Starbucks opens its first LEED registered store in Japan

On May 26, 2010, Starbucks announced the opening its first store to be LEED registered  in Japan, located in Ohori Park.  I’ve heard from a number of people that the store actually first opened on April 26, 2010.  The official My Starbucks Idea blogs have a good blog entry explaining what LEED certification is, so I recommend that my readers drop by that blog post and read it over:

Though no interior pics are available, I have a few exterior photos of this store, and it’s so visually interesting that’s it’s definitely worth sharing with all of you.  I owe a big thank you to Noboru Sakamoto who generously gave me permission to post these photos on this blog.  He is the copyright holder of all photos used in this blog post.  On Memorial Day this year I got the chance to meet Noboru Sakamoto in person, and I also recommend following him on twitter too!   He tweets as @Nobrice.

In late 2009, Starbucks announced its participation with the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Volume Certification pilot program.  The strategy with the pilot program involved Starbucks constructing or remodeling a minimum of 10 pilot stores in six different bioregions around the world.  Once the pilot stores’ environmental strategies are audited and approved, they can be replicated elsewhere.

This store in Fukuoka, Ohori Park, Japan is part of that continuing development of the initial LEED pilot stores.  Starbucks has opened previous pilot stores in London (Conduit Street store), Seattle (Roy Street Coffee and Tea), a remodeled store in New York City (72 Spring Street Starbucks in Soho), Paris, France (Disney Village Starbucks),  Madrid, Spain (The Palace Hotel Starbucks), and I believe Washington D.C., also.  I don’t have a complete list of all the LEED pilot stores, unfortunately.  If anyone has that information, please let me know – I would love to have a list of all ten stores, if only to be as accurate as possible describing all the LEED pilot stores.  I have heard that the first of the LEED pilot program stores actually opened in San Diego, but I have no idea which store.  If any knows, please let me know!

My understanding is that this beautiful new store has two Mastrena espresso machines.

What do you think of Starbucks partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council and these new store designs?  I have had two other blog posts on “repurposed” store design that I want to revisit for a moment – I previously wrote about new stores opening up and remodels which use green materials, though are NOT part of the LEED registration process.  Click here for that blog entry, which focuses on a Starbucks at Pier 55 in Seattle, and in Bellevue Square, in Bellevue, Washington.  I previously wrote about Roy Street when their store opened new in November 2009:  This blog entry here has some photos of the Roy Street store which is LEED registered and part of the pilot program.

Without further side chatter, let’s take a trip to the Ohari Park, and visit this new store.  It’ll be like a walk in the park, and admiring a gorgeous store from the outside:

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  • Sebastian

    Those LEED Stores are incredible…really beautiful and in my opinion the best stores to feel comfy inside. I visited the London Conduit St Store this year…

    This store in Japan has a reaaaaallly beautiful location….love that water! But I, personally, can’t really cotton up to the design outside. In my opinion the outward appearance of this store is a little bit dull.
    But the inside seems to be as beautiful as it used to be…:D

    Lucky guys at Japan…

  • Nob

    Thank you for the introduction of the Japanese green store on your blog.
    I thank for your excellent article.
    I hand over a copyright of those pics to you. Because the pics of this good scene are nobody’s things.

    Japan is a developed nation, but resources are poor. So, the high promotion of efficiency that the industry does not waste resources is demanded. And recycle. Japan must take significance of LEED.
    Starbucks gave Japan an LEED concept store. Thank you Starbucks. And thank you Melody for an excellent article.
    (I want Starbucks to give a brown logo to the Japanese green store if possible. Like a 1st & Pike, Bellevue Square)

  • Christopher

    This store seems beautiful! I hope that this catches on. In ohio we have a store that isn’t a LEED store but it was redesigned using some of the LEED ideas. The east and west facing windows were tinted dark and a special film was put on them to keep heat and cool inside, an airlock was added when you walk in, the bathroom got an upgrade and a greywater system was added to reuse the water for use in the local community garden. Some really cool stuff to see in action. I would like to see more stores do things like this just because it’s a cool place to sit.

