Sunday, October 26, 2014

Taipei Throwback: The Curiosities in Modern Toilet Restaurant and Ximen Red House

The first full day in Taipei somehow became a walking trail whereby we experienced the serendipity of discovering sights that weren't in our mental itinerary. There are far too many photos for Day 1 and so this post would focus on the curious places we visited -- Modern Toilet Restaurant (便所主题餐厅) and Ximen Red House (西門紅樓).

My travel blog posts are more of photo stories chronicling my trips and I do not aim for my travel posts to be a travel guide that is full of useful travel information. There are many informative travel blogs out there and I would often be linking these useful contents to my posts.





~*Breakfast Next Door*~

While the first night in Taipei was cold and rainy, the following morning dawned bright and sunny. We popped by the bakery next door with breakfast coupons issued by the hotel. The bread looked absolutely delectable but our coupons could only be used for certain categories of bread. The picture at the bottom right of the collage was what we got in the end with the coupons. Nothing filling at all but no fear, for Taipei is full of cheap and good food!




After breakfast, we decided to explore Ximending which was just a few streets away from our hotel. Along the way, I saw this nondescript building called Zhongshan Hall. I snapped a picture of it, making a mental note to check out if this is a place of interest. If you are interested, this blog post on Zhongshan Hall is very informative. I never knew it has such rich historical significance.




Ximending was about a 10-minute's walk from our hotel. When I saw the bustling little place, I felt like I was truly in Taipei.





~*Modern Toilet Restaurant*~


Taiwan is well-known for its delectable street food and hence it was really queer that our first lunch in Taipei was in Modern Toilet Restaurant (便所主题餐厅).




Modern Toilet Restaurant is one of Taiwan's successful themed restaurants that was clearly not on my must-visit places. Since we chanced upon it at Ximending, we decided to check it out. The hubz was hungry though I wasn't quite sure if I would be able to stomach the food served in bowls shaped like toilet bowls, drinks served in urinal bottles and the likes...




We dined at tables that are actual bathtubs with with a glass over it and sat on actual toilet bowls. You could even lift the seats up and frankly, I didn't want to look into it that much.




I had a hard time deciding what to eat when I looked at the Chinese menu. Some of the dishes had got very creative names.




Take for example, "Modern Toilet Fresh Fruit Juice". Reading that drink in Mandarin, it translated loosely to "Poo and Pee Anyhow Fly Fruit Juice". Of course it sounds a lot more lyrical in Mandarin. When the waitress saw me furrowing my brows trying to decipher the menu, she immediately gave me the English menu. I found out that in plain English, it was just a boring "Modern Toilet Fresh Fruit Juice" without even revealing what fruit it was. -_-|||




Top Left: My main dish was soupy beef soup hot pot
Top Right: The chicken nuggets had very cute name like "toilet bowl little chicken bits" when read in Mandarin. I love the nuggets the most.
Bottom Left: Kh's main dish which I think was pork cutlet
Bottom Right: Our tea came in actual urinal bottles




I regretted ordering a soupy main. I was halfway through my meal before feeling really grossed out eating from a toilet bowl bowl.




Kh felt that his pork cutlet meal was not bad and remained unfazed eating from the toilet bowl. I guess it would be a lot easier to bear with it since his dish was mainly dry. That shit he was posing with was just a photo prop. When we asked what that was, the staff told us it was for taking photos with and so he did.




The milk tea served in urinal bottles was delicious.




The ice cream dessert was served in a toilet bowl bowl too. I never knew toilet bowls came in such form until I saw how the public squat toilet bowls look like in Taipei. Exactly like this bowl! In Singapore, our squat toilets do not have that cap-like feature.




The empty tables in this collage were occupied by a large group of Singaporeans before I took these photos. Oh my and don't get me started on the sink shaped like a toilet bowl.




Besides the delicious little chicken nuggets, this heart-shaped egg tofu saved the day.




Similar to many themed places, the food isn't exactly cheap for the mediocre standard. I laughed when I saw this note in the bathtub/ table.





~*Ximen Red House*~


Walking out from the other side (as seen in this picture) of Ximending, we stumbled upon Ximen Red House (西門紅樓). For a great write up on Ximen Red House, you could refer to this post.




The Ximen Red House "[b]uilt in 1908 during Japanese rule and designed by Japanese architect Kondo Juro, it was originally a market building but was used as a theater from 1945 onwards. The building recently underwent an extensive renovation. The ground floor currently houses a small cafe and a display on the history of the structure, as well as several shops in which independent artists sell their art. The second floor theater regularly hosts live performances." -- Wikipedia.




I love exploring the shops in this section of the building.




If you know the creative side of me, you would definitely understand why I love these curious little shops.




I'm always fascinated by retro stuff and vintage items.







I'm easily inspired by colour pencil art...




... quirky drawings...




... adorable illustrations...




... classic looking Peter Rabbit style art and basically anything artsy.




Emma A party looked like something I like and I love the placement of these 2 characters when seen from this angle.




I do not know if these animal sculptures were faceless and then vandalized or were they meant to be like that.




I would love to take home one of these polka dot elephant.




