Author Topic: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo  (Read 933 times)

Akira

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Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« on: August 24, 2020, 10:26:34 »
This August, two long-established second-hand camera shops in Tokyo, Alps-Do in Shinjuku and Nikon House in Ginza, are closed.

Alps-Do has handled all sorts of camera and lenses, from the large format to the minuscule spy camera.  My biggest purchase there was Hasselblad 500C/M and Planar 80/2.8 kit, and I bought some MF Nikkor lenses and various accessories.  The salespersons were very friendly and knowlegeable, and the prices are fair.

Nikon House should be quite popular among some NG members here.  As its name suggests, it was a Nikon expert shop, and both the original manager and his successor were literally Nikon experts.  I bought and sold many Nikon MF (including 105/2.5 and 85/2.0 in L39 mount) and AF lenses and film bodies.  Actually I also bought my first Leica (M4-P) there before the shop changed its name from Sukiya Camera to Nikon House and still handled Leica products.

All the sales persons at Alps-Do salespersons apparently approached their retirement age in the first place, but the general tendencies of the shrinkage of the still camera market and the obvious affect of COVID-19 seems to prompt the closure.

The manager and only sales person of Nikon House also approached his retirement age as well, but the owner of Sukiya Camera has long wanted to close Nikon House since the first manager retired.  The second-hand Nikon bodies and lenses sold at Nikon House were in general very well maintained either by experienced in-house repair persons or by Kiitos (the dedicated Nikon repair shop founded by retired Nikon engineers of the repair department).

In addition, another long-established camera chain called Miyama Shokai was also closed this February.

This is a very sad news.
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bobfriedman

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2020, 16:15:08 »
I believe I have been in some of those shops with you Akira.. I have been in Nikon House many times and found it a wonderful place.. it is too bad that the return on investment is not there for the next generation to take over those shops. I would imagine a lot of that merchandise will move to on-line sales such as ebay.
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longzoom

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2020, 16:18:01 »
It is a terrible task to watch the quintessence of centuries of humanity great efforts - the camera industry - is dying...

Airy

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2020, 21:54:20 »
Very sorry about the Nikon House, where I bought my 180/2.8 AIS and 500/8 N...
I might still have a shot of the tourist-repelling leaflet (in English) they sticked to the entrance door...
Airy Magnien

Airy

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2020, 22:00:26 »
... could not find it, but here's the most recent one - October 2019
Airy Magnien

Akira

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2020, 09:43:12 »
I believe I have been in some of those shops with you Akira.. I have been in Nikon House many times and found it a wonderful place.. it is too bad that the return on investment is not there for the next generation to take over those shops. I would imagine a lot of that merchandise will move to on-line sales such as ebay.

Yes, we had gone there together, possibly the last time we met in Tokyo, before I came up the idea of "Brief but... NG meeting" series of threads in the "Travel Diaries" section here in NG.  And your assumption is right: you can find many Japanese sellers of MF lenses on ebay now.


It is a terrible task to watch the quintessence of centuries of humanity great efforts - the camera industry - is dying...

Indeed, and the cameras and lenses they handled was produced during the prime time of the film era...


Very sorry about the Nikon House, where I bought my 180/2.8 AIS and 500/8 N...
I might still have a shot of the tourist-repelling leaflet (in English) they sticked to the entrance door...

I remember your image of the notorious sign elsewhere in this forum.  That was a shame...   During the last phase of Nikon House, the manager changed the name of the shop from "Nikon House" to "れんず コーナー" (read: Lens Corner), possibly in order to make the shop difficult to search on the net in foreign languages.  Really sad...
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Erik Lund

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2020, 13:56:00 »
Thank you for keeping us informed! Very sad news indeed.
Erik Lund

Akira

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2020, 14:50:16 »
Thank you for keeping us informed! Very sad news indeed.

You are welcome, Erik.  There still are good second-hand shops, but the closure of the well established shops is really sad.
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Airy

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2020, 14:53:49 »
The trouble is, the Nikon House was more than a shop : a museum at the same time (what lens did they NOT have ?), and some may say... a temple.
Airy Magnien

Akira

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2020, 15:01:02 »
The trouble is, the Nikon House was more than a shop : a museum at the same time (what lens did they NOT have ?), and some may say... a temple.

Indeed, yes, and the items were in perfectly working condition.
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Airy

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2020, 15:12:31 »
I remember your image of the notorious sign elsewhere in this forum.  That was a shame...   During the last phase of Nikon House, the manager changed the name of the shop from "Nikon House" to "れんず コーナー" (read: Lens Corner), possibly in order to make the shop difficult to search on the net in foreign languages.  Really sad...

Found it - in the thread about our encounter in Tokyo, Oct. 2018, from page 2 https://nikongear.net/revival/index.php?topic=8000.15.
Airy Magnien

Akira

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2020, 15:26:33 »
Found it - in the thread about our encounter in Tokyo, Oct. 2018, from page 2 https://nikongear.net/revival/index.php?topic=8000.15.

 :'(
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bobfriedman

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2020, 16:54:53 »
I don't remember that sign.. but I think the last time was there was 2010/11 or so.
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Akira

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2020, 05:33:02 »
I don't remember that sign.. but I think the last time was there was 2010/11 or so.

I think it was not until a couple of years ago that the sign first appeared.
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PeterN

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Re: Closure of long-established shops in Tokyo
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2020, 11:05:30 »
It is sad that expert shops go out of business. Without a strong internet business it is difficult to survive. There is much to like about the internet business (convenience, compare options, etc) but the one thing I don't like about it is that the personal touch is gone and that sales targets are more important than customer service. Let's hope that great shops will find a way to combine the online internet business with local in-store service.
Peter