Futai Street Mansion 撫臺街洋樓 is a Japanese colonial era commercial building dating back to 1910. Located immediately to the south of Beimen 北門, recently the site of a major urban renewal project, it has been witness to more than a century of history here in the administrative heart of Taiwan. For more information I recommend reading this great article in Taiwan Today, this Taipei Times feature, and this post by Aris Teon. The mansion also has an official Facebook page if you’re interested in whatever events they might be hosting.
Taiping Old Street 太平老街 is an unusually long stretch of Japanese colonial era shophouses in central Douliu 斗六, the administrative seat of Yunlin 雲林, Taiwan. Located not far from the train station, this old street is remarkable for its length (600 meters long), consistent architectural style (almost entirely local variations on Baroque Revival), and relatively good state of preservation. Despite this, it is not a huge attraction, which is just as well if you’re not a big fan of mass tourism in Taiwan.
Fugang Old Street 富岡老街 is an obscure anachronism in the western part of Taoyuan 桃園, Taiwan. It extends from a railway station that opened during the Japanese colonial era in 1929 through the heart of this small Hakka town. The coming of the railroad brought prosperity to the area and several ornate shophouses were built around the station in a mishmash of architectural styles common at the time. Nowadays it is just another street in rural Taiwan, albeit one with a little more history than most, possibly because it is too unimportant a place for modernization to have swept away these vestiges of the past.
Yumei Hall 玉美堂, also known as known as Hong Family Mansion 洪氏洋樓, is located in Jialao Village 茄荖村, a small settlement on the eastern edge of Fenyuan 芬園 in Changhua 彰化, Taiwan. Built in the late 1920s when the village was administered as part of Caotun 草屯 in Nantou 南投, it is one of only a handful of “Western-style” country manors built in central Taiwan during the Japanese colonial period (see my post about Jukuiju 聚奎居 for another great example).
Xinhua Old Street 新化老街 is one of the finest old streets in all Taiwan. Located in Xinhua 新化, Tainan 台南, the street is lined baroque revival and art deco buildings from the Japanese colonial era. Most of the buildings on the western side of the street date back to the 1920s whereas the eastern side features a more modernist style from the late 1930s.
Jukuiju 聚奎居 is an abandoned mansion in Wuri 烏日, Taichung 台中, built in 1920 by Chen Shaozong 陳紹宗, a wealthy businessman and landowner. The architecture is a combination of the traditional Taiwanese sanheyuan 三合院 (a U-shaped building with three parts surrounding a central courtyard) and the Baroque Revival style of the Japanese colonial era. It is located on the rundown, industrial margins of the city, along an otherwise unremarkable lane next to a military base, looking completely out of place in space and time.