On a very rainy morning, I decided to head to the Hu Xueyan Mansion, just a few minute's walk from the historical Qinghefang Street in Hangzhou. Constructed in 1872, the mansion covered an area of 5,815 square meters (19,078 sq ft). A successful businessman, Hu became wealthy after investing in banking, tea, silk, and medicine.
A pavilion and pond with koi was a central part of the mansion.
The Hu Mansion comprises of over 20 buildings arranged in the typical landscape style south of the Yangtze River and is an excellent example of the architectural style of the late Qing dynasty. Zigzag bridges (designed to thwart evil spirits who could only travel in a straight line) and covered walkways took visitors to different parts of the mansion. Some rooms were opened and had some furniture and other furnishings for view. I also found the servant's quarter interesting, with a very rare telephone from the era.