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Tuesday, Dec. 27, 2005

LIFELINES

Real estate, a good cigar and body wax


Property in Yokohama

Shirley, in Monterey, Calif., found an interesting article on buying property in Japan while browsing on the Web, and had a question.

"I live in the U.S., but own some property in Yokohama, received as an inheritance from a family member. I do not speak Japanese, and I am seeking an English-speaking individual or company in Japan to help me understand Japan's rental and property ownership laws, so that I can properly decide how to manage or sell the property. I am trying to determine what the best options are for this rather old residential property, whether to continue renting it, or sell it to either existing tenants, or to new buyers or developers.

I need to learn about the tenant lease laws, zoning laws, and explore different options for selling off the property if it turns out to not be viable to continue to keep it as rental property."

Shirley wonders if we know a bilingual real estate, rental agency, or lawyer who might be useful as contacts to consult.

The most famous real estate company in Yokohama serving the foreign community is Zee Brothers: www.zeebrothers.com email: wayne@zbhomes.com

Zee Brothers are specialists in rental, but know many of the long-term gaijin landlords, who occasionally come to them for help in selling, so they have a good feel for the local market and use a network of property contacts who help with sales.

More cigars

Also in Yokohama, J.B. is looking for a cigar shop.

"I'm currently staying at the Yokohama Bay Sheraton and would like to find a supplier near the hotel."

We have given some ideas recently for Kansai; seems Kanto is now up for attention.

Maybe readers have favorite specialist outlets?

In the meantime, let's begin with two cigar clubs in Tokyo, plus a club that claims to be a shop. Very confusing.

There is a cigar bar on the 7th floor of the Marunouchi Hotel in Chiyoda Ward. Phone (03) 3215-5555.

Cigar Club Ltd is on the 1st floor of the Westin Hotel in Meguro Ward (03) 5449-8477.

The store Cigar Club Conrad Tokyo is on the 28th floor of the Conrad Tokyo Building in Shinbashi (030 3572-1980.

Waxing

S.C. notes that permanent hair removal is popular in Japan, but is looking for "a good ol' waxing" for removal of unwanted hair.

"I want to know of beauty parlours/salons in Tokyo where they provide reasonably priced waxing services for women."

Why not give Boudoir Day Spa in Harajuku, which offers a wide range of beauty services, a whirl.

Australian owned and operated, Boudoir has been servicing the ex-pat and foreign community in Tokyo for the past seven years.

With Australian and Japanese therapists (10 per cent of customers are Japanese), Boudoir promises no language barriers, misunderstandings, or any other hassles.

With appointments by reservation only, the spa is open Mon -- Fri, 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Sat 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Address: Maison Kawai 101, 2-25-3 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-000. Phone/Fax: (03) 3478-5898.

Map and directions: gmap.jp/shop-1082.html Web site: www.boudoirtokyo.com (note that a new Web site is under construction.)

A staff members said, "Waxing costs upwards from 2,825 yen for removal of hair on chin, lip or neck, to 9,975 yen for a full arm."

Note that Boudoir sells gift vouchers for treatments. Great idea for a New Year makeover.

Feeling alone

Should you have any problems with mind, body or spirit over the Christmas and New Year period, call TELL (Tokyo English Life Line) on (03) 5774-0992.

Free anonymous counseling is available daily from 9 a.m.-11 p.m.



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