I love cute cats.




I love imitating cute cats and being silly.




Kh loves posing and acting whenever, wherever.





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Thank you all for your comments on my previous posts. It has been a really busy work week, staying back in office till 10+pm on a few occasions to tie up the loose ends for the events that we are organizing this coming week. Sunday morning (in a few hour's time) would be spent at the event venue doing some run-through. Replies would be slow and I hope to be able to reconnect with all of you soon. In the meantime, please keep the love coming in and have a splendid Sunday ahead while I catch up on some sleep.



43 comments:

  1. I can't bring myself to eat at the Toilet Restaurant in Taipei - I think I'd have the same issues, I would be too nauseous to eat anything. Plus, I don't think the food at these theme restaurants in Taipei are as good as real, authentic Taiwanese foods!

    Hope you had better food during the rest of your trip!

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    1. Hey Emily. You're right that these themed restaurant don't serve great food. It's just a novelty to many and also for photo-taking purpose. Love seeing newcomers around. Would drop by your blog soon!

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  2. I'm so jealous, I'd love to visit Taipei so much!! Lucky girl :)

    Arianna, Nymphashion ♡

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    1. Thank you, Arianna. I hope you get to visit Taipei too!

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  3. Jo, I am 99% sure I don't want to eat food out of toilet bowl shaped container... I know they are clean but it is just the thought...

    I love vintage and retro items, especially if I can find them in clothing and update them a bit for this era. I really like finding older pieces of furniture that I can fix up and decorate my home, which I need to do more of, putting my own stamp of style..

    It looks like you had fun, there are a lot of places to see, enjoy the rest of your weekend, catch up with you soon... I understand busy, I have been studying and more to do tomorrow :)

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    1. Always love reading your comments and hearing your thoughts, Launna. Somehow I love to look at vintage pieces but I do not really own them myself. They have just so much beauty in them to appreciate.

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  4. Cute restaurant dear :D
    WWW.PUTRIVALENTINALIM.BLOGSPOT.COM

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  5. Lovely post^^ the toilet restaurant looks so funny xD and you look so beautiful ^^

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  6. Oh em gee, toilet restaurant? I´ve never heard about anythng like this. It sounds amazing as well as disgusting, I don´t know what more haha. But the food looks delicious, only I couldn´t imagine eating from something like these, nor eat/drink something which is called pee and poo. It´s crazy for me. The animals are soo cute, mainly the polka dotted elephant. :)
    Fashion Happenss

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    1. Haha... When I saw this restaurant featured on a travel programme on cable channel, I thought people must be crazy to visit such themed restaurants. I never expected myself to visit it. I think I would be able to finish a dry main dish served in a toilet bowl bowl, not the soupy one which I ordered.

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  7. I like the cute animals and the other artsy stuff you found. But I don't think I'd enjoy eating in a restaurant where I couldn't tell the plastic poo (for pictures) from ice cream. :D

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    1. The plastic poo was cute. It looks quite like chocolate ice cream actually. Lol.

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  8. Hi Jo! Oh my, when I read the title I was wondering what you meant, lol I want to go to the Modern Toilet Restaurant now, what a fancy and exaggerated place! I never saw something like this before! What a shame is also pricey, for sure the "experience" is "worth" the same, that toilet bowls are so realistic, I dont know if I would able to eat!:P Ximen Red House looks interesting, love vintage stuff as well, Id be inspired there!:) You are so sweet imitating the cat ans so your hubby is!:) Have a lovely week Jo, if you like European city, we have to travel together so!:**

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    1. Haha... When I saw this restaurant featured on a travel programme on cable channel, I thought people must be crazy to visit such themed restaurants. I never expected myself to visit it but for the experience of the novelty and for photo-taking purpose, yeah! Next time if I go Italy, I must plan a trip to your hometown, Lilli!

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  9. Nice post!
    Would you like to follow each other?

    xoxo
    Happy Monday
    Isabelle @ Stoer & Sexy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love seeing newcomers around. I would usually follow back if we have enough meaningful exchanges and connections. Looking forward to seeing you around more often. =)

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  10. Oh wow, your trip looks great! My mother went to taiwan last year but I wasn't able to join her. I've heard and seen so much about the toilet restaurant and would've loved to go there for a poop looking ice cream!! I didn't realize they served such yummy food too! Thanks for dropping by my blog and commenting on my top 10 pet peeves post. I'm a very straightforward person, I don't like being reserved so what you read is how I would talk in person if I had to cram everything into short paragraphs! Pet peeves are things that bother you more than normal so you can already assume from the start that they are things that piss me off! They aren't necessarily things that even happened to me, but things I see happening that really bother me. I've never been pregnant before that's for sure!!! ^^

    ReplyDelete
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    1. When I saw this restaurant featured on a travel programme on cable channel, I thought people must be crazy to visit such themed restaurants. I never expected myself to visit it. So probably it was a blessing that we walked past it and decided to check it out for the novelty and for photo-taking purpose. Haha... That's for sure for the last part of your comment. Well it is nice to read about your pet peeves as it allows me to know more about you.

