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mirador mansions: the study of a warren

on the 10th floor of the mirador "mansions" (similar to the infamous chungking mansions), where i'm staying for a few days while in hong kong, there are a ridiculously diverse number of businesses. in other to illustrate my point about warrens, i took a small survey of the business on the 10th floor, where my guesthouse is located. here is a complete listing of what i found:

21 Unlabelled Doors
3 Tailor Shops
3 Retail Stores (with names such as "Perfect Shop")
1 Guesthouse
1 Hotel
1 Clothing ("Fashion") Company
1 Professional Services
1 Grace of Jesus / A.O.G. (A church, i believe)
1 House of Branded Perfumes/Cosmetics Store
1 Handicraft store

the entire interior appears to be crumbling very slightly, little offerings of trash sit on the ground against the walls at irregular intervals (such as the wine box spilling out chicken bones), laundry hangs to dry from the corridor ceiling, elevators only go to random subsets of floors (conjuring up dystopian images of a post-apoclyaptic apartment building with abandonded floors whose only tenants are feral inhabitants fighting over chicken bones), doors are apparently puurchased by their occupants so each one is compelely different than the one before, indian, pakistani, african (and a few british) people mingle with chinese people in the halls and shops on the ground floor.

the sheer density and diversity of mirador mansions is hard to believe. I've never seen any place quite this before in my travels, and it seems to somehow be uniquely hong kong. as someone mentioned in the wikipedia article on chungking mansions, it does seem to evoke the ghost of the now-destroyed kowloon walled city.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 3, 2006 3:53 PM.

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