A couple of days ago I had a meeting close to the former Tudou office next to the Suzhou Creek, so I decided to walk over and see what had become of the building. The street in front of the office was still basically the same: no cars allowed and quite nicely decorated with lots of trees and grass next to the water.
But when I arrived at the former entrance gate I realized the office was now turned into a youth hostel, the Shanghai SOHO International Youth Hostel. So I decided to just walk in and snap a couple of pictures.
The entrance area is also still pretty much the same, maybe a few more plants now and I also think the outside tables and chairs were not there before.
The picture below shows the former reception of Tudou. Interesting is that the Tudou graffiti on the wall is still there!
In the rest of the building there is still some graffiti from Tudou times, but most has been repainted after the hostel moved in.
The stairs to the Tudou restaurant are still there, including some of the original graffiti, but the boxing ball is gone. The roof top terrace was also still there, but I could not enter without a key card.
The rest of the hostel had been converted in a lot of small rooms. The place looked pretty clean to me, from my backpacking times in the mid 1990s I had expected a different kind of hostel (it’s probably good I did not blog yet at that time, I would not be proud of some of the places where I managed to sleep during that time).
The picture below is actually the window in Grace’ former office. The ugly prison-like window bars are still there, I guess it was cheaper to keep them there than to replace them.
Always interesting to see what happens to buildings when companies move out. I sort of expected a creative company or an ad agency to move into the premises, but I guess a youth hostel is also a good fit for the large space. Likely none of the guests has any clue that this is the place where Tudou grew from a small start-up (after first having offices in Xujiahui and later in the Si Hang building) to a really big player in the Chinese Internet industry.
If you want to stay in the former Tudou office in downtown Shanghai you can do so for almost nothing: dorm beds cost RMB 55 per night and rooms without a window start at RMB 199 (for a room with window you pay RMB 100 more). You can book the hostel here.