Just outside Wellington in New Zealand, you will now find the best cat cafe ever. Neko Ngeru is located on Jackson Street, Petone, a retail thoroughfare of unique style and confidence. Local boutiques rub shoulders with a wide variety of restaurants and one totally special coffee cafe.
Why Neko-Ngeru you ask? It seems a strange combination of words. Actually no. Neko is Japanese for cat, Ngeru is Maori for cat. The cafe is in New Zealand which is home to the Maori nation, and proprietor Ken Okada is Japanese. Both he and his wife Richelle (from the USA) felt they should honour cats and their adopted country. Now the name makes sense!
Join me for an exciting inside peek and watch the dream unfold at the Neko-Ngeru Cat Adoption Cafe on Jackson Street, Petone near Wellington, New Zealand.
Why a Wellington Cat Cafe?
Some people live in rented accommodation and landlords are reluctant to allow cats. Others are apartment dwellers who don’t feel they have enough room for a cat to play. For these people, a cat cafe is the perfect place to get their ‘kitty fix’.
It’s also a haven for visitors missing their fur families at home, and for those who love cats but have allergies. Many ‘allergic’ people can often tolerate a short snuggle period with cats.
Where is the Cat Cafe?
You can’t miss Neko-Ngeru Cat Adoption Cafe at 291 Jackson Street, Petone. It has a friendly awning of red and white stripes, and their distinctive graphic over the big window. The main focus of the cafe will be delicious food, friendly company and the adoption of local cats into the communities of Wellington and the Hutt Valley. All the cats come from local rescues.
The cat cafe layout is spacious and comfortable for human visitors with plenty of high perch points for snoozing felines, and lower cuddle opportunities for cat fans.
Meet the owners of the Wellington Cat Cafe
Owners Richelle and Ken Okada, both international teachers, have travelled the world. They fell in love with New Zealand on their trips here. It is, they decided, the best place to put down roots.
As the couple both love cats and enjoyed the cat cafes they visited worldwide, the idea of a cafe with a strong adoption focus was born.
Treats at Neko-Ngeru Cat Adoption Cafe include:
- The gorgeous cat playroom with handcrafted cat furniture by The Valley Craftsman
- There is delicious coffee from Revive
- Gorgeous biscuits from Tom
- Dazzling hand-painted murals by local artists. (see the video!)
- Delicious handmade sandwiches and sushi.
- Gorgeous ‘hard to find’ cat-themed gifts including special imports from Japan!
- Gorgeous black cats like these.
Customers can come and pay for an hour or half an hour’s access to the cat playroom. They can relax and enjoy the wonderful refreshments on offer.
Neko-Ngeru Walkthrough by Richelle Okada.
The Cat Adoptions Process
For adoptions, the cafe offers the opportunity to meet cats that have been well socialised at the cafe. The cats available for adoption are confident and happy. There is a home check visit for every adoption and the process is explained to
Cats are microchipped, vaccinated and neutered, and all ready to meet potential adopters. Some cats are noted as ‘apprentices’ and these are new arrivals. To find out more about a particular cat, staff members will be happy to make introductions for you and tell you a little about their personality and history.
A NEW 2019 Video from the Cat Cafe
I have created a new video for 2019 of the cat cafe. You can see enhancements to the kitty parkour and the ambience is as warm and friendly as ever.
Don’t forget to book ahead if you can, especially at the weekends!