Proposal of the “Third Place” after retirement
The “third place” is a term, firstly used by Ray Oldenburg in his book “The Great Good Place”. This famous urban sociologist pointed out that the third place has an important function in the society, apart from the two environments of home (the first place) and the workplace (the second place).
A visit to Mather Café Plus in Chicago, the USA gave me an insight. I developed Oldenburg’s concept and proposed to create the “third place for retirees” nationwide Japan.
“The Third Place” for the Retired Older Adults
Monthly Magazine Leisure Industry Data, May 2003
Mather Café Plus, a Starbucks for Older Adults Who Do Not Feel Old At All. - Monthly Magazine Business Data, May 2003
My concept of the “third place for retirees” had a huge reaction. Quite a few people have incorporated this concept into their own businesses. For example, Club Tourism International Inc. has been developing its own cafés called Club Tourism Café. Proto Corporation has started a salon for older adults called “Yuyu Chiteki (Leisurely Intellectual)”. And there are many community cafés around the country that seem to have adopted the concept of the “third place for retirees”.
As I have stated in my book “Senior Business: Ten Successful Strategies for a Diverse Market”, a café is not the only form to create the “third place for retirees”. The essence of the “third place” is a social community that one can belong to, when one no longer has a place to go every day. Even now, more diverse projects to create the “third place” are expected to emerge in the market.