Established in 1908, the Red House in Ximen is now 110 years old. It was Taiwan’s first government-built and operated market and is now the oldest and most highly-preserved historical market building in Taiwan. You’d never guess there’s also a Japanese-style inari shrine just next door! The Red House building has taken up different roles throughout the years, evolving from a market to becoming a movie theatre and theatre stage. From 2008, the Taipei City Government’s Department of Cultural Affairs designated the Taipei City Cultural Foundation to turn this historical site into a cultural and creative platform, in hopes of developing Ximending’s local economy. After 10 years of operation, they have not only accumulated a multitude of creative energy and created a cultural and creative hub in Taipei, but also set the bar for similar institutions in Taiwan.
Maybe you’ve never noticed before, but the Red House’s octagon shaped building is livelier than ever since its reopening on March 1st. A century old historic landmark has been activated once again and the interior has been given a whole new look.
One of the Red House’s memorabilia is the painting“100 Year Old Bricks, Red House Romance,” which uses delicate strokes and colors to depict the former glory of the Red House. Over a century, the Red House has bore witness to the rise and fall of generations. The designer has used warm tones to preserve the most beautiful image of the Red House.
1. 「The Red House Tea Shop」
Definitely don’t miss out on the newly redesigned “The Red House Tea Shop”! As a space for travellers to relax, the environment is even more comfortable than before. There’s abundant natural light flooding into the seats near the window, which is also a great photo angle. We recommend the popular “milk tea” which uses Taiwan”s locally grown tea leaves and has a unique fragrance.
2. 「The Red House Select Shop」
“The Red House Select Shop” sells Taiwanese creative designs and products carefully selected by the Red House, showcasing Taiwan’s very own culture and creativity. On the weekends, they also have creative markets mixed with indoor theatres-- a creative way to display the richness of Taiwan’s culture and creative hub and a tasteful space that allows travellers and designers interact.
Travel and consumption habits have evolved over the past few years in Ximending. Many tourists and backpackers bring their own travel guide books when they visit Taiwan. So we hope the Red House can be the very first stop that these travellers visit the moment they exit the MRT station, like Ximending’s main reception desk. Here, visitors can have a better understanding of how the area has evolved to its modern self and experience Taiwan’s local culture more profoundly.
The Red House is filled with the marks of history and exciting stories, which, in turn, have made the Red House a stable cultural landmark in an ever-changing business area as Ximending. The historic site also provides unique designer products that were made and designed in Taiwan. This has placed greater value on the products itself and invoked local design talents to really shine through as they share the legacy they’ve inherited, generation after generation. Travellers can now select the most unique gifts or memorabilia even if they ar only stopping by Taiwan for a short time.
The Red House
Address: No.10, Chengdu Road, Wanhua District, Taipei City.
Opening Hours: 11:00-21:30, Extended hours to 22:00 on Fridays and Saturdays. (Closed on Mondays)
Official Website: http://www.redhouse.taipei/