URBN Hotels Shanghai
- Style Contemporary carbon-neutral cool
- Setting French Concession quarter
The high wooden gates of Urbn Hotels Shanghai keep the bustle of Shanghai’s Jiao Zhou road a world away from this luxuriously tranquil boutique hideaway. Built out of reclaimed materials – including raw hardwoods, antique leather luggage and house bricks – China’s first carbon-neutral hotel offers a window into old Shanghai without losing sight of modern comfort and sensibilities.
Need to know
- Rooms 26, including a spa suite and two penthouses.
- Rates Double rooms from $247.12 (CNY1,500), excluding tax at 15 per cent.
- More details Rates include afternoon tea and a range of soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits, but exclude breakfast.
- Facilities Rooftop gardens, in-room spa treatments, gym, DVD/CD library, WiFi throughout (CNY150 a day). In rooms: flatscreen TV, iPod-compatible sound system, minibar.
- Check–out Noon, but flexible, depending on availability.
Children Urbn welcomes kids of 12 years and up.
- Hotel closed The hotel will be closed for a full renovation between 15 November and 31 December 2013.
- Eco‐friendly Built out of reclaimed brick from old Shanghai houses, the hotel’s carbon neutral offsetting everything from lighting to staff commutes, and recycles wherever possible.
- Also In keeping with the hotel’s impressive eco-credentials, you can buy carbon credits directly from Urbn to offset your flights.
- Please note The hotel is currently closed for renovations and will reopen in January 2014.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms Rooms 2 and 3 come with a wonderful sense of space, cosy wraparound sofas in the sunken lounge and sublime garden views. The Courtyard Suite, however, is the one for serious hedonists with its private courtyard and spa treatment room.
- Packing tips Bring an exercise book for your Mandarin language notes – Urbn staff give lessons for beginners.
- Also Try your hand (and foot) at Tai Chi or yoga – Urbn can arrange classes – or spice up your culinary skills with a Chinese cooking course.
Food and drink at URBN Hotels Shanghai
- Hotel restaurant Urbn's sleek onsite restaurant, Downstairs with David Laris, is Shanghai's only carbon-neutral restaurant. Acclaimed Australian chef David Laris oversees the sustainably-focused menu, which features brilliant brunches and laid-back lunches of truffled macaroni cheese or mussles with french fries. Things step up a notch at dinner, when the kitchen turns out contemporary dishes such as pan-fried scallops with chilli and chorizo, or a wagyu sirloin with tomato jam. Urbn Lounge serves a generous afternoon tea to guests, which might include savoury tarts, sandwiches, scones and profiteroles, plus a range of soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits.
- Dress code High-street chic (preferably in eco-friendly fabrics).
- Top table For the best views, book a table beside one of Downstaris' floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the courtyard.
- Last orders Downstairs is open throughout the day, from a blinkingly early 6.30am for breakfast until the kitchen closes at 12am. Drinks are available in the lounge until 2am.
- Room service A 24-hour snack selection, with Downstairs meals available in your room during restaurant opening hours.
- Hotel bar As well as the slinky cocktail area adjoining the restaurant, there’s a thrillingly Bond-ish guests-only lounge on the rooftop called Upstairs, which is accessed through a code-locked door in an innocuous concrete wall.