Pikachu and his friends are incredibly popular in Japan and will now see if their popularity is as big in Europe. Les Halles, in Paris, will house a Pokémon pop-up store until 21 June.
Pikachu loves France
The reason why Nintendo has chosen Paris as the location for its pop-up store can be found in its most recent versions of the Pokémon-games (X and Y). The games came out in October 2013 and were focused on beauty, inspired by France.
"We have been aware from the start that France is open to Japanese culture and because this is our first European boutique, we wanted as many people as people to see it. As Paris is the most-visited capital on the continent, it was an easy choice for us", Junichi Masuda (Pokémon producer and director) said. He also hopes permanent Pokémon Centers will come to Europe, but that won't happen anytime soon.
The Parisian pop-up store will only sell a limited offer of the huge number of gadgets and merchandise available, especially compared to the Japanese Pokémon Centers which are huge supermarkets. The very first Pokémon Center opened in 1998 in Tokyo, but Japan currently has 8 Pokémon Centers.
It took until 2001 before one opened abroad, in New York, but it was not a huge success as in 2005 it was transformed into a general Nintendo store geared toward video games.
The Parisian pop-up store will be there until 21 June, based on the corner of rue des Halles and rue des Déchargeurs.