A Hello Kitty-themed café in Sorsogon City has been luring straight male customers—sometimes in groups, sometimes with their girlfriends or wives—for a completely understandable reason—their cheeseburger and pizza.
Kitty Tours Café was originally intended to be a travel and tours office and a restaurant, but two months since the opening of the café in January, the staff has been busy accommodating customers who patiently line up outside the café for a seat, café owner Audrey Lustestica said.
Lustestica is a mother of two girls, 8 and 1, and is from Pampanga who moved to Bicol with her husband in 2016.
“Sometimes, a group of men would visit us to order our pizza and burger. Sometimes, men would date their girlfriends here,” Lustestica said, adding that they even have 60-something-old customers who appreciate the café.
Aleth Honra of Legazpi City in Albay said that they were travelling across Sorsogon when they first saw the Kitty Tours Café.
“Although I was with boys then, we decided to give it a try. One of my friends is an avid fan of Sanrio. After that, my male friends said they are already a fan of Hello Kitty,” Honra said. “The second time I visited the café, I was with my boyfriend. He didn’t protest. We were after the food.”
Since then, Honra said that she has been recommending the café to her friends in Legazpi City.
Lustestica said that the Hello Kitty-themed restaurant in Pampanga inspired her to start her own.
“When I moved to Bicol, I saw my friends in Pampanga post on social media about the HelloKitty-inspired café in Pampanga. When I visited Pampanga, I visited it. It was huge. I wanted to start a small Hello Kitty café in Sorsogon.
“I usually organize kids’ parties. That was when I started collecting Hello Kitty items. I thought they were cute and beautiful to look at, so I said, maybe that can attract customers,” Lustestica said.
Lustestica’s elder daughter, Hailey Janna, also started collecting Hello Kitty items like bags and clothes.
Some Kitty Tours Café customers said that Lustestica’s daughters sometimes help in serving customers.
Darlene Roco works near Kitty Tours Café. She said that the café has been her stress reliever especially when she has a busy schedule.
“I gave the café a try because of the interior. Hello Kitty always makes me happy and gives me inspiration when I’m sad,” Roco said.
Aside from the menu full of Hello Kitty-inspired cakes, chocolates and cupcakes, some customers also said that they bring their children to the café because they are allowed to play with the Hello Kitty stuffed toys and items.
Hello Kitty, arguably the most famous Sanrio character, was also the inspiration for cafés in Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, and Manila.
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