A Dream of Splendor || The Best Chinese Drama of 2022

Discover Chinese Dramas with LTL // A Dream of Splendor

Want to discover the very best Chinese Drama of 2022? Look no further than A Dream of Splendor!

Today we provide you with a complete review about the hugely popular C-Drama, introduce you to the cast and teach you some useful words along with way 😎

“The actors, the view, the plot, the shoot, the costume, the soundtrack and the martial arts are impressive. The chemistry between leads are undeniable. Not to mention how the female lead is so knowledgable, elegant and bold at the same time.

This is not just a romance drama but also covers feminism in the Song Dynasty.”

Quote taken from an avid watcher

DID YOU KNOW | The Chinese title of A Dream of Splendor is 梦华录 mèng huá lù.

The biggest and best surprise this year is that A Dream of Splendor was released on Tencent Video (a Chinese streaming site). We can therefore all enjoy its genius online!

A Dream of Splendor || Introduction

A Dream of Splendor || Main Characters

A Dream of Splendor || Why You Should Watch It

A Dream of Splendor || Useful Vocab

A Dream of Splendor || FAQ’s

A Dream of Splendor – Introduction

First, let’s take a quick look at what this show is about.

Here is the trailer to this C-Drama. What do you think? Tell us in the comments below.

Here are some of the key points about 梦华录.

  • In the Song Dynasty, there are three women, one of them is the owner of a tea shop who was abandoned by her lover. A businessman was considered to be of low social status.
  • The 2nd woman was a pariah. She thinks she can only rely on men to help her. She was often cheated and used by men.
  • The 3rd woman made great food and wants the best for her son. However, her husband also cheats on her, eventually divorcing her leading her to become suicidal.

What destiny will await the three of them?

You will soon realise this isn’t your typical cliché love story C-Drama.

Every episode is a classic, but I recommend episode 16 in particular where you can see the wonderful tea ceremony competition.

Episode 33 is also eye-catching. You can see fabulous dances and music comparable to the Spring Festival Gala.

A Dream of Splendor – Main Characters

Zhao Pan Er 赵盼儿 zhào pàn’er

This Chinese-American actress is known as Liu Yifei 刘亦菲 (Liú Yìfēi), but also goes by the name Crystal Liu.

Check out our blog about Mulan 2020 to watch more movies from Crystal Liu.

Crystal Liu also features in the 2020 remake of Mulan

Her father was convicted, so she had to become an official performer and a pariah since she was a child.

She studies hard and opens Zhao’s tea shop. She becomes very talented in making tea and providing top-quality tea ceremonies.

The show also emphasizes that Pan’er is not only well-versed in the world, delicate and even scheming, but also has an open-minded, kind and generous side, and the latter leads her to reach the top of her career.

Her qualities are strong.

She is so kind that she saved a man who had failed his exams several times and continued to care for him for three years.

She is so tolerant that she helps her friends over and over again.

She is so wise that forgives her lover’s father who kills her own father.

Gu Qianfan 顾千帆 gù qiānfān

Known as the living devil, Gu Qianfan is a commander of the capital security office.

He is smart but equally cruel. After meeting Zhao Pan’er, he starts gradually falling in love with her.

His father is insidious and has a bad reputation.

Gu Qianfan doesn’t want to take the same path.

Although his dad, Prime Minister Xiao, is not a good person, he is a good father.

He does everything for his son and wishes him nothing but the best.

Gu Qianfan is played by Chen Xiao 陈晓.

People say that Chen Xiao has stars in his eyes, and when he is acting, his eyes are full of tenderness and love.

Sun San niang 孙三娘 sūn sān niáng

Played by Liu Yan 柳岩.

If you have seen Liu Yan’s previous movies or TV series, you will know how subversive and successful the role she will play this time.

Sun Sanniang is a woman with a hard life. She is the daughter of a pig slaughterer. When Fu Xingui married her, he was so poor that he could not afford the dowry money. She killed pigs for others every day. It took two years to get the money together. She gave all the money to Fu Xingui, which made it possible for him to do business.

After several years of marriage, once her husband got rich, he started to cheat on her.

One thing that Sun Sanniang is doing better than Zhao Paner: she never felt inferior because of who she is.

Another thing I want to mention is that Sun Sanniang cares about her sisters very much, she is very forthright. Her cooking skills are very good and her dim sum is very delicate.

