Ask Beijing Today is our weekly attempt to make life in China less confusing. Whether it’s tracking down the papers to apply for a Chinese green card, dealing with KTV-crazy neighbors or finding the best buy on saffron, we are happy to help.
Q. I quite enjoy having some beer during summer. But I don’t enjoy overly bitter ales. Can you recommend some of the best beer available in Beijing?
A. There are many popular Chinese brands such as Yanjing, Tsingtao, Snow and Chun Sheng. But you can also try some of Beijing’s microbreweries, such as Great Leap Brewing and Arrow Factory Brewing, whose owners make delightful beer in small batches. Some of it is indeed bitter, but you can ask the bartender to recommend a pale ale or heffe weizen.
Q. Can you recommend some apartments with great kitchens in the Sanlitun Embassy district, Yansha center-Landmark River or even Sanyuan qiao area?
A. Some of our friends recommend Beijing Landmark Towers. Another choice is the Oakwood Residence, which offers fully serviced apartments (cleaning and gym included). Many BMW employees live there. But the rent can be quite costly – up to 29,000 yuan per month for a 140 sqm, 2-bedroom apartment.
Q. Is there a tennis league or club or social group I can join? I am a really keen tennis player.
A. Beijing International Tennis Centre is located in Chongwen District and hosts most major tennis tournaments in the city. Non-members can use the facilities for reasonable prices. Racquets and balls can be rented.
50 Tiantan Dong Lu, Chongwen
(010) 6715 2532
Q. Where can I buy Cuban cigars in Beijing? I’m looking to buy 3-4 for a friend’s party.
A: Here are three prestigious stores and clubs in Beijing that sell Cuban cigars that we know about:
17 Jianguomen Wai Dajie, Chaoyang
(010) 6532 1617
5 Jianguomen Wai Dajie, Chaoyang
(010) 6595 0888
3F, Tower C, Yintai Centre, 2 Jianguomen Wai Dajie, Chaoyang
Q. Are there any good gyms and martial art clubs around Xicheng?
A. Beijing Shichahai Sports School is highly recommended. The centrally located top athletics school is where Jet Li learned his nasty Kung Fu style.
57 Dianmen Xidajie, Xicheng
(010) 6618 5853