Travelers waiting to board their flights at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport will not have a problem killing time after the construction of several themed lounges is finished next year.
The nation’s largest international airport first drew the attention of the media with the opening of a waiting lounge featuring Japanese cartoon character Hello Kitty.
Wen Yung-sung (溫永松), senior vice president of Taoyuan International Airport Corp (TIAC), said the airport began renovating 34 waiting lounges in its terminals in 1999, with the project featuring a variety of different themes.
He said that the work has been carefully planned to avoid disruption of walking routes for passengers inside the terminal, which was why the renovations have taken such a long time.
The renovation of 24 lounges was finished as of last month, including six new themed lounges, he said, adding that work on the remaining 10 lounges is scheduled to be completed by the end of next year.
Six new lounges in Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 feature Taiwanese operas and Hakka culture as well as the fruit, tea, Koji Pottery and 100 high mountains of Taiwan, according to the airport operator.
The waiting lounge featuring Taiwanese opera was designed by Xiao Qin-yang (蕭青陽), who has been nominated for Grammy Awards four times for his album cover designs.
love and war
One of his nominated works was an album cover for singer Lala Xu (徐佳瑩), who sang a song inspired by the well-known Taiwanese opera Love Amongst War (薛平貴與王寶釧).
Aside from watching Taiwanese opera, TIAC said that visitors to the traditional opera-themed lounge in Terminal 1 will be able to see pictures of two main characters from Love Amongst War that have been painted on a wall.
Visitors will also be able to enjoy Chinese calligraphy created by Taiwanese calligrapher Grace Tung (董陽孜).
Another spectacular lounge is the one in Terminal 1 featuring Koji pottery designed by artist Chen Chung-cheng (陳忠正).
Chen worked with five other artists to decorate a wall 19m wide and 6.3m high with colorful ceramic cherry blossom flowers.
The Hakka culture themed lounge is sited next to the D6 boarding gate in Terminal 2.
Visitors can read about the history and culture of the Hakka people, including how they migrated to different parts of Asia and their distinct customs.
Visitors can also watch a mini-film about Hakka culture and play an interactive game testing their knowledge of Hakka traditional clothing.
Artifacts and other examples of Hakka culture are also to be displayed in the lounge from time to time.