Archive for the ‘Chinese Culture’ Category

Beijing Courtyard Museum, or Beijing Siheyuan Museum, the name card of Cultural Beijing

Sunday, January 9th, 2011
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather


For those oversea travelers who are going to visit Beijing, what they are expecting on their trip to Beijing, I think, is not mainly to see the skyscrapers, and fancy buildings here in Beijing. What intrigues them is to touch a cultural and traditional Beijing.
Old Courtyards (siheyuan) and Beijing Hutong are the living history and folklore of traditional Beijing. From these courtyards and Beijing Hutong, visitors can see the houses and lifestyle of old Beijing.
More and more courtyards and hutongs are being demolished to give away to new highrises. In 1950s,  there are more than 17million square meters of courtyards in Beijing. But by the early 90s, Beijing total courtyard area was only 4million square meters; to 2000, according to the cultural relics department to rough statistics, Beijing’s courtyard and Reduction of nearly 100 million square meters.
Today, most of the courtyards have become crowded courtyards, and are severely damaged due tothe state of disrepair. The courtyards that reflects the philosophy of living space and nature and construction has left us farther and farther. How to protect Beijing’s courtyards and Beijing Hutong, it has becomed a issue of common concern and need a responsible government to have a deep insight for the protection of the old courtyards and hutongds.
Today I read the exciting story from the local newspaper that Dongcheng district plans to build a courtyard museum in the Qianmen area to preserve Beijing courtyard culture. It is a living museum, a cluster of courtyards and at the same time keep residents living there, not just a courtyard with some picturs and objects on display.
I sincerely hope the living courtyard musuem will be built in near future. It will serve as a must see place for international travelers and make up for a place to represent the real and traditional Beijing.
Beijing Courtyard and Hutong Travel
Beijing Hutong Tours
Half Day Hutong Rickshaw Tour
Full Day Hutong & Lama Temple Rickshaw Tour

Beijing 7 Star Hotel – the first 7 Star Hotel in China

Saturday, January 8th, 2011
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather


Yesterday I learned a piece of stunning news over China International Radio to the effect that the most underdeveloped district in Beijing  – Mentougou District (the west suburbs of Beijing) would build a seven-star hotel similar to the design of the Burj Kahlifa in Dubai.
It is said that the 7 star hotel in Beijing will cost 1 billion euros at least! This first seven star hotel in Beijing will be built in cooperation with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. A 500-meter-high tour tower at the west end of the extended Chang’an Street as a new landmark of the Mentougou District will be constructed.
Like a farmer boy, I’m quite ignorant of what the seven star hotel will be like and fail to imagine how luxury the hotel will be. I have to search online for the photos of only seven star hotel Burj Al Arab Hotel to feed myself.
It is said that there are two ways of entering Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai either by going by Rolls-Royce or helicopter. Maybe a bit exaggerated, but it is certain that ordinary people cannot afford to come to such a luxurious hotel.
Although Mentougou District cannot be compared with Dubai, Mentougou should not be worried about the clients. Here, after all, it is Beijing, the capital where the rich people get together. It is sure that no ordinary working-class people can afford it, such laid-off workers, farmers. So who are the hotel’s target customers? It is estimated that they are real estate businessmen, the big boss of a class of “get rich first” and nobility. They have money, and it is nothing wrong for them to enjoy the luxury. We are used to waching them spending extravagantly.
However, I don’t know whether the seven-star hotel will aslo attract the customer spending of “public funds” (spending the money from the government). It will become “Golden Cave” of a number of public servants. This is not just an abstract speculation. There are no top-level domestic venues without the “support” of these “public funds” in China. 
People with “Public Funds” never talk about prices. The more expensive, the better in term of showing their the identity. I’m also worried that the seven-star hotel in Beijing will become the resort of a number of meetings, training courses, seminars and net working place using “public spending”.
One big reason for the local officials in Mentougou District to break the groud for the seven star hotel is that it will bring more tourists both home and abroad and boost the local economy. Well, as for the international tourists, in my opinion, they are more interested in Chinese culture and history, something unique in China. Why fly thousand miles to enjoy so called “western luxury”?
Maybe the decision makers of the seven star hotel are standing on the 20th floor with a better view while I’m only on the 5th floor with limited eyeight.
Maybe, I’m too worried about the 7 star hotel, which is still at the planning stage.

Chinese New Year VS Western Christmas

Thursday, January 6th, 2011
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather


Chinese Lunar New Year Feb 02 - 09, 2011 ( a week-long holiday)

Every country and every nation has its own traditional festivals. The Chinese New Year (Spring Festival) is the biggst red-letter holiday in China while Christmas is the most important holiday day in the western world. Those festivals offer people an opportunity to be torn away from their routine work and daily worries to unwind themselves and to foster kinship and friendship.
The Spring Festival (Chinese new year) and Christmas have much in common. Both are prepared in advance to create a happy atmosphere; both provide a family reunion with a big feast; both make the children happy with exciting gifts, yummy food and new clothes. But Chinese Spring Festival has nothing to do with religion while Christmas has something to do with God and there is Santa Claus with white beard to bring children presents.
Today, many of the Chinese young people have started to celebrate Christmas, following the example of the westerners. Maybe they spend Christmas mainly just for fun becuase of curiosity. However, for most expats living in Beijing or other parts of China, they would like to spend Chinese Spring Festival mainly due to the fact it is a good idea to explore deep Chinese culture. Various traditional customs and activities are kept and handed down during the Chinese new year (
Spring Festival) including pasting Spring Festival scrolls, paper-cuts pictures, setting off firecrackers and fireworks, paying New Year visits, and eating dumplings.
The date for Chinese Lunar new year is not fixed, between late Jan and early Feb each year. This year 2011’s Chinese new year day falls on Feb 3, 2010.
The official paid day off for the Spring Festival is 3 days. But Chinese government makes it a 7 day holiday by moving the prior weekend and the upcoming one together with these 3 days. This is the Chinese government’s “holiday economy” policy. In a nation that for thousands of years held diligence and hard work in the highest esteem, the Chinese have learned to relax, travel and loosen their wallets since their country began its thrice annual holidays seven years ago, known as Golden Weeks.
Beijing Chinese New Year Travel Service
» Chinese New Year Eve Experience Tour
» Beijing Spring Festival Day Tour
» Lantern Festival Experience Tour
» Beijing Spring Festival 6-Day Tour Package