Yesterday I spent a leisurely Sunday in Shanghai, and maybe the things I did might inspire others as well. I started off by sleeping late, always a good start of a lazy Sunday. Then we went to the new Hyatt on the Bund (199, Huangpu Lu – on the North Bund) for a very nice brunch. The hotel just opened, and the staff did not really know the word brunch yet… They initially sent us to their Chinese a la carte restaurant. However, on the second floor there is a huge lunch/brunch buffet, with a Chinese section (incl. dim sum), a Japanese section (incl. fresh sashimi) and a Western section. And of course I should not forget the dessert section (incl. pancakes and many kinds of ice cream). All excellent quality. There were not many people yet, but once the brunch buffet becomes better known you might have to make reservations. The only negative thing is that you don’t have a view from the restaurant, not sure why they did not put it on a higher floor.
After the brunch we drove over to the new lifestyle and design center in Hongkou, in the former slaughterhouse, called 1933. There was a design exhibition going on, so we could check out the whole building. Amazing architecture, a bit Gaudi style. Very un-Chinese, and worth to check it out. If you are in the design or creative industry and looking for an office, this might be a good place to go. Very special and sure to impress your clients. Several bars and restaurants will open in the building soon, among others one run by David Laris. Address: 29, Shajing Lu. Some pictures can be found here.
The last part of the afternoon we spent at Taikang Lu. This street has changed a lot over the past year or so. Not only has one side completely disappeared and is now a construction site, but also a lot more of the backstreets are converted into bars, boutique shops, art galleries and coffee shops. It’s worth to check it out and have a coffee here (for some pictures see here). This is how Xintiandi should have been, because here the houses are still real (but you also have the occasional smell of communal toilets…). And of course food and drinks are a lot cheaper here than in Xintiandi. The only problem is the parking if you come by car, because there are no official parking spaces in the area. You can park on Taikang Lu, where there is enough space, but it’s officially not allowed and most of the cars that parked there on Sunday afternoon got a parking ticket.
Wow.. Marc, these are exactly the places I visited during the past few weeks. Took a couple of pictures at the slaughterhouse on the Pecha Kucha Night (there were lots of Dutch designers in the event) but I haven’t uploaded them yet. So I’m not the only one who finds this huge monster slightly in a style of Gaudi’s work!
I just hope Taikang Lu will be a bit cleaner after some years. It’d be a nice thing to have stylish cafes/galleries mixed with the local neighbourhood, but given that these establishments are F&B related, hygiene is a concern! I was in a pretty good mood while strolling there, but my mom kept complaining about the dirt so we took a cab and dined in a very lovely and cosy restaurant: Marrakech 🙂
I often hang out at Tai Kang Lu and dont think there is such a hygene problems. At least in some places where you can see how they prepare the food. However, the main attraction for me is the shops. With places like Vervia Tai Kang Lu is a million miles away from Xintiandi and should def. be one of the places Shanghai plugs more.
Your picture of 1933 is really great! I have used your image for a travel website I am helping to build for Mediamatic.net here in Amsterdam. Please check out how your link was used and you accreditation here: http://travel.mediamatic.net/page/3282/en
If you would like to look around the website, give any feedback or ideas, your input would be very appreciated! Thanks again, and I hope you are well in Shanghai!
Ali at Mediamatic