Pingxi Reception Center of Taiyang Mining Company
History of Origin and Development Pingxi was originally a mountain city where farming was the main industry. The camphor, clerodendrum, and tea were the main export products. During the Japanese colonial period, large number of coal mine was found there. Eighty percent of the residents in Pingxi are involved in the coal industry. During the prosperous period, there were fourteen coal mines in the whole township. The large production of coal had helped Pingxi Township to be at its glorious golden age. In the beginning of the Japanese colonial period, the mining authority in Pingxi belonged to the first village chief of Pingxi Village, Ping-Chuo Pan. In 1907, a coal field was found but could not be mined independently. In the next year, the mining authority was turned over to Fujitagumi. The quality of the coal mine of Pingxi was good. However, due to the poor traffic conditions and the transportation problems, the coal field was not mined until 1918. Ping-Chuo Pan convinced Fujitagumi and Yun-Nien Yen that they should invest together in the mining business. They formed Taipei Charcoal Mining Company (former name of Taiyang Mineral Products Company) and started the mining officially. Later on, the construction of the Pingxi Branch Railway led Pingxi to a period of prosperous development. Today's settlements of Pingxi Village, Shihdi Village, Jingtongkeng settlement, and Shihfen settlement were formed at that period. Even though coal mining in Pingxi had declined, the relics of coal mining culture can still be found in some old railway stations and old streets that enable the visitors to recollect and trace the flourishing mountain city, Pingxi.
Taiyang Club (Prince Hotel) was built in the 1930's by Taiyang Company. Taiyang Club covers a total area of more than six hundred pings with the house area of 202 pings. The building was completely made of wood and constructed in Japanese style. It quietly lied by the river and in the forest. According to the legend, the palace-look building was especially constructed as a resting place for the Japanese prince who visited Taiwan during the period of Taisho Reign. Hence, the local people called it “Prince Hotel.” Later on, it was taken as a place for greeting guests and officers, holding conferences, presentations, and lectures, and installing many welfare facilities. At that time, it had significant effects on the energy policies of Taiwan. Regarding the building itself, the main construction materials are the high-quality cypress. The interior wooden decoration, window lattice, and the carving on doors were the exquisite handicrafts of artistic value. In 1986 the building was sold to Master Hueitzung of Jingtu Sect and was changed into Cyulian Temple. In 1999, Master Hueitzung died and his younger brother Hua-Yu Wang took over the temple. At that time, the local community general reconstruction was implemented; therefore, the building was listed as a historical relic and a scenic spot. Therefore, it is half-opened to all visitors. Features In 1922, the Yen's family of Taiyang Mining built the mansion for Prince Showa of Japan. In fact, Prince Showa had never lived in the building after the construction was completed. (His visit was canceled because of the infectious tuberculosis in Taiwan.) Later, the building became Taiyang Club.
Presently, about eighty percent of the hotel was preserved originally. With the total area of 600 pings and construction area of 202 pings, the building adopted a "Japanese-Western mixed construction." The wood used for construction was the high-quality cypress and fir. Currently, the general conditions of the building are well preserved. The interior wood work is extremely delicate. With the refined carving of the window lattice and doors, the expensive construction materials and the furniture specifically designed to suit the height of Prince Showa, the building is of high artistic value. Unfortunately, the original gorgeous roof has been replaced by the covering of a simple waterproof tarpaulin. Now the hotel is a personal belonging called "Cyulian Temple," which has been selected as one of the "100 Scenes of Taiwan." Inside the building there are nineteen rooms, including conference room, dining room, the European sitting room, study, maid's room, and so on. Some people said that it was called "Prince Hotel" because Taiyang Company built it in order to host Prince Showa of Japan during his visit. Actually, Prince Showa had never visited it. Taiyang Club was constructed by high-quality cypress grown in Alishan, Taiwan. Although the building is mainly of Japanese style, quite a large part of it is of European style, such as the use of color glass at the doorstep and the design of sitting room, which are different from the style of the traditional Japanese building. The conference room of Taiyang Club is extraordinarily special. Its ceiling and walls are in an arch- shape that was considered a style of royal level. The ceiling was thinned to be the natural veins of trees and it symbolized the noble decorations and unusual momentum. The employment of such kind of interior decoration was to show off the wealth and the lofty position of its master. According to Taiyang Company, quite a lot of important decisions and development projects were determined here.
2013.01.03 09:21 am
【2013/01/03 聯合報】@ http://udn.com/