First week in Tainan my previous Chinese teacher gave up a cultural presentation on some of Taiwan’s popular culture and that’s when I was first introduced to the concept of a toilet restaurant. I read about it in a few blogs around Taiwan, like the latest interesting Wasai project, but didn’t have a chance to actually visit one myself. Till today.
It’s a well-put well-decorated gimmick, but I’m afraid the one I found in Tainan – the Modern Toilet chain – isn’t as popular as its Tai-zhong and Tai-Bei older more-original brothers. The theme is simple – toilets. The toilet seat, toilet paper, poop, and the likes are spread all over the restaurant in either accessories or menu items. Here’s how the Kim Cusick from Wasai explains it :
But Taiwan has taken novelty restaurants to a whole new level. Welcome to Marton, the world’s first toilet themed restaurant! Marton means toilet in Chinese and in this restaurant you literally sit on toilet seats and eat out of miniature toilet shaped bowls (both the Asian squat-style and the traditional Western variety toilets).
The restaurant is the first of its kind and only exists in Taiwan. The creator of the restaurant used to be a street vendor. He sold ice-cream in a special plastic toilet cup holder which he designed himself. He decided to take this idea one step further and so the toilet restaurant was born. The restaurants use ceramic toilet bowls/dishes to serve a range of meals. Apparently he was inspired by a comic book character who would put crap on crackers. No joke! This comic is popular with the young kids in Taiwan!
So, if you’re in Tainan, head over to Lin-San road (林森) just across the street from the big sports center, and check out the local branch. I think I’ve also seen one in one of YongKang’s bigger streets. Here’s what it looks like :
Want to learn some more, here’s a Yahoo lifestyle video showing a bit more :