In October this year M1NT will open its first private club in mainland China, on the 20,000 square foot penthouse floor of the M1NT Tower in Shanghai (currently still called the Cross Tower, on Fuzhou Lu close to the Bund). The 24-story building used to be owned by Goldman Sachs, but they sold it last year for USD 150 million, and it is now being upgraded to a Grade A office space with the M1NT premises on the top floor.
The concept of M1NT is that the club is owned by shareholders who are also members, with the business model being that ownership encourages patronage and will in turn reduce promotional expenses. In total a maximum of 500 shareholders will be accepted, plus a total of 2000 ordinary members who pay annual fees. The model was successfully launched in Hong Kong, where M1NT opened its club in 2006 on 108 Hollywood Road (Central).
My wife and I had lunch with two people from Investor Relations at M1NT last week, and we visited the future club. I have to say hat I was very impressed by what I saw. First of all is the location absolutely stunning. From the club you have a complete view over the Huangpu river and the Pudong skyline on one side (see the picture on top of this post, taken from the building), and over Puxi in the direction of People’s Square on the other side. The penthouse floor itself is also quite amazing, because the ceilings are almost 7 meters high. Something you do not expect in an office tower! With windows up to 6 meters high you have an obstructed 360 degree view of the whole city.
When you enter the first thing you will see is a 17-meter long hammerhead shark fish tank, behind which the private shareholder lounges are located. Walking past the sharks you will find the big cocktail lounge area and one of the largest bars in Asia. Past the bar you will enter the dining area where head chef Ian Pengelley (of London’s Gilgamesh fame) will be able to show off his talents in an open kitchen setting. The restaurant will feature Pan Asian Cuisine, a fusion of Chinese, Malay, Thai, Indian and Japanese cuisines.
The place also has a rooftop terrace that will open in April next year. There you can lounge on deck chairs or watch the city below you from a big jacuzzi, in a setting surrounded by palm trees. It certainly seems like a great place to bring business guests or for a summer night party. If it becomes as nice as I imagine it will be, it could be a big hit. This is the kind of high-end place that Shanghai is still lacking, and I look forward to seeing it once it opens!
If you are interested to become a shareholder you can find more information about the application process on M1NT Shanghai’s website.