10 Facts About Saizeriya, The Italian Restaurant Chain That Is Actually from Japan

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Everyone should know Saizeriya, the ridiculously-cheap Italian restaurant that is popping up almost everywhere in Singapore.

$3.90 for a plate of pasta or $6.90 for a plate of chicken chop? The free flow drink bar is only $2.80!

Where to find such cheap food and drink in Singapore? Even coffee shops might not be as cheap and Saizeriya is air-conditioned too!

Want to know more about Saizeriya? Let’s find out!

Saizeriya is founded in 1967 and given to the current president of Saizeriya in 1968

Saizeriya was founded in 1967 in Chiba prefecture, Japan as a western restaurant. In 1968, the current president, Yasuhiko Shogaki, took over the helm of the restaurant through inheritance, and began to build the business. As Italian cuisine was popular during that time, the president decided to change the business from a western restaurant to an Italian one. So there you have it: it’s not from Italy. It’s from the Land of the Rising Sun.

Saizeriya has more than 1,000 stores in Japan

You might not have seen the stores in Tokyo, but Saizeriya has plenty of stores in Japan. You can find them almost anywhere – in the train stations, in commercial buildings, in shopping centres, etc. They might be small, and might also be hidden on higher floors of commercial buildings. Interesting to know that Japanese love Italian food so much, eh?

Saizeriya is also established in other parts of Asia

Besides Singapore, Saizeriya is also popular in Taiwan, China and Hongkong. Saizeriya is a household name for many people in Asia as a cheap and good restaurant to go to for a simple meal.

Saizeriya Liang Court is their first outlet in Singapore

For many of us, Saizeriya Liang Court is the first experience we have with this restaurant and we believe that it was a really great experience! The first outlet was clean, big and service was good and fast. The same cannot be said of some of their recent outlets in other parts of Singapore. #justsaying

Saizeriya’s flagship store is at Orchard Gateway

In 2014, Saizeriya opened their first ever flagship store in Orchard Gateway. Situated in a prime location, it has to perform better to satisfy the higher expectations of locals and tourists alike.

Saizeriya is a listed company

Bet you didn’t know that, eh? In 1998, Saizeriya registered its stocks with JASDAQ Securities Exchange and started selling to the general public. In 1999, two stocks are listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

The first overseas store for Saizeriya is in Shanghai

China is the destination of choice for Saizeriya when it first expanded outside of Japan, probably due to its proximity and its huge population. In December 2003, the first oversea stores opened in Shanghai, and the expansion continues until today.

Saizeriya was in the limelight for serving pizza with melamine-tainted dough from China

In 2008, Saizeriya was in the limelight for the wrong reasons when it was found that they were serving pizza with melamine-tainted dough bought from China. It offers refunds to all its customers who had been unfortunate to eat their pizza during the 8-days period where the dough was used.

Saizeriya was again in the news after the family of a sexually-harassed victim sued the company.

In December 2014, a young woman in her 20s who was working for Saizeriya in the Kanto region in Japan committed suicide over the apparent sexual harassment that her deputy branch manager was levelling against her. The man touched her inappropriately during working hours and even visited the woman’s home to torment and harass her, leading eventually to her death. The company, together with the branch manager and the culprit concerned, was sued by the family of the victim.

Not all Saizeriya outlets served consistent food

If you have visited more than one outlet of Saizeriya in Singapore, you would discover that the standard of the food served varies from outlet to outlet. Not every outlet serves food that is nice and cheap; in some outlet, they serve rather nasty stuff. So, visit the bigger, more popular outlets and you will have a better experience! #personalexperience