Monday, April 1, 2013

Beitou 北投區, Taiwan


Now , the pavilion deserted,
there is no trace of her,
only the swallows twittering about bygones.
- Xin Qiji (28 May 1140–1207)
Xin was a Chinese poet, military leader, and statesman during the Song dynasty.

Beitou 北投區 is the famous hot springs district of Taipei. While it is always nice to spend a night or two at one of the hot spring hotels, the thing that really caught my eye was this aesthetically pleasing turn of the century red brick and wooden planks building. 

Beitou Hot Spring Museum was originally built as a public bathing house exactly 100 years ago in 1913 during the Japanese era in Taiwan. As a result it is a wonderful fusion of European and Japanese styles.

The ground floor is in European style complete with red bricks exterior and stained glass windows. The first floor is Japanese and has this big hall with tatami mats. Parts of the exterior of the first floor are covered in wooden planks.

I wonder if one of the stained glass is a depiction of Fuji-san 富士山. Or is that just my imagination?

Images: Exterior and interior of Beitou Hot Spring Museum. (January 2013)

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