Now that Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg all have Oumomo Japan Living to rival other Japanese retail stores and 200-yen stores in Canada, my family and I might have been slow pokes to only visit the Toronto one last week.
It's a big store that probably replaced a huge warehouse formerly used by another retailer that still shares the large strip mall at Green Belt Drive and Don Mills Road.
For us, the first visit was certainly novel. Japanese living may be quite different from Canadian living because we Canadians tend to like broad, utilitarian strokes and designs for larger spaces, whereas in Japan, everything has aesthetic details intended for small spaces such as apartments in Tokyo.
We liked the large varieties of almost everything from footwear to kitchenware to candies to ceramics and storage solutions. We picked up things such as computer gadgets and stationery that we would not normally find in conventional dollar stores.
What we did not find as much at Oumomo would be a wider selection of skin care products for women and men. There were lots and lots of facial masks and cleansers, but not much else.
But we found a dark chocolate bar called Meiji that gave us one of the best chocolate experiences ever. It was just over $2, true to most Oumomo's prices at $2 or close to it.
All in all, our first visit to Toronto's Oumomo was a lot of fun. However, we would like to see further business developments such as a point card, freebies, and other benefits to attract shoppers. After all, the free parking lot is so big that many people could visit Oumomo frequently even from another part of Toronto.