August 27, 2004

Article at Wall Street Journal

The Card: Cat Society (Hong Kong)

Picture an ideal dining experience, and what probably doesn't come to mind is tattered furniture, stray hairs in your food and small furry creatures skittering between your legs. But that's what you get at the Cat Store cafe in Hong Kong's bustling Causeway Bay. That and more.

The food? Mediocre at best. (Would you like your creamy salmon sauce over rice or pasta?) The service? Fickle like a feline. The clientele? Teenagers in expensively ratty clothing, mostly. But ah, the company.

If you love cats, get thee to the Cat Store, quick. They're everywhere in this joint: lounging on chairs, wrestling in a corner, snoozing in a nook. Spoiled, too, because this place is usually packed with cat-lovers vying for their attention. The crowds are such that it's best to reserve a table ahead of time: ask for one of the couches, lest you get stuck on a floor cushion.

The decor is charmingly awful: chipped disco balls, battered filing cabinets crammed full of unlikely old books and board games with missing pieces, as well as an old wooden-framed TV. It's a bit like eating in a flea market, chock full of cats. Like that? It takes a certain type. Next to the cafe is a store selling cat-themed knick-knacks.

Cat Store cafe, Shop 1, 1/F, 2-4 Kingston St., Causeway Bay, Hong Kong; open daily, noon to 11 p.m. (until midnight Friday and Saturday, 10 p.m. Sunday). Tel: 852-2710-9953. Web:

(c) 2004 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.