There's only love at new Beijing supermarket

Tue Feb 9, 2010 1:06am EST
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BEIJING, China (Reuters Life!) - For Chinese singles in the market for love this Valentine's day, a Beijing supermarket may offer just what they're looking for.

The "I'm Looking For You" market opened in November 2009, for the China's unofficial "Singles Day" which is marked on the 11th of that month.

Since then, the supermarket has attracted more than 1,000 clients and successfully matched more than 50 couples.

The supermarket -- essentially a dating service that offers a venue where singles can meet -- only charges a 20 yuan ($3) registration fee.

Members list their names, ages, income and occupation, along with a picture, and this profile is available for others to view. They are also asked what they would like in a partner.

Gao Shan, the supermarket's manager, said the concept was inspired by people's need to meet in a safe, friendly and relaxing environment, and by the negative experiences some singles have had using Internet dating services.

"The love supermarket was not created to satisfy a holiday need," she said. "It was created so that singles can have the opportunity to leave behind their single life."

Many single Chinese complain that hectic work and school schedules in the highly competitive society leave them with little time to socialize, Gao said.

Clients such as Qu Hui, a 25-year-old teacher, said the supermarket had given her hope to find Mr. Right, as well as some much-needed friends.   Continued...