Nanjing opens 'historic site' government house to public
Nanjing, capital of east China's Jiangsu Province, on Wednesday held its first open house to allow the public into its government compound, which is a renowned historic relic site.
About 400 Nanjing residents and friends from home and abroad visited the historical buildings with volunteer guidance by government officials and staff.
Yang Weize, the city's Communist Party secretary, and Miao Ruilin, the acting mayor, delivered wishes for New Year's Day and guided visitors to appreciate the major historical buildings, which now serve as office buildings and an auditorium for government institutions.
"This is the first open house day. It represents our first step to open such a historical site to the public, which contains and has witnessed the history of Nanjing," said Yang Weize.
During the tour, visitors enjoyed hot tea and received New Year's gifts, including a hand-painted map and introduction to the government house site, as well as postcards.
Starting on Jan. 1 this year, Nanjing will open the government house each Jan. 1, May 1 and Oct. 1 to the public for free visits after registration.
The current government compound is in a historical site. It was set up in the 1930s and served as the examination institute of the republican government in Nanjing.
It was renowned as a "garden-style government house" featuring well-designed buildings that combine both Western-style and classical Chinese architecture.
It began serving as the government house for government organs in 1949. In June 2001, it was listed as a national key cultural relics protection unit.