Named after the royal reading pavilion in the Forbidden City, Nanshufang is the cultural heart of Amanyangyun. Dedicated to Chinese art forms and the pursuit of knowledge, it is a cultural centre housed within the most architecturally impressive antique buildings to have made the journey from Fuzhou. Enhanced with furniture crafted from the nanmu wood characteristic of Ming interiors, Nanshufang is a modern-day recreation of the scholars’ studios of 17th-century China’s literati – a space to learn, contemplate and practise traditional crafts such as calligraphy, music and painting, or to watch one of Amanyangyun’s frequent Kunqu Opera performances. Across a landscaped courtyard, nine gracious private rooms host traditional tea and incense ceremonies, while the Emperor Tree stands near the entrance – a compelling visual reminder of the value of maintaining a connection with history. This is why Amanyangyun’s guests are each invited to nourish the tree with water when they arrive – an act reflecting the importance of nurturing the past to enrich the future.