Press Release

2024.04.11 Event Facility Nicknames Decided

The Japan Association for the 2025 World Exposition (hereinafter referred to as “the Association) is pleased to announce that it has chosen nicknames for the four facilities that will host events at Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan (hereinafter referred to as “the Expo”) from entries submitted by the public.  
The call for event facility nicknames was held from 29 November, 2023 to 28 December , 2023, with the aim of raising anticipation for the Expo and contributing to building momentum. From the 1,596 entries received, the selection committee conducted a first and second selection of those that met the formal requirements.
The final selection was then made by the selection committee members after checking the meanings in Japanese and foreign languages and conducting a trademark search.
The nicknames will be used in information for visitors, such as on the venue map and the venue names in event information.

Facility Nicknames

* The name will be written in the order of ‘Official name “Nickname”’.

・EXPO Hall “Shining Hat”
・EXPO National Day Hall “Ray Garden”
・EXPO Arena “Matsuri”
・EXPO Exhibition Centre “WASSE”

▽EXPO Hall “Shining Hat”

■ Nickname Concept:
The name “Shining Hat” was inspired by the golden circular roof and its appearance.
The intention is that visitors can identify the facility and its nickname at a glance.
(Prize winner’s handle name: Tanten, Tokyo Prefecture)
■ Facility Overview:
・The EXPO Hall is the symbol of the entire venue. Its design is reminiscent of the “Tower of the Sun” from Expo ’70 with its large, golden, round roof and its strong, stark-looking walls rising from the earth.
・The theatre in the round, with its seats and stage all in one, is a festive space wrapped in textured, pure white fabric that symbolises the “shining future of life.”
・Total area: 8,400 m², approximately 1,850 seats.

EXPO National Day Hall “Ray Garden”

■ Nickname Concept:
The nickname evokes the image of a garden with an aerial deck, glass architecture, and symbolically shaped hall, with light connecting ancient times to the present day and the future.
(Prize winner’s handle name: Hiroaki, Chiba Prefecture)
■Facilities Overview:
・The EXPO National Day Hall is a hub for international exchange where events for official participants will be held
・The architecture celebrates the relationship between the sea and earth of the Expo site, which has been a gate for international exchange since ancient times.
・The lively environment mixes the outdoor expanse with multiple bands of slabs and indoor venues for entertainment.
・Total area: 4,400m², Capacity: approx..500 seats

▽ EXPO Arena “Matsuri”

■ Nickname Concept:
“Matsuri” is the Japanese word for “festival”, and the word “Matsurigoto” refers to politics and governance. This nickname was considered particularly fitting for this venue, which will bring together two sides of the public and the private.
(Prize winner’s handle name: Yamada, Fukuoka Prefecture)
■ Facility Overview:
・This venue will be the base for the largest outdoor events at the Expo. It can accommodate approximately 10,000 people.
・There is a geometric circular artificial grass area in the centre, and a pergola with bamboo benches on the outside
・Its aims to be a “world-class place for the dissemination of digital content culture.” Three large video apparatus are installed on the stage.
・Area: 23,000 m², Capacity: approx. 10,000 people.

▽ EXPO Exhibition Centre “WASSE”

■ Nickname Concept:
The nickname was coined by combining the Japanese words “waiwai”, which means “exciting” representing the liveliness of the Exhibition Centre, and “wasshoi”, the shout of Japanese festivals, with the Japanese name of the Exhibition Centre “Messe”
(Prize winner’s handle name: Himarin, Shiga Prefecture)
■ Facilities Overview
・The Exhibition Centre will be a base for exhibitions and trade fairs, as well as dialogue programmes and business exchanges aimed at solving global issues.
・Tent eaves are placed in front of the entrance, creating a relaxing gathering space for visitors.
・Building area: 4,900 m², Capacity: approx. 3,000 people.

