Posted in Living in Beijing

I Won A Bowling Ball!!!

p3070050Bowling is a sport where I’m neither good nor bad.  My current average is 105.  My goal for this year is to average at 120.  Seems reachable right?  There are several bowling alleys in Beijing.  The most famous is Gongti 100 in Gongti Xi Lu.  The International Friendship Bowling League hold their tournament there every Tuesday night at 730pm.  Each game at this alley cost RMB 25 before 5pm and RMB 30 after 5pm.  Smoking and drinking are allowed.  If you buy their prepaid card worth RMB 5000, each game before 5pm is RMB 15 and after 5pm is RMB 18.

Near Dongzhimen, East Gate Apartments has a bowling alley at the basement of their mall.   Each game cost RMB 15 before 5pm and RMB 20 after 5pm.  The alley closes at 12mn so you better time yourself well.  They have fewer lanes and columns in between lanes are a bit distracting.  No smoking or drinking allowed.  Beware of flying balls as some players literally throw their balls and not towards the pins but it slip off their fingers when they’re about to throw it.  If you get a prepaid card worth RMB 3600, each game before 5pm will cost RMB 3 and after 5pm will be RMB 6.  In between bowling tournament, this is where we practice to reduce cost.

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Posted in Living in Beijing

International Friendship Bowling League

I officially confer myself as a bowling fanatic.  This is just a step below from the bowling addicts.  If you read through my New Year’s resolution, #2 on my list is to get an average of 120 in bowling.  Currently after almost a 100 games since Dec. 28, my average score is a 102. I hope I can reach my goal towards the end of the year or better.  In any case, I usually play 5 games a week on average and I even bought a prepaid card to lower the cost of each game.  My bowling addict friends play at least 10 games a week and not just once but sometimes 3 times a week.

In any case, to all bowling fans in Beijing, you are cordially welcome to join as a group of 4 to 6 people in the International Friendship Bowling League.  This League plays every Tuesday starting 730pm.  The players are composed of expats from different countries and different sectors of society.  We have players who work for the different embassies, hotels, news groups and businesses.  It’s fun and a good place to network!

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Posted in Living in Beijing

Apartment Hunting for Dummies

Which type of people usually look for an apartment? There’s the newbie who just arrived in Beijing for their newest adventure, the oldie who’s lease just expired, the businessman who’s sick and tired of staying in an apartment. In any case, finding an apartment in China needs your haggling and language skills. Also, a Chinese friend would be the best to do the translation for you.

Here are some tips that may help you in your apartment hunting:

  • If the ad says “near the subway”, never believe it till you’ve seen it.
  • Most apartments are now equipped with western toilets.
  • If you don’t like cleaning your apartment, go for service apartments such as Oakwood, Palm Springs, HQ Ritz, etc. However, be prepared to pay for a higher than usual price.
  • Decide which district do you want to live and your budget.
  • Best place to live in would be walking distance to the subway or bus stops. The price on these places are usually higher.     Continue reading “Apartment Hunting for Dummies”
Posted in Living in Beijing

Free Expat Magazines!

Going crazy with a language you can’t understand?  Don’t know where to find a book that makes sense?  When prices are going up, freebies are hard to come by.  But, for expats in Beijing, you get to know the latest happenings in art, cinema, music, shopping, sports and more through the magazines you can get from your favourite expat restaurants in town.

Here’s a list of English magazines you can bag and maybe pile at home and sell it once you’re done with it.

1.  thebeijinger – this monthly magazine used to be called That’s Beijing.  However, this year the management decided not to renew the contracts of their foreign writers and those writers banded together armed with their contacts to create this new magazine.  I prefer this one than the new team who’s currently writing That’s Beijing.  They got a mean directory of restaurants and other services.  They even sometimes include a map insert of different areas which expat usually go to.  They have several more magazines which they write but I’m not really sure how often do they come out such as Urbane and Beijing Kids.

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Posted in Living in Beijing

Rolls Royce Drophead Coupe

In Beijing alone, statistics said that there are more than 1,000 cars added each day.  That’s why if they stop implementing the odd-even scheme after September 20, I’m pretty sure the city will be back in a gridlock.  In any case, you will get the chance to admire expensive cars more on the road.  I mean, Audi’s are a dime and a dozen here.  You may think of them as your common Toyota or Honda.  Visit any high-class international apartments and you’ll see a Jaguar, Rolls Royce, Ferrari and Maybachs parked side by side.

On my way home the other night, I was impressed by one of the cars parked in front of the Pizza Hut restaurant near my home.  Someone was checking out a spanking Silver Jubilee colored Rolls Royce Drophead Coupe.  I may not be a car expert but I know the big names in the industry.  This particular car is a convertible.  At that time, the guy was playing around with the drophead feature of the car.

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