Business / Hangzhou G20

International lifestyle adds interest for residents

By Zhou Mo (China Daily) Updated: 2016-09-04 08:10

Naoko Tsukada has been living in Tianhe central business district in Guangzhou for more than two years. The 44-year-old Japanese housewife moved to the capital of Guangdong province from a northern city in 2014 after her husband was transferred to work in the southern Chinese city.

Compared with her time in the north, Tsukada said her life in Guangzhou is more "colorful and interesting".

"Apart from the daily routine of sending my son to a Japanese primary school and going shopping at a supermarket near my residence, I can attend various interesting activities," said Tsukada, who lives at the Canton Residence serviced apartments, owned by the New World China Land Ltd of New World Group Hong Kong. "Besides, the environment here is pleasant and the facilities are good."

Several months ago, Tsukada attended a Chinese traditional art event organized by the residence. It invited egg carving master Sun Kaifu to give an introduction on the history and production of traditional crafts and to teach people how to make egg crafting pieces.

"I loved this activity," Tsukada said. "Not only did I get to learn something about Chinese culture, but also I was able to make friends with people from many other countries, like the United States, South Korea and Australia. It's a really international community here."

The Canton Residence, where 90 percent of residents are foreigners, is part of Canton Place, is a high-quality international life circle in Tianhe CBD built with the vision of integrating the world and demonstrating the international quality of life in contemporary Guangzhou, formerly known as Canton.

Various activities have been organized by Canton Place to help foreigners integrate into Chinese society and culture, and to enrich their lives in the country, including cross-border miniconcerts between China and Brazil and fruit-picking activities on farms on the outskirts of the city.

"Working and living in Tianhe CBD, I don't feel like I am in a local community," said Igor, a Russian businessman.

"There are Thai restaurants, Italian restaurants and restaurants from other countries everywhere. There are always international events being held here. You can find overseas food easily in supermarkets. More importantly, you don't feel any discomfort from being a foreigner here as you are very well treated. It is highly internationalized."

While Tianhe CBD strives to build itself into an internationalized area with an open, diverse and inclusive environment as the number of overseas businesses and professionals grows, it is also, at the same time, making efforts to preserve its traditional culture.

The Hung Sin-nui Art Center was built in the city to recognize the well-known Cantonese Opera artist Hung Sin-nui's distinguished contribution to culture. The art center, a cultural landmark building in Tianhe CBD, covers 3,000 square meters and includes an exhibition hall and a theater.

The traditional culture of Liede village, which has a history of 800 years, has also been protected and preserved by combining modern and fashionable lifestyles with ancient traditions.

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