This sign sits in what is the official China Town of Portland, which isn’t actually where the Chinese people of Portland live. It is attached to a somewhat mediocre (that is being generous) noodle house and was in danger of falling down through disrepair. The restaurant originally opened in 1928 but was abandoned in 2005 during a period when China Town became a ghost town. A new owner came on the scene and realized how many tourists take pictures of the sign, so decided to renovate it and make it a part of his new venture.
The city of Portland kicked in a significant part of the cost to repair the sign, and ironically if it were a new sign it would have been illegal based on current laws – so they had to repair the original – that contained over 100lbs of rust. It was proudly rehung in 2010.
So what does Hung Far Low mean? Apparently it means “almond blossom fragrance” in the Chinese dialect of Taisan, but it still remains one of those quirky things that makes a lot of people snicker, and makes Portland, well Portland.
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