Red House Theater

The Red House Theater (Chinese: 紅樓劇場; pinyin: Hónglóu Jùchǎng), often called Hong Lo[1] Red Play House, Red Theater, Ximen Honglou[2] or Ximen Red House in English, is a historic theater in Ximending, Wanhua District, Taipei, Taiwan. The theater is located at 10 Chengdu Road.

Red House Theater
Taipei Taiwan Red-House-Theater-01.jpg
LocationWanhua, Taipei, Taiwan
Coordinates25°02′31″N 121°30′24″E / 25.041987°N 121.506739°E / 25.041987; 121.506739Coordinates: 25°02′31″N 121°30′24″E / 25.041987°N 121.506739°E / 25.041987; 121.506739
Public transitXimen Station
ArchitectKondo Juro
Red House Theater
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese紅樓劇場
Simplified Chinese红楼剧场
Ximen Honglou
Traditional Chinese西門紅樓
Simplified Chinese西门红楼
Japanese name


Built in 1908 during Japanese rule and designed by Japanese architect Kondo Juro, the Red Theater was originally a market building, with its ground floor serving as a department store.[3]

From 1945 onwards, the building was used as a theater, housing a troupe performing Peking Opera.[4] The theater's many functions throughout the years signify Taiwan's sociopolitical hybridization.[3]

It was renovated due to a fire in the 2000s.[2] From 2007 onwards, the Red Theater has been managed by the Taipei Culture Foundation, which uses the theater as a platform to promote the Cultural and Creative industries and revive the Ximending's community.[5]

The Red House was listed as a Class III Historical Site in 1997. In 2016 the area was subject to an arson attack.[1][6]


The Red House's unique architectural style is characterized by blended Western and Meiji era Japanese architectural patterns. The style of the building can be attributed to its architect's education, as Kondo Juro attended the Tokyo Imperial University, where he became cognizant of Western architectural styles.[3] The Red House consists of an octagonal building, known as the Octagon Building, a Cruciform building and the adjacent square.

In 2015, the Cruciform Building was renovated to restore Taiwan's first marketplace and grocery bazaar. The building is home to the Creative Boutique which provides local labels with aesthetic retail spaces.[4]

In 2016, the Octagon Building underwent the largest-scale renovation in the last 100 years.


The Riverside Live House Corporation Ltd. took control of the horizontal section of the main Cruciform Building in September 2008. It hosts concerts by students and musicians from Thursday throughout the weekend.[citation needed]

The building was converted into a theater in 2007, and has since become a popular part of the gay scene in the neighborhood. It is the site of the annual gay New Year’s Eve countdown[2] and the Taipei Pride and the Mr. Gay World Taiwan pageant.[1]

It was the venue of the Wikimania 2007 Party, which included a short film festival.

In 2017, the main lantern of the Taiwan Lantern Festival was displayed on the square of the Red House, attracting numerous international visitors.[4]


The ground floor houses a small cafe and a display on the history of the building, as well as several independent shops. The second-floor theater hosts regular live performances. The theater is within walking distance west from Ximen Station on the Taipei Metro.[citation needed]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c
  2. ^ a b c Ferber, Lawrence (3 March 2015). "Is Taipei Asia's Most LGBT-Friendly City?". Condé Nast Traveler.
  3. ^ a b c Chia-Hui Lin, Francis (2015). Heteroglossic Asia: The Transformation of Urban Taiwan. Abington, Oxon: Routledge. pp. 62–94.
  4. ^ a b c "The Red House-A Century of Stories and Blessings". Retrieved 2019-06-07.
  5. ^ "The Red House". Taipei Travel. Retrieved 2019-06-07.
  6. ^

External linksEdit