In Osaka, Japan, few words strike more terror into the heart of a party-goer than last train. It’s just not fair; a city aswim with brilliant nightlife – boozy izakayas, raucous clubs, cozy-but-gritty shot bars, throbbing karaoke houses – and, yet, the trains shut down from roughly midnight to 6 in the morning. Pay 3000 yen (~36 USD) for a 15-minute cab ride home? For-freaking-get it. If you can’t find a friend to give you a lift, your options become 1) shut the party down at midnight (lame) or 2) stay out until first train.
Luckily, Osaka is also full of establishments that stay open until dawn to get you through those rough wee morning hours. Should you find yourself in need of friendly shelter, tripwolf suggests heading to Kama Sutra; a karaoke bar and shisha joint all in one.
Kama Sutra is owned by husband-and-wife team Richard and Hiromi Luke who opened the space as a shot bar in February of 2005. Why the sexy name? “The wife and I sat down with a bottle of whiskey one night trying to come up with a theme for our new place,” explains Richard Luke. “… don’t know exactly how we got there but we came to the realization that the term Kama Sutra refers not only to the sexual aspect but to anything that appeals to our senses – sight, touch, taste etc.. – and thought, ‘That’s the kind of place we want to make!’”
Case in point:
Kama Sutra Sight: Intimate, cozy, “friendly but sometimes messy,” admits Luke. Sexy red interiors; Indian decor and a selection of cosplay items behind the bar. The colorful clientele ranges from 18 year-old hostesses to 60 year-old salary men, as well as travelers… “but once you are in the door and the karaoke starts we’re all the same!” Indeed, we defy you to resist Luke’s effusive hospitality: British-Canadian Luke has lived in Osaka for over ten years, speaks Osaka dialect with the hurly burly brashness of a local, and makes sure no one ever feels left out.
Kama Sutra Taste: “Mixing up your favorite cocktails, wines, shochu, sake, beer and lots of jager shots!!” Kama Sutra is also planning on reintroducing their original curries. Drinks start from 500 yen.
Kama Sutra Smell: One of the best selections of shisha in town and expanding. 700 yen for a 45 minute smoke, except on free communal shisha nights the last Sunday of every month.
Kama Sutra Sound: Free karaoke (w/ minimum one drink) – unbeatable in a city where a round of karaoke at one of the big chains can cost you upwards of 1000 yen per person. “We are all singing fools!!” declares Luke. More Kama Sutra sounds: the clinking of glasses, laughter, and the sweet tones of English, as Kama Sutra employs English-speaking staff.
Kama Sutra also hosts regular celebrations: “Western” holidays as well as barbecues, hikes, trips to the onsen, etcetera. Arrive lonely; leave with new friends. Note: tripwolf is not responsible for any unidentified tantric injuries.
What are you waiting for? Here’s where to find the party:
Address: Osaka-shi, Chuo-ku, Higashi Shinsaibashi 2-1-13. Osaka-ya Jumbo Bldg. 5F #5 .
Phone: 06 6211 8885
Website: http://www.kamasutra-osaka.com/ (Japanese and English)
Hours of Operation: 9pm – morning
Been to Kama Sutra in Osaka? Share your comments below!