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  11. These looks amazing!! I loved the toilet place, haha. I would have had a lot of fun in there, that is really creative. Am glad you enjoyed yourselves :)) Have a wonderful week my dear xx

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    1. It's really comical when I read that you love toilet place. Hahaha... When I saw this restaurant featured on a travel programme on cable channel, I thought people must be crazy to visit such themed restaurants. I never expected myself to visit it. So probably it was a blessing that we walked past it and decided to check it out for the novelty and for photo-taking purpose.

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  12. Hi Jo, hope you enjoyed your stay in Taipeh. I don't think I could eat anything in the Modern Toliet Restaurant haha. This wouldn't be a success in Europe. I'm quite sure and on top of that the food is mediocre and not cheap. Well at least the note was funny.
    RTC: You're welcome Jo. I hope it helped. I'm sorry you had a busy week at work. It's the same over here. Wish us both a little bit time to relax and have fun :D

    xx

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    1. Honestly, I haven't seen such themed restaurants in Europe but who knows, it might be a hit for some radical or adventurous people. Hehe... Like Kizzy and Lilli above loved it. ^^^ I love the chicken nuggets there. All other dishes tasted normal. It's just a novelty and for photo-taking purpose. I hope the bz-ness at work would die down for you soon coz the holiday season is coming!

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  13. Haha the toiler restaurant made me laugh so hard. The quirky drawings are soooo cute :3

    Feel free to follow me; if you'd like me to follow back just let me know. ♡ BlogInstagramTwitterTumblr ♡ YouTube and Facebook coming soon ♡

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    1. Thank you for your comment. I love seeing newcomers around and would check out your blog soon. I would usually follow back if we have enough meaningful exchanges and connections. Looking forward to seeing you around more often. =)

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  14. Jo, I couldn't stop laughing at Modern Toilet. I saw a picture of it one time on Instagram and wondered about the restaurant. I could probably eat from a "toilet bowl" but I think I would have problems drinking from a "urinal" HAHAHAHA You guys are good. Thanks for showcasing it. Their stores are nice!
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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    1. I think that as long as it is anything watery, I wouldn't be able to finish it coming from all these toilet bowls. I wonder if you would be able to finish my soupy dish. Hehe... Surprisingly we finished the milk tea. I saw a blog post whereby the blogger ordered tea w/o milk and what was inside was indeed unappetizing.

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  15. The Modern Toilet Restaurant sounds like quite a unique experience. I don't think I would mind sitting on a commode so much but eating and drinking from toilets and urinals sounds less than appetizing. I guess they are really charging for the experience since you mentioned that the food wasn't all that. The shopping seems fun though.

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    1. When I saw this restaurant featured on a travel programme on cable channel, I thought people must be crazy to visit such themed restaurants. I never expected myself to visit it. I wouldn't go back there again but was glad to have that experience. So probably it was a blessing that we walked past it and decided to check it out for the novelty and for photo-taking purpose.

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  16. Omg Jo. I'm not sure if I would do that lol. But I'm sure my kids aren't :). Lol , it looks like a fancy and fun restaurant for a real brave one. I hope you enjoyed your stayed and had lots of fun there. What a great experiences Jo. It's always my pleasure for being here :). Halloween is a fun spirit for the little once in the US. My kids favorite Holliday as everrrr but how funny they dont like to eat candy but trick or treating for a fun:).

    Thanks for your lovely dropped over and happy November to you too:).

    http://www.attraction2fashion.com

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    1. Thank you for your comment. The pleasure is mine, Tanya. I think that's great that your kids love the act of trick or treating but they don't really like candies that much. Lots of kids give in to candies and it could get difficult to curb their desire for sweets. You're fortunate that your boys self-regulate without a hitch. Have a great November!

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  17. Fabulous places, love all the amazing unique pieces! :) xo

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    1. Thank you for your comment. Love seeing newcomers around here. =)

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  18. amazing restaurant, super cute
    new outfit on my blog http://tr3ndygirl.com
    i wait you
    kiss

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  19. Wow it looks like you had such a fun time Jo! I enjoyed reading about your expedience at the Modern toilet! I'm guessing its expensive because its pretty famous and has been written about in numerous websites, newspapers and magazine all around the world! Must be fun! :)
    Keep in touch
    xx
    www.JuneWantsItAll.com

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    1. Yup. It has also been featured on Discovery Travel & Living if I remember correctly. I didn't know it has been featured in so many other print media!

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  20. Oh wow everything looks so beautiful

    Please let me know if you would be interested in following eachother on GFC and Bloglovin.Would love to stay in contact.

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves
    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I love seeing newcomers around. I would usually follow back if we have enough meaningful exchanges and connections. Looking forward to seeing you around more often. =)

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  21. What great pics! Looks like you had a fun time. What an interesting theme for a restaurant! T. http://tickledpinkwoman.blogspot.com

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I love reading sincere comments and hearing your voice. While blatant self promotion of blogs and follow for follow requests are not advisable, I would love if you leave a mark here with a trackback link so that I could connect with you. I reply to comments here or on your blog so don't forget to check back on replies! =)

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