I first learned about Maid Cafes through my otaku friends, especially one who has forever dreamed of opening one of her own. Back when I was still living in Manila, I always wanted to visit MeiDolls Cafe ever since it opened. Despite being the only maid cafe in the country, I never got a chance to visit it because they were based in Antipolo. I kept on hoping I could but there just wasn't enough time.
Fortunately for me, Cebu City has been expanding in terms of culinary options and taste. For a while now, the city has been bustling with construction from left to right. Not only that, there have been plenty of cafes to choose from-- local cafes, international franchises, Korean-inspired cafes, and many more. Getting tired of the usual coffee shop ambiance, I make it a point to visit different cafes from time to time. My previous post on the Best Cafes to Fall In Love With in Cebu has gained quite a number of readers, which inspired me to collate a new set of cafes on a separate blog post. So for this blog post, I'll be sharing a list of the Maid Cafes in Cebu. And like the first post, restaurants shall be added onto the list as soon as they are available.
Before listing down the maid cafes in Cebu, it's good to have an idea what it really is and what makes it different from a regular cafe.
What is a maid cafe?
According to Wikipedia: Maid cafes(メイド喫茶 / メイドカフェMeido kissa / Meido kafe?)are a subcategory of cosplay restaurants found predominantly in Japan. In these cafés, waitresses dressed in maid costumes act as servants, and treat customers as masters (and mistresses) in a private home, rather than as café patrons. The first permanent maid café, Cure Maid Café, was established in Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan, in March 2001, but maid cafés are becoming increasingly popular. As they have done so, the increased competition has made some use unusual tactics in order to attract customers. They have also expanded overseas to countries like China, South Korea, Taiwan, Australia, Hungary, the Czech Republic, France, Mexico, Canada and the United States. Why??? The main idea of a maid cafe is to attract male anime, manga and video game fans (otaku) who usually fantasize about the characters in these forms of media. The female waitress wears a French maid uniform and the male waiter wears a butler uniform. In some cafes, there are males who crossdress as part of the cafe's theme. When I first learned this, certain green thoughts came to my mind. But still, the curiosity of knowing what made them so different from regular cafes invited me to pay a visit and actually experience them.
What to expect from a maid cafe? First of all, while the main reason for putting up a maid cafe is to attract men with this certain type of fetish, there is nothing kinky about them. In fact, customers need to follow the rules of these cafes. I'll discuss the rules after this portion. 1. They will call you Master/Mistress. 'Welcome home, Mistress!' 2. They wear a French maid/butler uniform.
3. Apart from menus, they will also offer wipe towels for you to use.
4. Maids serve their Masters and Mistresses by being the one to stir cream and sugar into their coffee.
5. Some cafes provide spoon-feeding services, which is what I expected after seeing the scene from The Other Woman movie.
6. Customers can ask to play video or card games with the maids.
7. Another service that has increasingly become popular is offering grooming services (extra fee) by giving them back, arm, or leg massage and even ear cleaning. The customer, however, remains fully clothed.
Rules to follow in maid cafes
Regarding the maid cafes here in Cebu, I'm not too sure they are strict about them. Probably if the extra services were provided, you would have to follow the rules:
1. Customers should not touch the maid's body.
2. Customers should not ask for the personal contact details of the maid.
3. Customers should not invade her privacy (stalk).
4. Taking photos of the maids or the cafe interior is forbidden. If you would like to have your photo taken with a maid, you will have to pay an extra fee.
As mentioned, the maid cafes I visited in Cebu do not really follow the 4th rule but for the other three, well they should be basic logic!
Cebu's Maid Cafes
Here is a list of the maid cafes in Cebu, in no particular order. I will add more to the list next time I discover them:
Located in an old house in Talamban, Tomo Cafe is one of the popular maid cafes in Cebu City. The interior is homey and spacious, offering plenty of activities for customers to choose from: watch movies, play board games, read Manga, comic books, etc. The food is delicious and they also offer non-alcoholic beer. Wait for my next blog post which is a full review of Tomo Cafe.
Tomo Cafe is located at 86 Gov. M. Cuenco Ave., Nasipit, Talamban, Cebu City. They are open from 10:00 am-1:00 am Cafe Tiala
Based on the description of what maid cafes are, Korean-owned Cafe Tiala can be considered as one. But instead of using Master/Mistress, they call their customers Prince/Princess. They also wear pink French maid outfits. The food they serve include sandwiches, Korean noodles, coffee and many other options. You may read my full review of Cafe Tiala here.
Cafe Tiala is located at the 2nd Floor of The Forum Bldg., Archbishop Reyes Ave., Cebu City. It is right beside the newly renovated Cebu Grand Convention Center and just before you go up the flyover to cross Escario.
Situated in the same complex as my favorite go-to place on a weekday morning La Vie Parisienne, a French restaurant in a pink colonnial house sits quietly as it observes the rest of the world. Having dined there once, I particularly enjoyed La Maison Rose (The Pink House)'s iPad menu since you no longer have to ask the servers about the food. All you need to do is to swipe and tap so your order will be processed in the kitchen.
While it isn't exactly a Maid Cafe, the servers wear a pink French maid uniform. And if I remember correctly, they call their customers Mister/Mistress. I guess I have to pay another visit so I can remember!
La Maison Rose is located at 371 Gorordo Avenue, Lahug, Cebu City (inside La Vie Parisienne).
As the newest maid cafe in Cebu, plenty of people attest that Cos Cafe is the closest they can get to the real maid cafe experience. The cafe has a collection of manga, anime, comic books and other stuff that make it an unforgettable visit. They have decent food consisting of rice meals that you can choose from. It also has plenty of seating options for each guest to feel comfortable in. More importantly, there is a dressing area in the back where you can actually change into one of the costumes on display and channel their favorite characters.
Cos Cafe is located on the 2nd floor of JY Square, Salinas Drive, Lahug, Cebu City. They are open from 10:00am - 12:00am daily.