Interesting sight to see. I was walking to the Silk Museum and noticed this place with people sitting inside facing a series of numbers (most of them red) on a large wall panel running down the length of the room. I got talking to a guy from Malaysia who filled me in by saying people were sitting here in order to check how their stock was doing on the stock market. I've never seen a place like this before and so it was an intriguing sight to see.
Panmen Gate Park
The park has 3 tourist spots: Pan gate, Wu bridge and RuiGuang tower. Pan gate is the only preserved "water-land" gate of the old suzhou city (used to be 6 of them). Although what you see today in the park are mostly new constructions (only the gate, the bridge are still the old, the towel is almost rebuilt), it is a nice place to visit and see about the old citie's gate system.
On special occasions, the park opens at night. I went to the night festival of welcoming the god of wealthy (1/5 luna calendar) in that garden and the experience is quite fun. Many suzhou gardens provide night garden options and even performances at night in the gardens. When I was young, the night gardens are only open to foreigners, I don't know how things are now. To me, night garden is a pretty good experience.
There is also one of suzhou's finest hotels "Wu Men Shareton"(http://www.sheraton-suzhou.com/about.htm) sits besides the place. The hotel takes on a tranditional look but has advanced services and features. Should be a good stay if your are not on budget travel.
Suzhou - Gardens and Canals
Dubbed the Venice of the East, most of the canals have been replaced by roads. Yet the gardens are still there to lure tourists like me to go into the inner worlds that rich Chinese merchants and retired officials have created to soothe the soul and contemplate the world.
A great way to understand Chinese architecture, landscaping and fengshui through guided garden tours. If you tried to visit all the gardens, the admission fees can add up but if you are in Suzhou, do not miss visiting as many gardens as you can. But more important is besides taking the photos, to just sit in the gardens and see the world goes by as the minutes ticked (turn off your mobile) and the day goes by.
Most people do a day trip to Suzhou, if you stay overnight, do visit one of the gardens at night and see the garden world in a different light with Chinese classical music in the background and the moon smiling above.