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Variety is the spice of Japan’s sex industry

Spa! Feb. 6
Spa! Feb. 6

For first-time visitors to Tokyo, Osaka or any other big city in Japan, perhaps one of the more surprising discoveries is the large number of commercial sex (fuzoku) establishments located in the open and around major train stations.

But, explains weekly tabloid Spa! (Feb. 6), real satisfaction is to be found outside of large metropolitan areas in locations where the number of businesses to choose from is higher in a relative sense.

“When it comes to fulfillment, variety afforded by a wide selection of establishments becomes important,” says Hayato Tanden, the editor of monthly sex guide Manzoku.

One way of assessing what constitutes “wide selection” is to view the number of fuzoku businesses — including soapland bathhouses and so-called “delivery health” services — in a particular area on a per capita basis, meaning a little number crunching is in order.

According to the National Police Agency, the most soapland bathhouses, where full sex is provided on the premises by a masseuse, are located in Tokyo, which has 197. Ranking second and third are Fukuoka (153) and Kanagawa (105) prefectures. Meanwhile, for delivery health establishments — whereby a customer requests a female employee to be dispatched to his hotel — Tokyo again sits at the top with 3,141. Osaka (1,756) and Fukuoka (1,182) prefectures rank second and third, respectively.

However, a different picture develops when the the regions are ranked per 100,000 people. Kumamoto Prefecture tops the list with 9.8 soapland bathhouses per 100,000 persons. Coming in second through fifth are Okinawa (7.6), Fukuoka (6.3), Gifu (5.9) and Shiga (5.7) prefectures, respectively. For delivery health businesses, which dispatch female employees to customers at hotels, the rankings from one to five are as follows: Oita (69), Kagawa (60), Kagoshima (56), Miyazaki (53) and Tokushima (51).

Kumamoto gets a thumbs up

In Tanden’s experience, real diversification can be found within areas topping the latter list since the greatest number of establishments exists relative to the population.

From a personal perspective, he rates Kumamoto Prefecture at the top overall “due to its large number of high-end soapland bathhouses.”

The editor picks Miyagi Prefecture at number two. “The Kokubuncho area, located in the big Sendai City, offers a lot of soaplands and pin saro [pink salon] parlors to go along with numerous cheap love hotels to choose from,” he says.

But don’t forget Chiba Prefecture. “There are numerous options available in Matsudo, Kashiwa, Funabashi and Kisarazu cities, and don’t forget Chiba City, where the Sakaecho area has the very interesting Tenshukaku Soapand district,” assures the editor.