One of the Czech Republic’s most-visited cities is being paid the ultimate compliment: Chinese electronics giant Huawei is currently building an exact replica of Český Krumlov at its headquarters in Dongguan, just outside of Shenzhen.
According to reports from iDnes.cz, the telecommunications company is in the midst of creating replicas of twelve historic European sites its company complex.
In addition to Český Krumlov (dubbed “Činský Krumlov” by the Czech press), Granada, Verona, Paris, Budapest, and Bruges are also on the list of European cities being reenvisioned on the Huawei campus.
Construction reportedly began in 2015.
On-air footage by Chinese television offers a glimpse at a detailed replica of what appears to be Český Krumlov chateau (minus the bear moat), which, along with the historical center of the Southern Bohemian town, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. A tram connects staff to buildings.
The Dongguan, headquarters is reportedly 9 square kilometers and accommodates up to 25,000 Huawei employees.
Went to Huawei’s new campus today in Dongguan, a place just outside of Shenzhen. It was insane.
-Space for 24,000 people
– Has various “towns” based on European cities
-started being built in 2015, still not complete yet
– tram connects the “towns” pic.twitter.com/bbR7pn4enJ
— Arjun Kharpal (@ArjunKharpal) January 15, 2019
Český Krumlov mayor Dalibor Cardo recently weighed in on the topic: “I heard about it when they started preparing it. The fact that they [are] building it without at least contacting the city does not sit well with me.” He adds that despite these misgivings he still takes the Chinese building project lightly.
Chinese tourists are the largest segment of visitors to Český Krumlov and growing.
Over 410,000 people visited Český Krumlov Castle last year. The castle area and the Baroque garden are said to attract roughly 1 million visitors annually. The center of Český Krumlov is visited by up to 2 million tourists a year.