As a final act of retribution for the bitter Chinese Civil War, the former Hangzhou residence of former Taiwanese leader Chiang Ching-kuo has been turned into a freaking McDonald’s… errr a McCafé.
The two-story western-style brick and wood villa was built in prime real estate near West Lake in 1931. Chiang Ching-kuo, former leader of the Kuomintang, and son of Chiang Kai-shek, lived there until he was forced to find a more permanent residence in Taiwan.
Considering that its former resident would go on to be the president of the Republic of China, the Hangzhou city government had been having a bit of a hard time finding any willing renters for the villa, until McDonald’s showed interest back in January.
The proposal initially provoked a storm of controversy with people worrying about the preservation of the historical structure. To ease concerns, McDonald’s promised to open a more classy establishment than usual — a McCafé — that would specialize in lattes rather than Modern China Burgers, in order to uphold the sanctity of the historical building.
According to NetEase, the cafe can seat 100 guests. Two months earlier a Starbucks cafe opened in the side wing of the same building. The interior structure and exterior walls were not altered during constructions. If visitors want to see Chiang’s old living quarters, they’ll have to go around the back.
Netizens have mostly met this latest news with varying levels of bemusement:
“When are we going to turn Mao’s old house into a KFC?” wondered one netizen from Zhejiang.
“Finally, Chiang can serve the people,” joked another netizen from Beijing.
Does this make up for Starbucks getting kicked out of the Forbidden City?
[Images via NetEase]