Inside the Grace Hill Wedding Chapel

Grace Hill 麗庭莊園

Grace Hill 麗庭莊園 (pinyin: Lìtíng Zhuāngyuán) is a former wedding venue situated in an industrial park in Nèihú District 內湖區, Taipei 台北. It opened in 2005 under the management of the Zhǎngxìng Wedding Company 長興婚禮事業有限公司, an outfit keen to disrupt the local market with a larger, more extravagant space for weddings and other events. The business struggled at first but became more widely known after it was featured in television series, music videos, and the news. In 2007 the space was leased to Dears Brain 迪詩, a Japanese wedding company hoping to enter the Taiwanese luxury wedding market. The original owners took a step back, ceding control of day-to-day operations to Japanese management, and the business continued to grow over the next several years.

The abandoned Grace Hill wedding chapel from the street.

Behind the scenes conflict was brewing between the two companies—and in 2013 the Japanese company declined to renew the leasing contact. The Taiwanese owners were not able to find anyone else to manage the business and the property was effectively abandoned. From what I’ve read the property has been put up for auction at different times but there were no buyers. As of 2017, when most of these photos were shot, the complex was completely derelict, with no barrier to entry from the street. The impressive scale and appearance of the site combined with its accessible location and complete lack of security has made it a popular destination for graffiti writers and urban explorers.

Around back at the Grace Hill complex. The building on the left houses the dining hall.
Inside the wedding chapel, sloping pillars rising on either side.
Reception area.
Flooded basement.
Champagne at the bar.
An impressive trash collection. Someone was living here for a while, or perhaps they were only using it for storage.
The former dining hall.
One of the rooftops is covered with grass. This view is looking north toward the mountains of Yangmingshan.
Overlooking the Grace Hill wedding complex. Graffiti, a rare sight in Taiwanese ruins, is plainly visible.
Grace Hill is almost due east of Songshan Airport so you’ll often see planes passing overhead.

Most of these photos were shot on a return visit to the site. My first foray to Grace Hill came in the depths of the witching hour, after I went out riding one night, restless with insomnia and hungry for adventure. On impulse I crossed a bridge into Neihu to scope out reports of an abandoned wedding chapel. I arrived to find the entire complex case in shadows, a nocturnal landscape soon revealed to my camera lens.

The ominous outline of the wedding chapel at night. If you look closely you can discern a cross on the door.
Around back at Grace Hill after dark.

For more about this place I highly recommend checking out two thorough articles by Josh Ellis and Tobias at Only Forward. If you search for the Chinese name you’ll find more blogs and news reports; there’s really nothing secret or obscure about Grace Hill.

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