Suzhou is famous for its gardens. This is the second time we visit a garden in Suzhou. We planned to visit some places none of us had visited, but finally, we chose the Zhuo Zheng Yuan or the Hamble Administrator’s Garden, which all of us visited already. We picked it because we want to refresh our memories of Suzhou Gardens, and this garden is among the best.
Suzhou Garden in New York
When Wendy and I visited the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, we saw a replica of Suzhou Garden in the exhibition. It was very interesting to see a place with so strong Chinese characters in the heart of New York. It raised our couriosity to visit the garden again. We often ignore what is around us until we find it again in an unfamiliar environment.
Photograph by Jian Shuo Wang. Taken in the New York Metropolitain Museum of Art in New York
Please note: The image above is not a real Suzhou garden. It is a replica in New York.
Inside Zhuo Zheng Yuan
It is a nice experience to visit the Zhuo Zheng Yuan again. My understanding of the garden is better than the previous time, after visiting many museums and galleries. I still cannot tell why, exactly, this garden is so unique and beautiful, I just feel more at home this time.
© Jian Shuo Wang
© Jian Shuo Wang
About Suzhou Garden
Here is what my favorite architect I.M.Pei said about Suzhou Garden:
How to look at nature is also very important. I remember the windows we have in the Suzhou gardens. Sometimes they are in the shape of a vase, sometimes a bamboo bush, sometimes a fan. When we look out from our office windows on Madison Avenue, we want to see all the way to East River. In China, land is not that plentiful; there are so many people there. Gardens need not be very big. They cannot be big and all-encompassing. These windows are more like picture frames. If you go to the Metropolitan Museum here, you will see a replica of one of those gardens. Beyond the window there are some bamboo shoots, and behind the bamboo is a white wall. The distance between the window and the wall is only about five or six feet. I think it creates a very satisfying picture. Out of these ideas, one can begin to search the vernacular. That was how I started. 
It is exactly what I feel (but didn’t find out by myself).
The administration fee is 50 RMB. Parking outside the garden is 5 RMB for one day. It is near the Suzhou Railway Station.