Have you ever wanted to use a toilet surrounded by glass walls and ceiling, centered in a 200 square meter flower garden? No? Well, you might want to reconsider, because you can do just that in Japan’s city of Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture. Just as every major city has its own tourist landmark, like New York’s Statue of Liberty, Paris’ Eiffel Tower, and now Tokyo, with its new record-setting Skytree tower, Ichihara has an attraction of its own.
The small, little-known city near Tokyo specifically wanted something to attract tourism, and to that, they decided on making the world’s largest toilet. Located a short walk from one of the city’s train stations, the “stall” was designed by architect Sou Fujimoto, and is nothing short of a 200 square meter (that’s over 2,000 square feet!) fenced-in space, landscaped with rows of flower boxes. The actual toilet bowl is contained in a tall glass box, that allows guests to observe the nature around them, and the sky above. Should you still feel insecure, there is curtain inside the box that can be drawn, and the door has a second lock inside. The first lock is actually on the entrance of the outer fence!
Eichi Kirikae, with the Ichihara tourism department, says that part of the goal to increase tourism is to welcome guests with clean toilets. As the city is small, and doesn’t have anything like amusement parks or other attractions, Kirikae says the only visitors they see are a couple dozen photographers who come to see the seasonal changes. So, when it came time to update the toilet, they decided to go all the way and make an attraction out of it. The operating costs for the luxurious outhouse comes to 9.87 million yen (approx. $126,000) per year. If you haven’t booked your tickets to get to Ichihara already, you’ll want to hold on for just one more piece of news. The record-setting lavatory is only for women, leaving us heart-broken gentlemen to look elsewhere for glass boxes to do our business in.
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