Frequently Asked Questions
Just in the Cat Lounge.
The kitties spend most of the day on the floor, and cat health is one of the few things we're sticklers about (along with premium wet food).
Do I need to buy a ticket in advance?
Not at all.
(However). Our busiest hours (Sat, Sun, and sometimes Fri) typically sell out a day in advance. It's easy to make a reservation online, where the availability is updated in real-time. And while the Cat Lounge is ticketed, the cafe side is just a normal cafe, with seating for up to 16 humans and a big viewing window of the Cat Lounge.
I Hear That Unlimited Green Tea Comes with My Visit?
Sure does. Four heirloom varieties from our partnered Japanese farm in Kyoto, grown at ideal elevations and hand picked. They're as subtle as they are nuanced, like our one-eyed cat Blinx. (We also typically serve a rotating selection of two iced teas). This as part of the visit because there is little better than relaxing with a cup of premium tea in a room filled with playful, silly, sleepy cats.
How many cats are at KitTea Cat Cafe?
Typically 20 - 24 — please see the ‘Cat Count’ on our website’s landing page for today’s number.
As a cat sanctuary to 14 resident rescue felines, we are their forever home. We feature 6 - 12 adoptable kitties through our partner, Hopalong Animal Rescue. The count varies as cats find their forever homes (yay!) and it can take a little while before a new rescue arrives (finding a purrfect fit for such a unique environment can take time). We also give the new cats plenty of socialization time in our custom built acclimation room.
Food and drink in the Cat Lounge?
Yes! Anything from our menu, found here. (Except the scones - they are too buttery for our cats not to go full-crazy over).
We like to think of a visit as spa-like - a massage without the massage (unless you get Tippi on your lap). The process is akin to buying a ticket for a concert, but the band is 20-ish cats and the singing is much better than you'd expect.
Weekday | Weekends
Why is the Cat Lounge ticketed?
To put in in San Francisco terms, we go through a Prius worth of cat litter every 3-4 months (3,300 pounds). That in addition to sky-high rent, medical care, 24/7 cat care, time necessary to socialize our at-risk rescue / adoption cats, 1,200 cans of cat food per month, and a health-code compliant build-out means that we can't survive solely on tea sales.
If you'd rather skip the cat cover (we certainly don’t want to purressure anyone), you can sip and snack at the cafe and watch the cats through the big viewing window. (Thank you in advance for understanding).
How do I get to KitTea Cat Cafe?
KitTea Cat Cafe is conveniently located at 96 Gough St. in Hayes Valley. We're a short walk from MUNI (~5 mins / Van Ness) and BART (~10 mins / Civic Center).
If coming by car, please allow yourself extra time to find parking and bring quarters for the meter (sometimes the CC readers go down). An affordable, nearby garage is Performing Arts Garage at 360 Grove Street (~5 min walk).
Can I host a private event at KitTea Cat Cafe?
KitTea is a unique location for parties, company off-sites, and other private events. The Cat Lounge (up to 15 people for a private event) and entire KitTea space (Cat Lounge + Tea Lounge, up to 30) are available at a fixed price per hour, with discounts depending on the day, time, and season. Visit our private events page.
Please note: groups of 8+ are required to book the Cat Lounge privately so as to preserve the experience of the guests that would be otherwise be booked with you. In other words, we never want someone to feel like their visit has turned into someone else’s birthday party or bachelorette.
Can I change or cancel my reservation?
We're the kind of people who always want to say 'yes'.
It's in our DNA (along with an alarmingly high number of Neanderthal genes - thanks 23andMe).
Sometimes life happens and Cat Lounge reservations need to be changed. Please give us at least 24 hours of notice and we'll happily reschedule 1-hour Cat Lounge visits. Due to the nature of special events (e.g. Cats on Mats Yoga), we ask for 2 days of notice. Even though all sales are final, we'll always do our best to accommodate your needs, which includes: selling your ticket to someone else (and refunding) or re-booking you into a time that wouldn't otherwise be booked-out (no-shows with no notice are the exception, all courtesy re-booking offerssubject to KitTea’s sole discretion).
Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any re-scheduling requests or give us a call at (415) 658-7888.
Where do you get your cats?
We are fortunate to have relationships with (the utterly amazing) Hopalong Animal Rescue and several rescues and shelters in Northern CA, where we typically choose cats based on need (e.g. difficult to adopt, on the euthanasia list). You'll notice that we have several black and tuxedo cats in our cat lounge, as they are the least adopted type of cat.
Are kids allowed in the Cat Lounge?
Yes! Kids 6+ on weekdays and 9+ on weekends are welcome in the Cat Lounge. At least one adult (18+) needs to be present for every three children; if you;’d like to ask for an exception to either rule, please just call or email and we will likely be able to work something out.
Kids (and adults) of any age are welcome on the cafe side, which has a large viewing window of the Cat Lounge.
Can I bring my own cat?
We understand that the term "cat cafe" can seem deceiving. Unfortunately, the answer is no, we are not a "BYOC(at)" establishment. It’s a hornet’s nest of socialization and communicable disease concerns. We are also unable to accept surrendered cats directly. In the sad event that you find yourself in this situation, we highly recommend finding a friend or family member who is able to take on the important role as pet parent as our shelter and rescue systems are underfunded and overcrowded. The Humane Society of Silicon Valley also lists a number of resources and, in lieu will take cats directly with a surrender fee. Our partner, Hopalong Animal Rescue, is also a good resource.
Are the cats active … or will they be sleeping?
Our cats are super friendly and social, which is why they are here. However, most cats sleep 16 hours per day. You’re likely to encounter a mix of cats playing, relaxing, napping, sitting on shoulders, and full-on sleeping.
While it's hard to predict when the cats will be awake, cats tend to be most active during the first couple of hours after we open (10am - 1pm) and around dusk (after 5pm). Outside of those times, they tend to be more subdued and interpersonal during slower hours (12 - 4pm, Mon - Wed) when there is less stimulation. If you are interested in a more laid-back vibe, afternoon nap time is very relaxing and a good way to de-stress.
Do you accept volunteers?
Not at this time, but we are always looking for foster homes in case a cat living at KitTea needs a change of pace or scene.
How can I best support KitTea's cats?
Cats need love, care, and attention, so simply scheduling a visit to our Cat Lounge can be just as beneficial for the cats as it is for their human counterparts. You can also support our partners, each dedicated to the cause:
Hopalong Animal Rescue is our non-profit partner rescue for adoptable kitties and they are always grateful for any support with their foster program. Hopalong Animal Rescue is dedicated team of volunteers who have saved numerous rescue kittens and cats over the last 10+ years!
Buster's Fund supports cats (and dogs!) in California's rural Central Valley. A portion of our proceeds are donated to them and we encourage you to do the same!
Friends of SF Animal Care and Control is a non-profit organization created to supplement the limited city-funding of SFACC. Check out how you can help pets in need by clicking here.
Resources for cat owners
Pet friendly housing in the Bay Area: