Taiwan's VVG Something one of world's 20 most beautiful bookstores
Los Angeles, Feb. 1 (CNA)
The bookstore in Taipei's eastern district is "almost utilitarian but filled with simple old-world grace," according to Flavorwire.
"This store is a little like what we might imagine our ideal ship's main cabin to look like," it added.
Flavorwire did not give a specific ranking to each bookstore on its list. Only four Asian bookstores -- VVG Something, Daikanyama T-site in Tokyo, as well as Bookworm and Poplar Kid's Republic, both in Beijing -- made the list.
With online bookstores such as Amazon having taken over the publishing world and bookstores closing one after another, things can sometimes seem a little grim for the bricks-and-mortar booksellers of the world.
But Flavorwire said there are bookstores so beautiful that they are worth getting out of the house or even the country to visit "whether you need a new hardcover or not."
"We can't overestimate the importance of bookstores -- they're community centers, places to browse and discover, and monuments to literature all at once --so we've put together a list of the most beautiful bookstores in the world, from Belgium to Japan to Slovakia," the website said.
Rounding out the top 20 list is Librería El Ateneo Grand Splendid in Buenos Aires, Argentina -- a majestic converted 1920s movie palace which uses theater boxes for reading rooms and draws thousands of tourists every year.
Also high on the list are Selexyz Bookstore in Maastricht, Holland, which is a gorgeous converted Dominican church, Plural Bookshop in Bratislava, Slovakia, Shakespear & Company in Paris,Cook and Book in Brussels, The Bookabar Bookshop in Rome and two bookstores in California -- The Last Bookstore in Los Angeles and Bart's Books in Ojai.
(By Oscar Wu and Sofia Wu)