Meow Parlour, New York’s very first permanent cat café, has finally opened its doors on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
Located at 46 Hester Street, the cafe welcomes the public to come and enjoy some sweet tabbies and treats for as little as $4 per half hour. Co-owner Christina Ha’s Macaron Parlour is conveniently located only a few blocks away and supplies the cafe’s cat loving patrons with freshly baked goodies, delivered directly to Meow Parlour itself.
The Japanese phenomenon has been tried successfully in cities all over the world including Tokyo and Paris. Ms. Ha says she and business partner Emily Legrand wanted to bring the successful model to New York on a permanent basis, after a pop up cat café was opened in the city last spring.
“If I want it, I know someone else will too, so we did an informal poll and people were into it so we just decided to do it”, she said.
Since Meow Parlour opened its doors in mid-December, the cafe has received an overwhelming response and is currently fully booked until April. Ms. Ha says her and Ms. Legrand are thrilled by the support the venture has received from the community.
“There has been a lot of interest and a lot of people have been super nice about everything and very excited for us. It has been hard that we haven’t been able to accommodate everyone who wants to come in, and it has been difficult managing everything as we are essentially a first for something like this, but it has been exciting, a lot of people have been very happy”, she said.
Meow Parlour is far more than just cookies and cats, partnering with cat rescue and adoption agency Kitty Kind to enable visitors to adopt their favorite feline friend. Ms. Ha says it is rewarding to help such special cats gain exposure and find a forever home.
“There are a lot of cats out there that need a home. There are a lot of wonderful cats out there and they all have stories for how they ended up at shelters and they really desperately need homes. There are a lot of animals that could really benefit from getting adopted”.
An honorary match making service, Meow Parlour has been the catalyst for several love stories, AKA adoptions. Ms. Ha says it is exciting to be a mid point in the process.
“It was important for us when we were going to do a cat cafe that the cats would be adoptable and that we would be able to help cats find another home. We are an in between foster home on their way to another home and it has been amazing to be part of that process”, she said.
Meow Parlour is currently open from 11am till 8pm Thursday through Tuesday, and unlike many other cat cafes, they do cater to groups that have children.
“We try not to exclude any age groups, we do have special hours for groups that have children that are ten and under so that we can provide a little bit of extra supervision”.
So if you would like some kitty with your cookie, make sure you book well in advance for your Meow Parlour Experience!
Connect with Meow Parlour on Twitter and Instagram with @MeowParlour
– By Lizzie Crittenden