Cat cafes originated in Asia and offer tea, coffee, food, and cat cuddling. They are extremely popular in cultures where people might not be able to have a pet themselves, and today there are cat cafes in Europe and Canada as well. Thus far, the US has lagged behind.
New York City saw a pop-up cat cafe earlier this year, but it might be Los Angeles that gets the first permanent installation. The first try starts today and will be open through October 5th 2014.
The cafe partners with no-kill shelter Best Friends Animal Society Los Angeles, and with the Chinatown Business Improvement District. There will be cats available for petting and adoption, costumed butlers, and entertainment.
Hopes are the cat cafe can become a permanent installation, and the plans include space to house homeless cats as well as showing visiting shelter cats seeking new homes. There are also plans to open cat cafes in Portland, San Francisco, and Oakland.
The dreams of a permanent NYC cat cafe might also come to fruition soon – there is currently a crowd funding campaign attempting to raise startup funding.