Many foreign entrepreneurs will find it easiest to visit IKEA, where you can pick what you want without hassle and without having to speak Chinese. You choose what you need, and they will arrange the delivery. But many believe that the quality of their furniture isn’t great.

An alternative is to go to a local furniture store. Usually you walk in, tell them what you want (this is one of those instances where you will have to be good at either Chinese or sign language, because it’s unlikely the owner will be able to speak English), and they will pull out a bunch of catalogues. You tell them the pieces you are interested in, and they will calculate the price. Then you pay, and they deliver a few days later.

If you are considering decorating or renovating a restaurant or a shop, you can, of course, choose to do it by yourself, or choose to hire an interior designer.

For useful information on designer contacts, local store information, and second-hand furniture, please refer to the Outfitting Your Store or Office chapter of How to Start a Business in Taiwan!