A couple of summers ago, a boba tea-themed pop-up called The Boba Room opened in New York's Bowery neighborhood, promising an Instagram-worthy experience, a rotating selection of boba teas, and "a celebration of the culture that produced it."
What it actually delivered was disappointment. If its 1.5-star Yelp rating is anything to go on, visitors felt let down by the ticket price, by the size of the installation—it was literally a room—and the fact that it was pretty much just a bunch of smudged-looking balloons and partially deflated inflatables. "To echo everyone else's sentiments, don't bother coming here," one reviewer wrote. "Save yourself from the frustration, disappointment, and $10 price tag. You'll have more fun going to a McDonald's ball pit and jumping into that."
Don't give up on those oversized boba dreams just yet; apparently a different and possibly more sanitary bubble tea attraction is coming to Tokyo later this summer. According to SoraNews24, Tokyo Tapioca Land will open in a new shopping center near the Harajuku railway station on Tuesday, August 13, and this one says it's going to be the "tapioca land of your dreams." (If you've been to Harajuku, you know that this is the perfect location for Tapioca Land.)
Tokyo Tapioca Land is bigger than a single room, which is good, and suggests that every visitor will be able to "experience tapioca with your whole body," which is slightly unnecessary. (The last person to "experience tapioca with her whole body" was probably the constipated teen who had a boba-related intestinal blockage.) Anyway, visitors can still sample tapioca foods and drinks, take some kind of as-yet-undetermined tapioca ride, and yes, there will be at least 10 photo booths for your hashtagging pleasure. "We offer various attractions, such as collaborations with celebrity store managers and a Tapioca tour," the event organizers said in a press release.
Tokyo Tapioca Land will be open seven days a week through Monday, September 16, and if you have your heart set on a full-body boba experience, then it's probably best if you score a ¥1000 ($9.30) ticket in advance. If you can't make it to Japan—or you can't get a ticket—then you'll have to close your eyes, take a sip of your fave boba tea, and dive right in to that McDonald's PlayPlace.