F&B

This M'sian Couple Spent All Of Their Wedding Budget To Start A Unique Tarot Café

  • Hippie Cafe is a café and speakeasy in Jinjang Utara, showcasing interior design based on Tarotology and Bohemianism. 
  • The couple Kelferd and Lotus decided to run this café instead of spending it on a wedding, inspired during Kelferd’s journey to quit smoking. 
  • To recoup their investment, the pair hosts artistic workshops to drive traffic, while keeping customers engaged with unique menu ideas. 

Most cafés in Malaysia are going minimalist, because that’s the #aesthetic of today.

Meanwhile, this café went in the opposite direction by embracing abundance into their design—with a unique twist.

Introducing Hippie Cafe, an event space and eatery in Malaysia that showcases attention-grabbing murals all based on Tarotology, pretty self-explanatory, and Bohemianism, an unconventional way of life.

“Hippie Cafe was founded out of passion where Tarotology elements and mural arts meets a rustic, industrial concept,” said Lotus Wong, co-founder of the space.

Image Credit: Hippie Cafe

During the day, Hippie Cafe is an Insta-worthy café serving food, tea and coffee.

By nightfall, the space transforms into a cozy speakeasy serving foreign beers and drink experiments.

To stand out from the crowd, Hippie Cafe is designed with a one-of-a-kind ambiance. The skulls and dreamcatchers on the murals are hand-drawn and come with a mixture of the two elements mentioned earlier, to bring it to life.

The café even offers Tarot reading services.

Why Tarot?

Lotus has been drawn to Tarotology since she was a girl.

She finally got the opportunity to practice and learn from famed Tarotologist Hary Tan—with whom she honed her craft for 1 year. Now, Lotus’ interests have taken her towards a Tarotology-related study called Embodied Cognition, part of cognitive psychology.

Now she uses this knowledge to offer Tarot reading services. She’ll even offer free Tarot sessions for lucky customers.

As it happens, Lotus has always loved to cook, while Kelferd has always enjoyed mixing drinks. So they pooled their talents into what Hippie Cafe is today.

The couple decided to spend the money on developing this in the place of having a lavish wedding. 

Image Credit: Hippie Cafe

“Instead of spending our savings on a wedding, it could be a chance for us to step out of our comfort zone and do something that follows our passion.”
– Lotus Wong, co-founder of Hippie Cafe

The pair began devising the idea of Hippie Cafe during the time where Kelferd was giving up smoking. To fight his cravings, the pair travelled to as many cafés and restaurants they could find to munch on food and desserts.

These visits began an inkling of an idea.

“We believe that art and music help in integrating people, and a café is a place where ideas come from. We could relate to the arts in terms of mixology and culinary. Hence, we started Hippie Cafe.”

Now they’re in the process of recouping that investment. 

Image Credit: Hippie Cafe

As to be expected, starting out with an intention of standing out has helped them in gaining traction. With its focus on art, Hippie Cafe’s goal is to be the “preferred chill-out spot for art enthusiasts in Klang Valley”.

So now they’re actively courting musicians and artists to come teach their craft in the space.

They did a floral workshop, featuring Love Limzy, a visual and lifestyle artist-illustrator with 93.8k followers on Instagram. They will also have a Mandala Art workshop in February 2018.

They’re quite daring with their menu experiments. 

Image Credit: Hippie Cafe

Besides their Croffle (croissant-waffle) dishes and a latte made out of butterfly pea flowers, the couple has some pretty interesting drink options.

In their Sparkling Coffee-tail series, a drink called the Hippie Head was a surprising find that gives customers “a root-beer-float-like experience with a hint of Soju”.

Meanwhile, a coffee cocktail called The Gypsy was based on a legend.

“The legend goes that during the 1840 War, French soldiers concocted the drink while stationed at the fortress of Mazagran in Algiers, Algeria. The coffee helped them stay awake, and they added some rum to help get through the hot African nights,” said the pair.

They’re not quite breaking even yet, but they stated that they’re growing steadily.

Since their launch in August 2017, this would only be the beginnings of their journey. While the Hippie Cafe is clearly a passion project for Kelferd and Lotus, we can tell that they have put a lot of thought into how the space is run, and how they will establish themselves in the industry.

Their investment into the space was high, but who knows? It might actually reap both physical and spiritual rewards in the long run.

  • Address: Hippie Cafe,
    3470, Jalan Jinjang Aman 2,
    Jinjang Utara,
    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Editor’s Note: This article has been edited since publication to clarify the status of this F&B establishment. 

Feature Image Credit: Tian Chad 

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