsy. White picket fences delineate the mall real estate it occupies. Seating is limited.
Below, you can see Hello Kitty she lords it over the place. There is no mistaking that she is the center of the Sanrio universe.
Even the pitchers had her face on them! Cute! (I didn’t check the table napkins.)
But as concession to her friends, they can be found in cute doughnuts filling the display chillers. Below are My Melody doughnut faces with ribbon- themed doughnuts,
Hello Kitty and Baad Batz Maru face doughnuts (why does Bad Batz remind me of Angry Birds?),
and cheery Keroppi face doughnuts, with more ribbon doughnuts. You can’t get away from Hello Kitty and her ubiquitous red ribbons.
The cafe also serve cupcakes and small cakes,
and healthy green salads.
Unlike its predecessor, the new Hello Kitty Cafe does not serve full meals. It has a streamlined selection of sandwiches, salads, pasta and pastries. They also serve coffee and shakes. Since the Cafe is still on soft opening, some of the items on the menu may not be available but there is usually a sufficient stock of pastries on hand. The prices are a bit on the high side so be prepared to shell out serious money for Hello Kitty food.
A♥ is not big on sweets and pasta so we deferred our Kitty date for another day. He did, however, buy me a souvenir of my visit, which came in this plain white paper bag sealed with a Kitty sticker.
Who can resist a Kitty doughnut? Certainly not me!
I’ll be coming back soon to stay longer. I hope to taste their salad, pasta, and coffee next time. In the meantime, let’s spread the word that the Hello Kitty Cafe is back!
*Hello Kitty Cafe SM North EDSA
3rd Floor, The Block,
SM North EDSA, Quezon City
**Hello Kitty Cafe BGC
Third Floor, Uptown Place Mall,
36th Street Corner 9th Avenue,
Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City