Last month saw the long-awaited opening of The Middle House (pictured above and below), the latest edition to the House Collective from Swire Properties – which also includes The Upper House (Hong Kong) The Temple House (Chengdu) and The Other House (Beijing). Situated in the historic neighbourhood of Dazhongli, the hotel’s interiors are the vision of Milan-based designer Piero Lissoni, who brings elegant, moody Italian style to the neighbourhood.
Bright emerald green walls pop out from high-contrast black and white interiors, and the 111 studios and suites and 102 serviced apartments boast an elegant, residential feel. Fans of The Upper House will be thrilled to find a Shanghai outpost of Café Gray Deluxe from New York chef Gray Kunz, and spa lovers will delight at MI XUN Spa’s Cha Ling treatments, created by LVMH Research in France.
A stone’s throw away, The Sukhothai Shanghai is a marvel of pared back contemporary design by architecture firm Neri&Hu. The 201 rooms and suites feature muted tones and a minimal feel, creating a calm and natural atmosphere that’s sure to please in this frenetic city. The two hotels form the cornerstones of HKRI Taikoo Hui – a mixed-use development featuring luxury retail and offices. A few months ago, Aman’s latest Chinese property reset the rules for what a Shanghai hotel ought to look like, after rebuilding a collection of Ming- and Qing-dynasty buildings on the outskirts of the city.
Earmarked for destruction, the buildings were painstakingly transported from Jiangxi to their new home, along with 10,000 ancient camphor trees, which were due to be felled to make way for a new reservoir. Today, the 24 Ming Courtyard Suites and 13 Antique Villas of Amanyangyun (below) are among the most sought after accommodation in the city, with signature Aman style transforming the ancient dwellings into a haven of calm and tranquillity.
In a similar tale of preservation and renovation, last year’s most significant opening was Capella Shanghai Jian Ye Li (below), a collection of traditional 19th century shikumen buildings in the French Concession that have been transformed into a residential village of 55 one- to three-bedroom suites spread around 22 lanes and alleyways. The hotel was the last project of Indonesian designer Jaya Ibrahim before his death in 2015 and features dining from Pierre Gagnaire and a branch of Capella’s Auriga spa.
The Shanghai shakedown continues in the coming months with the imminent opening of The Bulgari Hotel Shanghai (below) – 82 guestrooms spread across the former Chamber of Commerce and a new 48-storey tower – and The Shanghai EDITION, which brings 145 new uber-stylish guestrooms and two rooftop bars to the east end of Nanjing Road.