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You won't believe what's happened to Sanlitun Bar Street

Everyone's favourite hive of scum and villainy has been blitzed

Photos: Robyn Strachan
Bar Street: love it or hate it, the Magaluf-meets-Beijing vibe of the expat enclave was one of the most integral bits of Sanlitun, and now it's been drastically altered. As in, half of the street's been bulldozed.

bar street first

Properly known as Sanlitun Hou Jie, the infamously divey street has played host to all kinds of exploits since it transitioned into one of Beijing's most notable nightlife areas back in the noughties. We're pouring a glass of fake alcohol out in memory of the place, because it sure as hell has changed beyond all recognition.

main image bar street

Fans of Biteapitta, the rooftop sleaze of Kokomo and the top tunes at Rec Room.live can breathe easy, however, as their side of the street was still alive and kicking, with no plans that we know of to send in the sledgehammers.

bar street safe

bar street 3

Alas, all of the nail salons, waxing joints, DVD shops and girlie bars on the left of Bar Street (from the Taikoo Li South end) have all been eradicated, with only a digger, a few piles of glass and a welder chucking up sparks in the middle of the road to ever prove they were there.

bar street dumpling

bar street first 4

bar street welding

The bars, food slingers and ciggie stalls plonked on the left-hand side of where Bar Street meets Sanlitun Lu are also no more, with premises on the right-hand side (nearest to Moka Bros) currently unmolested.

bar street corner

The Government's reasoning for the wipeout, roughly paraphrased, is as follows: the businesses that went bye-bye were in situ against regulations that have been in place since before their arrival, and getting rid of 'em will have a net benefit to Beijingers as they were pretty damn ugly.

bar street corner 2

One thing's for sure, though; whatever happens, it's inevitable that Mojito Man will return.

mojito man
'That is not dead which can eternal lie/ And with strange aeons even death may die': HP Lovecraft, The Call of Cthulhu

Before
before

After
after

RIP Bar Street. Time of death, April 24 2017.

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