Known once as the Paris of the East
, today Shanghai is the largest city in China and home to over 20 million people. From its origins as a small fishing and textiles town, it has burgeoned into a buzzing centre of commerce culture and design. To find the best of what sophisticated Shanghai has to offer who better to ask than one of the city's best concierges?
joined The Peninsula Shanghai
in July 2009 as Assistant Chief Concierge and has recently been promoted to Chief Concierge Simon started his career in the hospitality industry as a Club Concierge in another hotel before joining The Peninsula Shanghai. The award winning concierge has his finger on the pulse of the city, if you want to know the best places to eat, shop or have a glass of champagne, Simon is your man. With the help of his team Simon offers this guide to the best of Shanghai.
Din Tai Fung
Originating from Taipei, this restaurant has earned an excellent reputation for Taiwanese cuisine in Mainland China. The tender, juicy crab roe-filled dumplings are accompanied by a tasty mouthful of broth with each bite, and the chicken and beef soup complement the palate perfectly. Friendly staff enhance the overall dining experience.
Unit 11A, South Block, Xintiandi, 123 Xingye Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6385 8378
Rustic mansion architecture and swathes of semi-transparent fabric hanging from the dining room ceiling create a sense of intimacy in which to devour delicious angel hair pasta, paellas, and delectable morsels of lamb. The modern Iberian menu is equally divided between tapas and appetisers, rice, pastas and desserts, with several wines by the glass.
20 Donghu Lu (near Huaihai Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 5404 5757
Housed in a 1930-styled Shanghai mansion, Fu 1088 serves exquisite Shanghainese authentic dishes, along with impressive French options. A minimum food charge of RMB 300 per head is applied.
375 Zhenning Road, by Yuyuan Road
Tel: +86 (21) 5239 7878
Haiku by Hatsune
First started in Beijing, Haiku by Hatsune in Shanghai also attracts an enthusiastic expatriate and local crowd who love their California rolls as much as they love looking good against the minimalist décor.
28B Taojiang Lu (near Hengshan Lu), Xuhui
Tel: +86 (21) 6445 0021
This restaurant's stylish Art Deco interior adds a touch of modern class to a historic corner. Serving French cuisine in a traditional way, oyster naige and duck done two ways are the signature dishes and crème caramel is a family recipe. 137 Fuzhou Lu (near Jiangxi Zhong Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6321 0586
Jesse has a reputation for serving the most authentic Shanghainese cuisine in town. Stepping into this cosy, perpetually crowded dining room is like stepping into a local home. The excellent local fare attracts expats, locals and tourists alike.
41, Tianping Lu (near Huaihai Lu), Xuhui
Tel: +86 (21) 6282 9260
Kee Club first made its debut in Hong Kong and is frequently visited by VIPs and celebrities. Nestled in a restored 1920s villa, it comprises grand salons, abstract art and a verandah terrace.
796 Huaihai Road, by Maoming Road
Tel: +86 (21) 3395 0888
Sir Elly's Terrace at Peninsula Shanghai
Lost Heaven Yunnan Cuisine
The exotic menu of Lost Heaven brings culinary surprises to diners. Dark, rich colours and romantic spotlighting provide the perfect atmosphere.
38 Gaoyou Lu (near Fuxing Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6433 5126
Lynn Modern Shanghai Cuisine
This stylish restaurant serves a modern version of Shanghainese cuisine within an Art Deco-inspired ambiance. The clean flavours and light-handed preparation of contemporary Shanghainese fare provide a welcome contrast to the dark coloured décor.
99-1 Xikang Road (near Ninjing Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6247 0101
M on the Bund
This famous Bund-side restaurant is definitely worth a try. M's inspired menu offers a combination of European, Middle Eastern and North American dishes. Salted leg of lamb, suckling pig and M's pavlova are the signature dishes one shouldn't miss.
7/F, No.5 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6350 9988
Chef Brad Turley puts on his sombrero and creates fresh, healthy and delicious Mexican comida. One may even be compelled to get up and do a little Mexican hat dance at the end of the meal. Margaritas of various flavours are also available.
2/F, Shanghai Grand Plaza, Club House, 568 Julu Lu (near Shaanxi Lu), Jing An
Tel: +86 (21) 6289 6889
Chef Dan Segall is known for his "free Asian cuisine". The restaurant commands views of The Bund from 24 storeys above. A stylish interior and show kitchen completes the experience. Vanilla-cured salmon with Thai basil and pickled celery, and grilled cod with miso and lime are Segall's signature dishes.
24/F 318 Fuzhou Lu (near Shandong Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6391 2811
Mr and Mrs Bund
A modern French restaurant by Paul Pairet serving French favourites with humble service. 250 classic dishes and 32 wines by the glass are available for diners to choose from.
6/F, Bund 18, Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6323 9898
Set in industrial warehouse décor, this cool Japanese restaurant is decorated with polished cement, black fixtures, dark wood tables and mezzanine seating.
803 Julu Lu (near Fumin Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 5404 5252
Casual Sichuan fare that includes the traditional specialities and modern renditions of the spicy classics. The two-storey restaurant and lounge is located on a popular stretch of the French Concession.
30 Donghu Lu, (near Huaihai Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 5404 1235
Villa du Lac
A lakeside jewel with world-renowned chef Justin Quek at the helm. Truly one of Shanghai's most beautiful Chinese restaurants serving Yangzhou palace cuisine.
383 Huangpi Nan Lu, (near Xingye Lu), Xintiandi
Tel: +86 (21) 6387 6387
Designed by Tony Chi, this chic Shanghainese restaurant is a reinterpretation of an old tea house. It is nestled in a traditional, slated roofed shikumen.
House 6, North Block Xintiandi, 338 Huangpi Nan Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6311 2323
Yi Long Court
Taking the theme of a 1930's Shanghai nobleman's house, this restaurant offers authentic Cantonese cuisine with six private dining rooms and a signature Peninsula Chinese Chefs's Table. Michelin-star chef Tang Chi Keung is at the helm of the restaurant.
2/F, The Peninsula Shanghai, No.32 The Bund, 32, Zhongshan Dong Yi Road
Tel: +86 (21) 2327 2888 Extension 6742
Stunning views of The Bund from the patio have helped make this one of the city's most popular bars. Bartenders set the mood every night, mixing an assortment of high-end cocktails against a soundtrack of minimal techno and deep house.
7/F, 18 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu (near Nanjing Dong Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6339 1199
This high-end jazz club and restaurant located in Xintiandi has all the elements of a good night out: food, drinks, music and dancing. A mature crowd that is interested in good tunes.
Building 15, Xintiandi North Block, Lane 181 Taicang Lu (near Huangpi Nan Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 5382 8998
D & G Martini Bar
Based on the concept of the bar in the flagship Milan store, Dolce & Gabbana's Martini Bar offers a wide variety of cocktails amidst high-fashion couture.
1/F, 6 The Bund, 6 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6339 1200
Based on a Hong Kong venue, Drop has become a trendy place to hang out over the past ten years.
55 Yuan Ming Yuan Lu, near Beijing Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6329 3718
Probably the coolest lighting system in town, with top Japanese DJs frequently spinning at the decks.
66 Yuyao Lu (near Xikang Lu)
Tel: Tel: +86 (21) 5213 0707
Exposed ceiling pipes, long drapes, floor-to-ceiling windows, and a well-stocked bar lend this place a cool, trendy vibe. Designed to be your regular neighbourhood bar where you'll feel free to kick up your heels and down a few Brazilian cocktails.
No. 748 Julu Lu (near Fumin Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6289 9108
One of the best-known and most popular mid- to high-end clubs in Shanghai, music at Muse 2 rotates between hip hop/mash-up, techno and house on any given night, and the club also hosts a fairly regular stream of Top 100 DJs on special occasions.
4/F, 283 Huai Hai Zhong Lu, near Huangpi Nan Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 6288 6222
Salon de Ning
The third in the collection of Salon de Ning outlets at The Peninsula Hotels. Resembling an elegant drawing room in a private residence in Shanghai in the 1930s, the bar and lounge offer a range of signature cocktails, light meals and occasional dancing in the evening.
Basement, The Peninsula Shanghai, No. 32 The Bund, 32 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu
Tel: +86 (21) 2327 2888
Housed in the French Concession in the former Soong family mansion, the tasteful bar, lounge and garden are consistently packed with a delightful crowd of expatriates.
11 Dongping Lu (near Hengshan Lu)
Tel: + 86 (21) 6474 6628
Sir Elly's Terrace
Before or after dinner on the 13th Floor of The Peninsula Shanghai, cocktails, soft music and twinkling lights all spell romance at Sir Elly's Terrace, with spectacular city views.
14/F, The Peninsula Shanghai. No. 32 The Bund, 32 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu.
Tel: +86 (21) 2327 2888 Extension 6759
The Glamour Bar
This pink-themed younger sister of the upscale M family is famous for its champagne selection, wondrous cocktails and spectacular views of Pudong. It also maintains a strong sense of community by holding events such as author talks and jazz nights.
6/F, 5 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu (near Guangdong Lu)
Tel: +86 (21) 6350 9988
Dongjia Du Lu Market
A bustling indoor market where interesting treasures can be found.
Corner of Dongjia Du Lu and Zhongshan Nan Lu, Close to the Bund
Qipu Lu Wholesale Market
A visit to the Qipu Lu Market can be somewhat overwhelming but it's where you can find the best bargains in town. There are three main buildings located at each corner of the junction. Each building has specific floors dedicated to clothes, shoes and accessories, with 100 stores per floor.
168 Qipu Lu near Henan Lu, Bei Lu Zhabei District
Tel +86 (21) 5102 0001
A pale, delicate, luminously beautiful green glaze adorns modern table and décor ceramics.
360 Kangding Road
Tel +86 (21) 6279 2545
Tai Kang Road
Tai Kang Road has made a name for itself as an artist and designer enclave and makes a refreshing change from the more obvious labels around town. This street runs between Ruijin Er Lu and Si Nan Road. Ask the taxi to drop you off at Lane 200. There are a host of interesting stores and restaurants on offer, including Pottery Workshop, International Artists Factory, Jooi, L'Atelier Mandarine, La Vie, Kommune, Chez Lu, Tai, Nuzi, Japanese Antique Clothes and Cho Lon, to name but a few.
Running from Shanxi Lu to the end of Xinle Lu, this street is lined with local designer stores with a diverse selection of stylish outfits, shoes, bags and accessories. Stores such as Zoom In, La Aroma de Vida, Change & Insect Shoes and Christine Tsui's Fashion Club are worth a visit.
Xintiandi is Shanghai's answer to London's Covent Garden. Food, fashion, bars and retail in a series of well-restored buildings. Restaurants and stores include Crystal Jade, YaoYang Tea House, Ye Shanghai, Layefe Home, Shanghai Tang, Annabel Lee, Liuligongfang and Cocoon and Ciococo.
Simon Huang 5/7/11