Is Tienmu still a Western/foreign enclave now?

Just curious how large is the Western/foreign presence in Tienmu these days compared to the 1970s/80s. It was certainly considered an expat enclave back then. For the old timers who have personally witnessed the evolution of Tienmu (& Taipei) over the last 30-50 years, would be great to hear your views! To be honest, I haven’t been to Tienmu in 10+ years and can’t now because I’m not living in Taiwan now. Otherwise, I would go there and find out for myself. I can think of certain areas in Singapore & Hong Kong where around 20-30% of the people you seen are Westerners & other foreigners but never got the impression that Tienmu has been like that for at least the last 30 years.

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It’s nothing like that now. You’ll see a few more foreign families than elsewhere, but that’s probably true of much of the Shilin-Beitou area.


You see more western families than elsewhere due to the presence of TES and TAS, but not so much of the young adult or single foreigner crowd. They’re more likely to be in central Taipei where the fun is, southern Taipei where the major universities are, or out in New Taipei where rent is cheaper.


I used to live in tianmu and it hasn’t had a large western community for at least twenty years.


I’m surprised how many foreigners i see there and how many of the shops speak English to me when I walk in as a foreigner.

I see less foreigners in central Taipei and less shops try to speak English to me.


It’s all relative. There’s barely any Westerners in Taiwan. I worked in the city center for years and often would see no Caucasians nor any non East Asian looking folks on any given day. Was in Neihu last week, HQs of many Taiwanese tech companies there , I only saw a couple of Indians in terms of obvious foreigners.


Yeah, that part is still very much in full effect here, and is my excuse for still knowing very little Mandarin after more than a decade. Nobody speaks Mandarin to me until I leave, and then I’m always momentarily shocked when they do until I wake up from my Tianmu slumber.

We got plenty of foreigners in Xindian. Heck, in our street alone, there is at least one foreigner or even foreign family per building.

We got the training quarters for Kid Castle. White faces at the Mormon Tabernacle. HTC and Gigabyte Indian engineers and families. All kinds and colors of atogas at the tech park.

Up in the hills you got your artistic furriers.


If anything western, tianmu is probably filled with rich taiwanese kids that were sent abroad and are now flocking back. Seems to be the old rich taipei sector with a few boat loads of spoiled rich kids to fill in the cracks until they find their place and open shops in more artsy/modern areas.

I like the area precisely because its less modern and more green than much of taipei while still having a lot of education minded folks around. If i were rich i wouldnt mind a mountainside house on the outskirts there.

Maybe upper-middle-class.

Rich Taiwanese living Xinyi, Neihu, and other places more access Taipei central area.

Talk about an elite conclave of maple syrup consumers.

Is it actually a castle ?


I wouldn’t classify myself as a Kid Castle expert :face_with_monocle:


Xindian area is near Google as well, as they share the same building as HTC for some of their teams. They’re moving out to Banqiao gradually though, so a lot of folks might actually leave that area. They had some efforts in place to attract a lot of foreigners.

I think Icon lives in the fancypants part of Xindian.
Kids went to local mega school (the biggest elementary school in the whole world or at least Taiwan at one point I heard ), there were possibly five to ten Western parents . Some foreign Asian parents too which is more than most places but still pretty tiny numbers. The issue is not many families and long term immigrants…There you go.

I think of Xinyi and Neihu as the upper middle class or nouveau riche types, i.e. people with high paying jobs. Tianmu has a lot of old money rich who don’t work at all, or maybe only work in remotely managing their wealth, and therefore prefer to be in their little enclave away from central Taipei. They even successfully kept the MRT out because they thought it would bring in the riff raff. It’s a weird scene.

Those people are all over Taiwan, it’s really no different in my experience. Most of the wealth is in that older generation’s hands.

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True. I think there’s a significantly higher concentration of that in Tianmu than most places, though.

To call anywhere in Taiwan a ‘foreign enclave’ seems to me a bit of a stretch. It is just not anything like HK or Singapore like that, in terms of sheer numbers.


Believe it or not everywhere I have lived here was full of retired people with some money stashed away and multiple apartments. I know what you are saying about tianmu cos not many younger people have been moving there.