[ Valentine’s Day in Japan ]
Since the middle ages it has been the traditional day on which lovers express their love for each other through the sending of cards, flowers, and confectionary. After Christmas it is the second largest card-sending day of the year in the West.
The history of Valentine’s in Japan dates back to the post-war recovery era. One of the first valentine’s sales was by the Isetan Department Store in 1958; customers could purchase a special valentine’s set of 3 chocolates and a card for 170 Yen. Since then the tradition of Valentine’s has grown and grown, and now accounts for a quarter of Japan’s yearly chocolate sales.
Thanks to a concentrated marketing effort, Valentine’s Day has become a day on which women in Japan give chocolates or other types of confectionary to men they like. There are 2 types of valentine’s gift a woman can give. Giri-choko (義理チョコ), from the words giri (obligation) and choco (chocolate), are given to male co-workers sometimes at significant personal expense. Honmei-choko (本命チョコ) is given to boyfriends, husbands, & close male colleagues.
On Valentine’s Day in Japan, women give gifts to men; on White Day, men who received chocolate on Valentine’s Day return the favor and give gifts to women. White Day, on March 14 is a truly ‘Made in Japan’ manufactured tradition that was started by a Fukuoka marshmallow manufacturer and the Iwataya Department Store in 1977. The white marshmallows gave the day its name but other kinds of presents, including chocolates and cookies, have become more popular as the tradition spread nationwide.
(Nagoya International Center)
Love Illuminations 2011
[ LOVEイルミネーション2011 ]
A romantic Valentine’s Day and White Day getaway in the heart of Nagoya. Cherry blossoms will be in full bloom in the Orchid Gardens’ indoor atrium.
+ When: Late January until March 22 (10:00 – 22:00); closed on Wednesdays.
+ Where: Nagoya Orchid Gardensランの館
+ Admission: Adults 700 Yen, 500 Yen after 17:00. Under 15s free.
+ Access: A 3 minute walk south from Yaba-cho Subway Station, exit 4.
(NIC Event Information)