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Aeon Kasaï Shopping Center in Tokyo: a paradise for Japanese seniors

Céline Delacharlerie
2 minutes

Aeon Kasaï Shopping Center in Tokyo has opened a floor dedicated to seniors with special activities and features for an aging Japanese population.

The Japanese population has a very large elderly population. To be more precise, the population aged 70 and over will continue to grow from 24.32 million in 2016 to 31.59 million in 2050, as life expectancy increases.

Within a radius of 2 kilometers around the center Kasaï, 44% of the population is between 65 and 74 years. In 2013, the retail giant Aeon decided to transform the fourth floor of its Kasaï shopping centre, located in Tokyo, to accommodate the elderly. In 2016, the centre installed a 180-metre walking track. Aeon has set a target of 100 retail outlets designed specifically to meet the needs of senior consumers by 2025. Each month, about 50,000 seniors visit the shopping centre and spend time there. This figure continues to grow: between 2017 and 2018, the number of visitors increased by 10%.

A special feature of this shopping centre is its opening time. Most of the centres open between nine and ten o’clock while Kasaï opens at seven o’clock in the morning because seniors tend to get up early. The proposed activities are numerous and take place from the morning: gym classes, yoga classes, game rooms, sports machines, massage chairs… There is also a supermarket on this floor which makes shopping easier for seniors by selling products designed for them.

Why go to Aeon Kasai Mall?

Participate in gym classes

Every day, at seven and a half in the morning, a specialized gym class for seniors takes place in the mall. This course is free for all seniors. Stretching and warm-ups are part of the program so seniors can stay fit. In addition, yoga classes are also available as well as various gym classes to offer various sports activities.

Having fun in the activity rooms

The shopping centre has set up playrooms where seniors can have fun. The games offered are board games. In this room, the majority of players play Go, the equivalent of chess in Japan. Seniors, especially men, gather and play Go for fun.

Shopping in specialized stores for seniors

In order to attract even more seniors, the mall has decided to turn shops into shops for the elderly. The items sold are suitable products for seniors. For example, the sports department mainly sells knee pads and other support products to prevent injuries during sports sessions. When it comes to shopping, clothes and shoes are also suitable for seniors.

Walk around a 180-meters track

Walking is a sports activity that is very popular with the elderly: it does not require a lot of effort but is enough to stay in shape. The shopping center has set up a 180-meters walking track. This track is one of the most popular attractions. Thanks to this facility, seniors can walk even if it rains, gets too hot or snow outside.

Shopping in a supermarket dedicated to seniors

A supermarket dedicated to the elderly allows them to shop in a quiet environment. The products sold are also specialized for them. For example, take-out meals are available and these dishes are less salty and fat than those found in conventional supermarkets. Their serving size is also suitable for the elderly. Moreover, cadis are lighter and more manageable than normal cadis.

Spending time in a rehabilitation centre

The mall also has a centre offering physiotherapy and other rehabilitation services for the elderly. Sports machines and massage chairs are also available. Thanks to this rehabilitation centre, even seniors who cannot participate in the most intense sports activities are welcome.

Céline Delacharlerie
Celine is the correspondent of the Echangeur in China. On the lookout for retail innovations, she identifies and analyzes the latest retail and consumer trends in Asia.
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