I admire Sun Sanniang’s attitude to love. She is divorced with a son, but she is brave enough to seek real love when she meets the one.

Song Yin Zhang 宋引章 sòng yǐnzhāng

Trust me, you are not alone if you dislike her at the very beginning!

This character is played by Lin Yun Er 林允儿.

She is very naive and is well taken care of by Zhao Pan’er.

Whilst she is well taken care of, she struggles to return the favour to others.

She was jealous of Zhao Pan’er and lives in her own world.

She relies heavily on a man to help her break away from her original identity.

But in time she blossoms.

She learns to be brave and strong. Good things come her way.

A Dream of Splendor has so many many impressive characters in truth.

Whilst we have only touched on three so far, please allow us to introduce two more:

  • 池蟠 chí pán
  • 陈廉 chén lián

On the surface, 池蟠 looks like a bully, but he is a pure and arrogant rich kid on the inside.

His actions and words reveal natural stupidity and cuteness, and he is the comedy of the whole play. His actions have been widely spread on the Internet and he has become a source of joy for netizens.

陈廉 gets along very well with Zhao Pan’er and other ladies.

Chen Lian always speaks with a smile. He is smart, cute, and insightful.

He often thinks one or two steps ahead of others and is called a “professional expert” by netizens.

A Dream of Splendor – Why You Should Watch It

Since its release in June 2022, it reached 1.5 billion views within 10 days!

DID YOU KNOW | The show has received rave reviews with a score 8.8/10 on Douban.

Watch A Dream of Splendor here – tell us what you think in the comments

The three female characters in the play all become independent and enjoy self-improvement after experiencing emotional betrayal. This kind of female independence is indeed very special.

As always another reason to watch A Dream of Splendor is because, as with any Chinese TV show, it provides great Chinese practice.

Nothing is dubbed and the accents are kind for foreigners wishing to learn. Of course, the content is deep and certainly not for beginners – but that doesn’t mean only advanced students should watch it.

Quite the opposite in fact…

You can watch it on Youtube with English subtitles and on Netflix where you can enjoy two sets of subtitles.

See how with this video guide

It’s also a very good opportunity to understand about life during the Song Dynasty.

You will learn about tea, dim sum, dancing, clothing and a whole lot more. Well worth it in our opinion.

A Dream of Splendor – Useful Vocab

Here are several useful words for you to learn so that you can gain a deeper understanding when watching.

  • 活阎罗 huó yánluó – The living devil
  • 皇城司 huáng chéng sī – The Captical security office
  • 茶百戏 chá bǎi xì – Tea art
  • 夜宴图 yèyàn tú Banquet illustration
  • 掌柜 zhǎngguì – Manager
  • 官家 guān jiā – Your Majesty
  • 贱民 jiànmín – Pariah
  • 东京 dōngjīng – The Eastern Capital
  • 茶坊 chá fāng – Teahouse
  • 妾身 qiè shēn – Me
  • 赵娘子 zhào niángzǐ – Ms Zhao
  • 果子  guǒzi – Dim sum
  • 婚约 hūnyuē – Engagement
  • 休书 xiū shū – Divorce letter


  • 盼儿 pàn er
  • 引章 yǐn zhāng
  • 招娣 zhāo dì

All of these female names mean the same thing – to be expecting a son.

That concludes our guide to A Dream of Splendor – one of the biggest TV shows to come out of China in 2022.

Have you seen it yet? What did you think? Tell us in the comments below.

Maybe you want us to review another show? Drop us a message and we’ll sit down and watch with our team!

Speaking of which, here are some other shows we think you’ll like also:

And if you want a one-stop area to find the best Chinese dramas…

Check out our huge list of Chinese Dramas available to watch now.

Improve your Mandarin with LTL Flexi Classes

A Dream of Splendor – FAQs

What is the Chinese title of A Dream of Splendor?

The Chinese title of A Dream of Splendor is 梦华录 mèng huá lù.

Where can I watch A Dream of Splendor?

You can watch A Dream of Splendor for free on YouTube and Netflix.

Does A Dream of Splendor have English subtitles?

Yes, it does.

How many episodes does A Dream of Splendor have?

There are 40 episodes in total.

Does A Dream of Splendor have a happy or sad ending?

We liked the ending but we don’t want to give any spoilers so we suggest you watch for yourselves.

We think you’ll enjoy it for sure!

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  1. Thanks for the post!

    1. Max Hobbs

      Pleasure 🙂 have you watched it yet?