The Langham, Shanghai, Xintiandi

99 Madang Rd, Huangpu Qu, Shanghai Shi, China, 200021

Housed in a 100-meter-tall, concave building in the heart of Xintiandi, the 24-story property has rooms with enduring views over the neighborhood’s Shikumen storefronts. Accommodations combine dark woods, floor-to-ceiling windows, green and gold wool carpets with a paisley-like motif, and dual-basin bathrooms with oversized bathtubs. Shanghai’s Art Deco period and Xintiandi’s courtyard houses inspire interiors, while color schemes of black and green appear throughout, from the dark local granite used as flooring and walls to green glass detailing. Another recurrent theme is the horse, a key Han symbol, laser-cut into large lobby columns and bronze beams to resemble bark on a tree.

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Unexpected Artists Tour in Shanghai

I was recently a guest at the luxurious Langham Hotel in Xintiandi, Shanghai (French Concession). This was a business trip, and the hotel was selected based on location to clients. The service was exquisite and personal and the convenient access to world-class (and local!) shopping was fantastic. What caught me by surprise was the odd (at least to me) and prolific presence of sculptures by a pair of Beijing artists, husband and wife Qu Guangci and Xiang Jian. The name means “rare and special” in Chinese. Their art is a sort of ceramic, sarcastic interpretation of real-life strife and situations, with themes like “human being’s fate,” and “predicament.” Just take a stroll through the hotel lobby and then a lap around the block and you’ll get a colorful eye-ful! A free walking tour filled with local art in all sizes and shapes. To arrive, take the red subway Line 1 to South Huangpi Road and walk the few blocks to the hotel. After your walk, stay for the high tea in the hotel’s lobby - you will be surrounded by the top tier of Chinese commerce on break.

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