Beijing has a long history of teahouses, which used to be a part of the life of the ordinary people. Teahouses of arts, coffee houses and bars are in great demand currently in the city. But the popular teahouses, where ordinary people are able to consume, are few.
The price is too high for ordinary people to consume in some big teahouses, or called teahouses of arts, that still have the Beijing tradition. In one of the teahouses of arts, people have to spend 180 yuan only to take a pot of tea and watch a performance.
According to the people who often visit the teahouses of arts, the atmosphere there is really good, but the price is too high for ordinary consumers to enjoy. Most of the visitors who can afford to spend in such teahouses are businessmen or white-collar clerks. In a teahouse with Taiwan style, people have to spend more than 20 yuan or at least 8 to 9 yuan to take some tea and cookies. What people can do there is chatting, reading or listening to the music. This kind of teahouses is suitable for young people, not for the old.
“We only need a place where we old people can chat by spending only several yuan. But it is hard to find such a place now in Beijing. The price in the teahouses is really too high for us,” complained an old man. It seems that the teahouses which ordinary people need must be taken into account in the construction of Beijing.
(Beijing Evening News 03/28/2001)