Phillip Hong
6 August, 2006
Many people have stereotypes in regards to what they will find travelling in Asia. Some think the cities are dirty and filthy, and the rural areas are just as dirty and filthy. Some people think that you'll miss some of the pleasures of home.
In some ways, they're quite correct. Some places are filthy, whilst other places are kept impeccably clean. This applies to most of the world. Although being in another country may not feel like home, there are some pleasures that you might find on your way. I found a good amount of these pleasures in the shopping mall in Taipei 101.
Beauty and grace. Why both?
Taipei 101's construction reminded me of those paintings from Ancient China that you might find at the local museum. Designs resembling a cloud are scattered everywhere within the mall's foundation. For a second I felt like I was on Cloud Number Nine.
What I usually do when I enter a mall or other interesting building is to look up. With photographic evidence, I took many photographs of this building's ceiling, which reminded me of a slightly opened pistachio. The mall itself has different floor plans from floor to floor, so you always feel open whenever you're inside the centre.
Quirks and... not-so-quirky Quirks.
Taipei 101 as a skyscraper might give you a birds-eye of Taipei, but being in its shopping centre will give you comfortable pleasures of capitalism from home.
Try to get a double-grande latte with extra foam at the Starbucks located one of the upper floors, or go down to the first basement level to find a supermarket. What is most unusual is that wherever you go, you'll always find a North American establishment lurking somewhere within the premises, which brings a little too much of a homecoming.
What was most interesting was the presence of Canadiana within the shopping centre. Hark! Two stores from where I sat, there laid a Roots store!
Roots is a Canadian-cultured clothing firm that happened to open up in the middle of posh Taipei.
So I decided to have a look-look and a see-see to check out what kind of clothing they sold that attempted to be "Canadian". Their selection is about the same you'd find in a store in Canada, but the prices were absolutely terrible from a frugal view. $2,480 for a blue sweatshirt?!?
Briefcase Briefs features interesting places experienced first hand that are suggested for a quick visit.
Photo Gallery
Copyright © 2005-2009 Kesteven Crescent Media, a division of SRN Mediaworks
All rights reserved. We are not responsible for the content of external links. | Cafe | Fab | Radio | Local