Tokyo coffee shop merges caffeine and sleep with innovative standing nap pods

Giraffenap Standing Nap Pods
The Giraffenap standing sleep pods debuted at the Nescafé Harajuku coffee shop in downtown Tokyo. Images © Giraffenap

In the fast-paced life of Tokyo, coffee shops are more than just a place to enjoy a cup of joe; they are havens for work, social interactions, and now, napping. Yes, you heard that right—napping in a coffee shop. Nescafé Harajuku in downtown Tokyo is pioneering this unique concept by introducing the Giraffenap pod, a standing nap pod that promises to rejuvenate its patrons in just 20 minutes.

The inspiration behind Giraffenap pods

The inspiration for this ingenuity comes from an unlikely source: giraffes, the long-necked animals that can sleep while standing up. These pods are designed to emulate the animal’s unique sleep style, albeit adjusted for human comfort. Manufactured by Koyoju Plywood Corporation, a Japanese company, the Giraffenap pod aims to be an oasis of tranquility in the midst of the urban hustle.

Design and features

At first glance, the Giraffenap pod appears like an oversized, modern payphone booth. But once inside, one can immediately discern the features that make it apt for a quick nap. The pod comes with extensive soundproofing to keep the ambient noise at bay. Ventilation is another noteworthy feature, as it ensures a fresh circulation of air, making it comfortable to stay inside for a brief period.

While humans don’t naturally sleep standing up, the pod is designed to make it feasible and comfortable. Multiple padded supports for the head, butt, lower legs, and feet can be adjusted to fit individual comfort needs. According to the company’s press release, the design aims to allow users to reach stage 2, or N2 sleep—a pre-REM state where the body relaxes, and breathing, heart rate, and brain activity slow down. This stage of sleep is considered ideal for feeling refreshed after just 20 minutes.

Giraffenap Standing Nap Pods Adjustable Pads
The Giraffenap pods feature adjustable padded supports for the head, butt, lower legs, and feet to make upright napping comfortable for humans, unlike giraffes who naturally sleep standing up.

Coffee and sleep: An unlikely pairing

It might seem odd to nap in a place that serves caffeine—the very antithesis of sleep. However, Nescafé Harajuku recommends a unique routine: savor a cup of coffee and immediately take a 20-minute power nap in the Giraffenap pod. This approach allows time for the caffeine to begin its stimulatory effects, making you feel more alert upon waking.

Giraffenap Standing Nap Pods Refreshed
Nescafé Harajuku advises enjoying a coffee before a 20-minute nap in the Giraffenap pod for increased alertness upon waking.

Customization and availability

The Giraffenap pod is available in two finishes: the futuristic white Spacia and the bamboo-finished Forest. It will eventually be available for sale later this year. Currently, anyone wishing to experience the pod will need to reserve it through Nescafé Harajuku’s online reservation system. The pods officially opened to customers on August 22.

Giraffenap Standing Nap Pods Spacia Forest
Choose between two distinct finishes: the futuristic white Spacia or the bamboo-clad Forest option, resembling a spaceship escape pod or a sauna, respectively.

Pricing information

The “Standing Sleep Coffee Nap Experience” is available for 825 JPY (US$5.59). This package not only includes a coffee but also provides 30 minutes of relaxation in a Giraffenap pod. Customers have the option to enhance their experience by selecting from a curated three-item menu. Options include a Roast Beef Baguette Sandwich priced at 870 JPY, a Shrimp Terrine Sandwich for 760 JPY, and a Grapefruit Mousse at 580 JPY. These selections are rich in tryptophan, an amino acid known to promote sleep, making them an ideal precursor to your nap session in the pod.

The introduction of the Giraffenap pod serves as an example of how traditional spaces like coffee shops are evolving to meet the multifaceted needs of modern urban life. Whether it’s a passing trend or a sign of times to come, the Giraffenap pod presents an intriguing blend of science, design, and the perennial quest for rejuvenation.

Giraffenap Standing Nap Pods White Spacia
The Giraffenap pods will eventually be available for sale later this year.

Source: Giraffenap