The Friendship Hotel, located in the Haidan District of Beijing, is one of the largest "garden style" hotels in Asia. It is over 330,000 square meters, 250,000 of which are outdoors, covered with plenty of trees, grass, and other vegetation. Designed using traditional Chinese architecture, it consists of several 7 story, typical hotel buildings, and many more apartment-style buildings, home to tourists, businessmen, and sometimes even the businesses themselves. The apartment-style residencies are fairly spacious, and include color television, air conditioning, and basic kitchen conveniences.

The on-site amenities are quite expansive, ranging from swimming pools and gyms, to bowling lanes and driving ranges for those wanting to work on their golf. Shops and restaurants are plentiful as well, including an American-styled T.G.I. Friday's. There is also a "guest coach" in which residents can ride, as a method of getting place to place, or just to enjoy the scenery.

Perhaps one interesting thing to note about the Friendship Hotel -- or most anything in Beijing containing the word "friendship" -- is something generally not told to tourists and visitors. That is, "friendship" is a term used primarily during the Cold War, and represented facilities (lodging, stores, restaurants, etc.) catering to Soviet dignitaries who were in Beijing at the time. Indeed, the Friendship Hotel itself used to be just that -- lodging and office space for Russian ambassadors, diplomats, and scientists!

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.