With a history of more than 580 years, the Dashilan-Liulichang Cultural and Commercial Area is one of the most historic and interesting market places in Beijing. The 790,000 square-metre area is dotted with ancient, Republican Period and early People’s Republic structures and businesses, including some of the oldest Time-Honoured Brand businesses in China. With some of its buildings dating back to the latter Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and the early days of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), Dashilan is 275 metres long and now contains about 80 shops, each of them a famous brand and most are prospering, including the Tongrentang pharmacy, the Ruifuxiang cloth shop, the Neiliansheng shoe shop, the Zhangyiyuan tea shop, the Daguanlou cinema and so on. Liulichang Culture Street-often simply called Liulichang-is located midway along and perpendicular to South Xinhua Street (Nan Xinhua Jie). Stretching east-west for 769 metres, Liulichang has long been a cluster of old brand name shops such as the Rongbaozhai gallery, Daiyuexuan Ink Brush Store, and Cathay Bookshop, to name just a few. After several renovations, the area has retained its classic style, while becoming a favourite of locals and foreign visitors in search of books, paintings, antiquities and stationery, especially the “four treasures of the study” and traditional Chinese artwork.
The area is rapidly becoming a world-renowned cultural and commercial area based on the presence of time-honoured Chinese brands and the collection and distribution of cultural products, all of which showcase ancient Beijing’s charms, its culture, commerce and tourism in a wonderful and appealing combination.
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