A buzzing retail scene is another reason to love Guangzhou. At the heart of Tianhe, the city’s most modern district, is TaiKoo Hui, within the same building as Mandarin Oriental, Guangzhou. Here all the most fashionable brands can be found, including Burberry and Gucci. Not far away is the flashy Parc Central, Guangzhou’s ‘stadium for retail’, where brands including Apple and Tesla have their flagship stores. Designed by Benoy, the architecture references the Chinese symbol for peace, harmony and fortune in its steel monocoque roof structure, while the glass canopies are supported by tree-like columns sympathetic to the green surroundings. If you’re looking for souvenirs, visit the tucked-away Jade Street, near Shangxiajiu Pedestrian Street. Here, as the name suggests, you’ll find hundreds of small shops selling jade items, from bracelets and rings to paperweights and vases. For traditional Chinese tea, try Nanfang Tea Market. The area covers 20,000 square metres, so you’re sure to find a tea set you like, plus a tightly pressed block of tea to take home.