  • LatteRose

    Beautiful! Looks very peaceful. Thank you Nobrice! And great article, Melody!

  • purple1

    I too wish there were more stores in the USA like there are in Japan. Too many of the stores are tired looking and old.

  • Sarah

    Wow! What a cool looking Starbucks! I wish I could visit it, but…I’m in the wrong country. 😉
    I for one love the design. It’s very different from the Starbucks storefronts I’m used to seeing, which is probably one of the reasons I like it so much. Thanks for sharing the pictures!

  • CD

    Now THAT is a Third Place! Wow!

  • AmazonV

    That is such a pretty store. I have been to the NYC LEED store and it is very pretty inside but not as lovely as this one outside.

    thanks @nobrice and Melody for taking us on an international spin!

  • ALN

    Let’s hope this is one of many more to come! It’s beautiful!

  • Slee

    Yay for LEED certified coffee shops, other than the whole I don’t drink coffee part…


    While it may seem dull to many of us on the outside I think a better word would be peaceful and serene would be better. Too bad Starbucks doesn’t have a website dedicated to LEEDS certified stores and future ones.

  • CD

    @BSR – I agree completely. Just looking at those pictures, I’d like to stay there all day. Comfortable. Peaceful. Serene. Looks like a Third Place to me.

  • camspi

    Beautiful! It looks so modern, too. Thanks for the pics, Nob!

  • camspi

    Have you seen the store design section of
    It features some of the stores Melody’s discussed, too, like the 72 Springs, New York store, and the Palace Hotel in Madrid, Spain.

  • Hayley

    Beautiful, I do love that it is so close to the water.

  • Nob

    I heard that news. “Starbucks opens its first store in Budapest, Hungary.”
    The design of the store is a thing by the LEED concept definitely. I think so.
    Starbucks should announce the LEED store map of each country to us. Anybody want to know that.

  • CABarista

    Thank you for always increasing my knowledge melody :) I appreciate it :) By the way, I love your new twitter coffee bird. It makes me happy 😉

  • CABarista

    Oh, and thank YOU Nob for sharing so much with us as well!! I appreciate it!!

  • Jordan

    I think the LEED program is such a brilliant thing and it’s just another thing about this company that makes me so very proud to call myself a partner. This store is going to be a MEGA success, and I kinda hope that store development maybe implement some of the designs of Japanese stores round the world, such as having separate cafe bars and the handoff in the middle. I was a barista there three years ago now and there’s much more emphasis on using the theatre of sbux and romance of coffee to create the third place.

    In any case, fantastic blog article, Melody! I’m probably going back to Japan for vacation later this year…Fukuoka is out of the way, but there is no way I am missing this!

  • Jordan

    And thank you to @nobrice, of course!!

  • ChickenFreak

    Cool! It’s great that they’re green. As a sort of side issue, many Starbucks stores that I’ve seen lately have been starting to look a little “meh”, generic, dull. So distinguishing their stores in both appearance _and_ environmental responsibility is a Good Thing.

  • @sbuckspassion

    Mel, you’ve produced another very insightful and interesting post. This new LEED certified store looks very trendy. I would love to visit it one day. As for your request, I know of one LEED certified store in Ontario. It’s a very nice store located in uptown Toronto. I talked to a store manager who contacted his DM and asked if there were any LEED stores in Ontario; this uptown Toronto store was the one.

    Also, I think this is a great move by Starbucks to LEED certify some stores. The whole campaign definitely moves Starbucks’ CSR initiatives forward. They care for environment and sustainability and with LEED certified stores, they are living up to these commitments.

    Thanks for sharing this post!


  • Brad

    That looks amazing! I really need to check out Fukuoka!

    Here’s hoping the Tokyo stores follow suit!

  • Sebastian

    Germany also gets its first LEED Store next week…July 12 in Dresden, Altmarkt (Saxony).

  • Nathaniel

    Hi Melody! Your blog is looking pretty tip-top!
    I added updates to my twitter to share your passion with my followers.
    Be well!

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