Sue quit her job in 2013 from the financial industry to run the Neko No Niwa Cat Cafe full time. Sam still has his full time job but is actively involved in cafe operations as well as conducting Cat Care Workshops. Husband and wife have three rescue cats of their own at home.
About the cafe:
Sue and Sam felt that cats in Singapore were misunderstood. Many peoples' experiences with cats are limited to stray cats in their neighborhoods. Cats are often labelled dirty, noisy, smelly, and aloof. The couple started the first cat café in Singapore in 2013, wanting to change all the misconceptions about cats and to raise awareness for adoption. All 13 of the café's cats are rescues and the goal is to help people to see how beautiful and affectionate cats can be when they are given a second chance in life.
Besides providing a platform for cat therapy, Neko No Niwa also strives to be a resource and educational center. The cafe has been conducting quarterly Cat Care Workshops since 2014 (that are recognized by SPCA) to share knowledge and experience with current and potential cat owners. Sue and Sam also work with social enterprises for the merchandise stocked at the cafe - part of the sales proceeds are given back to community cats or animal welfare groups.
Neko No Niwa is a cosy space for 13 rescues cats and visitors. There are several cubby holes and resting spots for the kitties and they generally love to be sunning by the large windows that face the Singapore River. Visitors have the choice of reading a book, playing board games in the library corner, hanging out with the kitties by the windows, or just relaxing on sofas to soak in all the cat therapy. A selection of tea, coffee, and gourmet desserts can be ordered to complete the experience.
As a small business, the cafe is at the mercy of rent and other operating expenses. Unfortunately, a cat café is not an easily scalable business. Sue and Sam choose to keep to their 13 café cats rather than adding more because they want to maintain the high quality of care for each of them.
How to visit:
Walk-ins can be accommodated, but it's best to call ahead because the cafe closes at times for private events.
Hours of Operation:
Mon, Wed to Fri: 11am to 10pm
Sat & Sun: 10am to 10pm
Closed on Tuesdays
How you can help:
Please drop in for a visit when you are in the area! Visit the cafe's official website. Please also follow Neko No Niwa on Facebook and Instagram. The cafe regularly posts about cats looking for a home.