Seibu Fukui (西武福井) is well known locally and a symbol of the prefecture. People in Fukui go to the department store on special occasions. It’s the only department store in Fukui, and it has about a 90-year history.
Department stores are large outlets that sell high-quality daily necessities including food and clothes. There are only about 200 department stores in Japan. I might be wrong, but I think department stores sell expensive and high-quality products, while shopping centers sell cheaper items. When you go to a department store, you have to wear appropriate clothing.
Darumaya (だるま屋), which was the predecessor of Seibu Fukui, opened in 1928 and was the first department store in the prefecture. The store managed a girls’ opera company from 1931 to 1936, and customers enjoyed watching dancing and singing at the store.
Seibu Fukui is an eight-story building with about 130 shops. In 2021, a restaurant floor was opened on the eighth floor. The department store has an English website where you can find opening times, event information, and floor guides.
I’ll briefly describe each floor.
In the basement, there are food shops where you can buy bread, fruit, drinks, meat, sushi, and so on.
On the first floor, there are shops that sell cosmetics, bags and Japanese sweets.
On the second floor, there are shops that sell men’s clothing.
On the third and fourth floors, there are shops that sell women’s clothing.
On the fifth floor, there are shops that sell jewelry, watches, towels and cups.
On the sixth floor, there are shops that sell health and fitness products, snacks, chopsticks and stationery. This floor is exciting and you can see a lot of different kinds of products there. I think you’ll love it.
On the seventh floor of the department store, there are a bookstore and a toy store. All of the books in the bookstore are Japanese. At the toy store, there are card sets, dolls, and miniature cars.
On the eighth floor, there are eight restaurants where you can have grilled meat, sushi, soba, Italian food, and Japanese food. You can also eat Echizen crab (gani) there.
Seibu Fukui has about 130 shops. Even if you don’t buy anything, you’ll enjoy seeing a lot of different kinds of products there. The department store is close to JR Fukui Station, so if you come to Fukui, you ought to go to Seibu. You’ll definitely discover something new there.
＜Seibu Fukui Information＞
Open: 10 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. (Restaurants on the 8th floor are open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.) 365 days a year
Location: a five-minute walk from JR Fukui Station
English website: https://www.sogo-seibu.jp.e.ld.hp.transer.com/fukui/