Selection Committee Members * In alphabetical order

・Amandine (Bonsoir TV)
・MANABE Hideki (Deputy Director-General, Commercial Affair and Services Group, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry)
・NAGAYAMA Yuko (Yuko Nagayama & Associates)
・WATANABE Akira (Deputy Director, Cross-Market Group, Coss-Market Promotion Department, Japan National Tourism Organisation)

Comments from the Selection Committee Members
Three of the five selection committee members, Amandine, TACHIBANA, and NAGAYAMA were interviewed. They talked passionately about their thoughts and ideas on the selection process and their expectations for the Expo. For details of the interview, please visit (Japanese)

 ●What points were important during the selection process?
We wanted to choose nicknames that would be easy for everyone to understand, regardless of age, nationality, or disability, and that would evoke an image just by hearing the name. We were also conscious of whether a sense of cohesion would be created when the four facilities are lined up.

 ●What kind of events do you expect to be held at the facilities?
I think music and festivals are events that people can participate in and interact with even if they don’t share a language. I fell in love with Japan because I was able to interact with many people there. Being able to experience live music performances and festivals in each country would inspire people to learn more about that country.

● What points were important during the selection process?
In the final selection committee, there was a lively discussion that, since the event was to be held in Osaka, Kansai, they wanted to choose a nickname that would evoke a sense of regionality, and this perspective was important in the selection process. I decided on the name after fully grasping the design of the building and the characteristics of the location, as we did not want a nickname that would not fit the building.

 ● What kind of events do you expect to be held at the facilities?
If a variety of events, from traditional festivals to new expressions, such as the ‘National Day Special Day’ and Japanese festivals, where many people from all over the world represent their countries in a variety of events and give you a chance to get to know the expression and personality of each country, the Expo will be a very satisfying event.

●What points were important during the selection process?
Through discussions with other members of the selection committee, it became clear that there were countless criteria for selection, including the perspectives of “JAPAN in the World”, “Osaka/Kansai in Japan”, and “A name that people around the world can relate to”. I was particularly conscious of the fit between the appearance of the facility and the nickname.

●What kind of events do you expect to be held at the facilities?
These facilities have a great visual impact. It would be great if these wonderful places could host events such as dances, plays and music that would touch people’s hearts.

Comments from designers and venue design producers of each facility

ITO Toyoo, designer of EXPO Hall “Shine Hat”
Together with a nickname that captures the exterior features of the building well and is easy to remember and understand, I hope that the ‘Shine Hat’ will be recognized as a landmark in the large venue, creating a powerful impression and experience for many visitors.

HIRATA Akihisa, designer of EXPO National Day Hall “Ray Garden”
We thank you for selecting the wonderful nickname as the name of the architecture that celebrates the harmony with the sea and the land, which has been a hub of international exchange since ancient times. We would like to create a facility where many people from all over the world can come together through the Expo so that “Ray Garden” becomes, as the name suggests, a place wrapped in the energy of light.

IKKAI Toshiyuki (NIKKEN SEKKEI LTD), designer of EXPO Arena “Matsuri”
I created this facility to be the focal point of the Expo, which is also a festival on a global scale. The space is expressed through a refined rationality based on the spirit of ‘Wa’ (harmony) and the use of bamboo, a traditional material. The nickname ‘Matsuri’ seems to be appropriate for this facility. Through this nickname, we hope that many things that Japan is proud of, such as its festivals, culture, thoughts and customs, will be conveyed to the world as an enjoyable image and help to realise the SDGs.

OKAJIMMA Hiroaki (TOHATA ARCHITECTS & ENGINEERS and Yasui-Showa-Tohata Design Consortium), designer of EXPO Exhibition Centre “WASSE”
Congratulations on the decision on the nickname “WASSE.” The EXPO Messe was designed to be simple and functional so that all events held at this facility would be more attractive. We hope that it will be a lively festival as the name “WASSE” suggests.

FUJIMOTO Sou, venue design producer
I felt that the four nicknames chosen this time were all clearly reminiscent of the appearance of the building and the events held there. They are nicknames that are both uniquely Japanese and have a resonance that will be understood by people from all over the world. We hope that they will become familiar nicknames that people from all over the world who visit the venue will feel like saying unconsciously and that the nickname will encourage people to enjoy the building and the events there even more.

【Press Release】
Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan Open Call for Event Facility Nicknames (Japanese)