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China Unveils Massive Building — With Fake Beach, Fake Sun

The Chinese are calling the New Century Global Center, which opened in late June in Chengdu, the world's largest stand-alone structure.

Inside, visitors can shop, stay at either of two 1,000-room luxury hotels, go to a skating rink, or even a fake beach or fake Mediterranean village all lit by a fake sun.

It isn't the world's tallest building — that honor belongs to Dubai's Burj Khalifa; nor is it the largest — that's the Boeing Everett Factory in Everett, Wash. What the New Century Global Center appears to be is the world's biggest building by floor space. Just how big is it?

Well, inside it you can fit...

...20 of these

four of these..

and three of these ...

Now, if the name Chengdu, China, sounds familiar, it's probably because you recall it as the scene of the devastating earthquake in 2008, which killed nearly 70,000 people. Much of that area has been rebuilt in the five years after the quake — with mixed results.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Peruvians Love Their Chicha Street Art. The Government ... Not So Much

Walk down a street in Peru and you'll likely see an example of the glow-in-the-dark posters and murals. Lots of people love them. But the upper crust — and the government — aren't impressed.
NPR

Tea-Infused Sweets: Chocolate + Jasmine Tea Is A Match Made In Heaven

Smoky and floral brews can provide a kick of flavor to desserts, especially when blended with chocolate. Pastry chef Naomi Gallego shows us a few tricks for surprising the palate with tea.
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America's First Ladies

They walk a tricky line: closest adviser to the President of the United States and hostess in chief. A new book examines the evolution of the role of first lady of the United States.

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E-Cigarettes and Vaping

Last week, the D.C. Council voted to designate e-cigarettes and "similar vapor products containing nicotine" as tobacco products. That means that their sales tax will jump from the regular 5.75% sales tax to the 70% tax that's tacked onto sales of products like cigarettes and cigars. We explore what this means for the evolving public health debate surrounding e-cigarettes.

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