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The first thing that hits you when you arrive in Shanghai is the scale. The buildings are taller, the crowds are massive and the options when it comes to food and drinks practically endless.
If you’re on a flying visit to Shanghai, sticking to The Bund — the riverside road dotted with the city’s grandest colonial era buildings — is the easiest option when it comes to casual drinks or no-brainer gourmet food. But there are also plenty of gems elsewhere in the city.
Here then is THR‘s all-too-brief guide to the Shanghai bars and restaurants worth checking out during the festival.
210 Jinxian Road, near Shaanxi Nan Road, Jing’an, +86 21 6258 2801
Located in the leafy streets of the French Concession, La Maison (pictured) is the perfect spot to get away from the frenetic pace of Shanghai. Outside, there’s a roomy courtyard to enjoy evening cocktails, and the European-Chinese fusion menu has plenty of weird and wonderful surprises.
7/F 3 Zhongshan East 1st Road, Wai Tan, +86 21 6321 0909
Shanghai’s iconic Union Building, also known as Three on the Bund (Shanghai’s waterfront district), is seven floors of some of the best food and drink in Asia. On the top floor is the rather curious concept bar Pop, which is worth a visit to see how the Chinese would reimagine 1950s Miami. Rum, now all the rage in Shanghai, is its specialty, with premium bottles on offer from Plantation, Clement and a $5,500 special batch, Havana Club Maximo.
6/F, The Ascott, 282 Huaihai Zhong Road, +86 21 6333 0176
China’s most international city has unsurprisingly attracted the best international talent in food and beverage scene and places like Highline are the result. A super chic yet minimalist cocktail bar, Highline is where the city’s cool kids and creative class hang out. Make sure to sample Trader Vic signature cocktails and the always dependable mai tais.
21/F Wanda Reign on the Bund, 538 Zhong Shan Dong Er Road, +86 21 5368 8882
Shanghai isn’t short of classy hotel bars, but one of the newest and swankiest is Marc, from Michelin-starred chef Marc Meneau at the Wanda Reign on the Bund. The hotel is sure to be busy during the film festival as the parent company also owns the movie studios Legendary and Wanda Pictures. Located on the top floor of the hotel, Marc offers a stunning view the Huangpu river to go with its champagne-infused signature Tiki Royal mojito.
6/F, 3 Zhongshan East 1st Road, Wai Tan, +86 21 6321 9922
Another bar/restaurant located inside Three on The Bund, Mercato is Shanghai sophistication distilled. With interiors made of reclaimed wood, steel and leather, Mercato is a great setting for casual drinks and has the added attraction of a Pizza Lounge complete with an authentic-as-possible Italian wood-burning oven.
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