The record/music store lives on at the Xinyi location.
Shenzhen, we hardly knew you:
Three more branches to close:
As usual Taipei News only catches part of the story
There’s a new big one underground not far from Taipei Station. And there are other new ones in new areas like Banqiao. Seems more like reshuffling than closing.
Eslite R79 Store / Zhongshan Underground Book Street
B1, No. 16號, Nanjing West Road, Datong District, Taipei
As the Taiwan News story points out, there will continue to be an Eslite next to Taipei Main Station, in the curiously dated underground Eslite Mall.
And of course the underground Eslite complex just north of Zhongshan MRT Station is right nearby too.
Eslite Xinyi to close?
This guy on twitter is not happy with what he is seeing.
Not surprising, people don’t read in Taiwan let alone buy books, surprised they lasted this long. The one downstairs in Taipei main station in the tunnel can best be described as an annex hardly a “big store” compared Xinyi or the one on Dunhua…I agree with Baubry, although I always thought Eslite was a bit corporate but the all night thing was certainly unique and cool to Taipei. I imagine 30-40 years ago there might have been actual bookstores on the street.
My concern is also that all of Taiwan is slowly becoming 7’s and claw machine “arcades”. It’s nice to have convenience stores available when you need them, but claw machines provide absolutely no positive benefit for anyone but the people who stuck them in the empty store front in the first place. They’re a waste of space, a waste of electricity, there is no stable job being created for anyone, and 100% of the product you get is plastic trash. At least people can browse boutique-like items and look at books at a bookstore. Though I will point out that a bookstore tends to take up a lot more space than a store front of claw machines.
Baubry neglected to mention one more feature of store fronts in contemporary Taipei: lottery ticket shops, which iirc at one point passed the total number of 7-11s.
I do believe they’re called sports lottery shops. Because playing scratch off tickets are just like playing basketball or baseball…
Main Station Elite is closing, too. Seems their business model reached its end.
Aye. They’re no longer the coolest looking bookstore in town, with Tsutaya arguably seizing that crown.
And look at the amount of stuff people buy online nowadays, while Eslite pays enormous rents for prime locations.
The plague accelerated the change to virtual shopping.
Real pity. It was such a landmark.
But yes, the greed of landlords has no limit. Bring down such a tenant…for what? I think the place will become one of many empty mosquito halls. Land prices will go down, there will be a crisis and a scoop for trading. Meanwhile, jobs and wellbeing will be affected.
That being said, some malls in the US are now more packed than ever (while others are creepy ghost towns) (point being some people still like in person adventures)
I barely use convenience stores any more, certainly don’t eat there. But would purposefully still go to the bookstore. That’s one of the few shopping experiences that I missed when most of them disappeared in the US.
More nails in the coffin, this time in Xinyi:
Do people even buy books from Eslite? I always assumed they just sat on the floor and read them and then went to all the small shops and bought all the trinkets and DIY crafts for kids and whatnot. I do like their selection of German and Japanese drawing materials, but I’ve seen those in a lot of places that aren’t Eslite (and I also don’t just go about buying NT$5000 pens…, so it’s not like I was helping them exist either…)
I have bought books and gifts from Eslite, but after donating hundred of books to the library before moving back to Taiwan, I decided to never buy books again. I now just borrow books from libraries.
To be clear, I have also bought books from Eslite, though I’m real tired of the humidity making books i take care of look…not well taken care of. I just got the impression that people spent way more time than money there, making its whole business model potentially problematic…
Got to go where the business is like Malaysia.