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  • Publish Date:2015-08-31



  • Chinese Name: 破屋
  • Located At: Tainan City (Southern Taiwan)
  • Year of Establishment: 2009
  • Did You Know That…?
  • The café took its name from the British punk band "Wire,” an influential rock band during the 1970s and 1980s. As a big fan of rock music, the owner feels that a café should have a punk, hardcore, and experimental spirit similar to that of the rock group. By naming it the WIRE, the owner hopes to introduce the rock band as well as more indie music to mainstream music listeners.
  • English Address:
  • No. 5, Lane 132, Section 1, Minsheng Rd., West Central District, Tainan City, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
  • Opening Hours:
    • Monday-Fridays, 6pm - 11pm
    • Weekends, 10am - 2am
    • Closed on Tuesdays
  • Contact: +886-6-228-7219
  • Site: Facebook

Located in a historical small valley in southern Taiwan, the four-storey house offers food and drinks as well as film screenings on its first and second floors, while the third floor is used as a free exhibition space. Since its opening in 2009, owner Lin Wen-bin (林文濱) has held live concerts and art exhibitions for people to share and appreciate music and the arts.

From ruins to café

Though its English name is the WIRE, the café is also called "Po Wu” in Chinese, which refers to a broken house. It indeed looks like an abandoned ruin from the outside; however, once one walks into the building, the interior décor and the choice of music playing inside immediately transform the old building into a hipster café.

As a resident of Tainan city, Lin found this old building one day when walking around the valley region that was once prosperous under the Qing dynasty. Built more than 80 years ago, the building was originally a printing factory, but was abandoned for decades alongside a line of demolished architecture. Lin, who is also a vintage lover, decided to give the ruin a new lease on life.

Now fully renovated and refurnished, the café is decorated with traditional Chinese furniture and vintage items. Lin keeps the original structure and design of the architecture such as red bricks, which characterize traditional Taiwanese buildings. For Lin, it is important to preserve the original architecture as much as possible; he opposes the act of exploiting recent vintage trends, of which many old buildings are renovated to become a money-spinner instead of being appreciated for the historical context housed within.

Space for arts and culture

In addition, Lin had transformed another old building into a lounge bar prior to the WIRE in 2005. Taking its name from another prominent English rock band, "The Kinks,” the bar serves drinks while promoting numerous cultural activities and music events. In 2008, it received a prize from the Foundation of Historic City Conservation and Regeneration based in Tainan.

Against the lush and historic backdrop of Tainan, the WIRE provides a collection of music records and books for visitors to dig through; it also serves as a base in the southern Taiwan for artists to promote themselves. The café brings together members of the public to enjoy film and music, and encourages individuals to discover the world of arts and culture.