Dear fellow gentlemen of Kunming. I am reaching out to you in a very important matter via this computer machine. I know you are used to handling your correspondence with the usage of pigeons, but please bear with me.
My travels trough the middle kingdom has finally taken its toll on me and my travel companion, the duke of Holtshire and we have decided to settle down in Kunming for a bit of recreation. As in any unknown area a gentleman must establish some knowledge for basic survival.
Therefore I reach out to you searching for the mere essentials: A decent pipe store, I have lost my entire collection due to an unfortunate incident in Nepal, a tailor that can put together a basic collection of three piece suits and a store to acquire fine Irish singe malt.
I also would like to know if any gentlemen reading have tried the local range of sprits and could recommend something for the western palate.
I am looking forward to reading your replies by telegraph or on this world wide interweb.
Pipes of all kinds are available at Tobacco www.gokunming.com/en/listings/item/tob_32403/tobacco the best tailor I know of recently sold her shop and I have no idea where to get a decent Irish single malt whiskey in Kunming. If you can make it to Dali, there is an amazing selection of single malt whiskeys at the new-and-improved Lazy Book www.gokunming.com/en/listings/item/laz_250/
There's a Local Chinese gentleman nearby who appears to have manufactured his own using some kind of metal pipe, the type used in plumbing. He's a really nice old guy. He might knock you one up and there are plenty of WCs being torn up. Sure it would suit you.
Lazy Book does have single malt whiskey, but i believe they're better equipped in the single malt whisky department. hic.
tailors: i know of small old-school tailoring outfits on Longxiang Jie (龙翔街), Beimen Jie (北门街) and Jianshe Lu (建设路) that will likely be able to sort you out, with a bit of careful guidance. i recommend donning khaki suit, pith helmet, and yelling (with a modicum of spittle ejection) - this ensures the natives never fail to understand.
Oh dear, has hedgepig once again fallen off the hedgerow?
Dear Mr. Cottonwood
My my, if you fashion yourself a cosmopolitan gent, then you may decide to adopt a "when in Rome" tack. The local custom amongst many a resident of this fine Yunnan prefecture is to use water to dilute smoke in a device known in Chinese as "Yan Tong" 烟筒, or as uncouth Yankees know them, "bongs".
Many of them, as well as Arabian hookahs and all manner of exotic pipes can be located in the Bird and Flower market, a popular destination near Nanping street and Wu Yi Lu. The market can be found on the map of any Lonely Planet guide that mentions Kunming.
More traditional pipery can be found on Wen Lin street (文林街), amonst the Western cafes. Similarly, on that street you can find many popular brands of Scotch, but life here is difficult for true connoisseurs, so I defer to the judgement of other posters.
Most proper regards,
Many definitions of "gentleman." Sounds like you fit the one
"...farts in the bathtub and bites the bubbles."