With a vision to serve "the perfect cup of coffee”, %Arabica is set for world domination.
Founded in 2013 by Japanese entrepreneur Kenneth Shoji, %Arabica has expanded its footprint across Asia, Europe, and Africa in just seven years. So far, the company has 61 stores in 14 countries and more to come. Shoji had developed a passion for design, travel, and architecture at a young age, when he accompanied his father on his many business trips as a child.
Shoji's love for coffee was born while studying at the University of California, Los Angeles, in the early '90s, when Starbucks took off and forever changed the face of coffee.
This passion for coffee led him to train as a barista, and later in purchasing a coffee farm in Kona, Hawaii, where he started trading green beans from around the world and became the sole exporter and distributor of a Japanese roasting machine and one of the best espresso machines in the world.
He became a world champion of latte art with the help of Junichi Yamaguchi, whom he persuaded to join him in Tokyo as head barista at %Arabica.
Sitting in a corner spot, the Kennedy Town branch boasts concrete benches outside that look out onto the harbour and parts of Kowloon, a perfect place to chill and soak up the laidback coastal village vibes.
The stores all have the same minimalist design aesthetic. Walls are clad starkly in white with a contrasting natural wood. Bags of %Arabica coffee beans are displayed proudly in glass shelves, alongside their highly stylised %Arabica product range, and state-of-the-art coffee-making machinery.
Uncluttered and sleek, the shop has no disordered furniture nor unnecessary Bric-à-Brac. Much like its menu, which offers unadulterated coffee without any snacks.
Address: Shop 4, Grand Fortune Mansion, No. 1 Davis St, Kennedy Town, Hong Kong.
Image Credit: ACID+ ANJI CONNELL
Anji Connell is an interior architect, garden designer and self-proclaimed nomad who regularly writes about art, design, lifestyle and travel from her globe-trotting adventures. Known for her bubbly persona and even more exuberant sense of style, Anji's portfolio spans everything from interior styling to furniture and landscape design for some of the world's most beautiful spaces. For now, you will find her