Cool Room, Hot Jazz

Style Watch: Rattan Revolution
Diversions: All Talk
Food: Season to Taste
Outdoors: Comfy Camping

Given the remorselessness of its wrecking crews, Beijing should not, by rights, be blessed with so enduring a structure as the Icehouse. But then the Icehouse is no ordinary structure. With 1.2-m-thick walls and access through a 20-m-long tunnel, it's more of a bunker—shouldering wars and revolutions, building booms and bulldozers. Lying in the shadow of the Forbidden City, the Icehouse, tel: (86-10) 6522 1389, is today the Chinese capital's best jazz and blues bar. But it gets its name from the fact that it held ice for the imperial family's exclusive use during the Qing dynasty (1644-1911). Every winter,...

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