Hotel Highlights

  • China’s first carbon-neutral hotel
  • Stylish modern design with a clientele to match
  • Sexy guests-only rooftop lounge bar

Overview

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.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking URBN Hotels Shanghai with us:

A one-hour massage each

Special offers

Exclusive rates, packages and special offers at URBN Hotels Shanghai

Advanced purchase: 15% off 10% early booking discount Penthouse Suite: buy one get one for free!

Facilities

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URBN Hotels Shanghai – Shanghai – China

Need To Know

Rooms

26, including a spa suite and two penthouses.

Check–out

Noon, but flexible, depending on availability. Earliest check-in, 2pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $272.03 (CNY1,700), 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.

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.

At the hotel

Rooftop gardens, in-room spa treatments, gym, DVD/CD library, WiFi throughout (CNY150 a day). In rooms: flatscreen TV, iPod-compatible sound system, minibar.

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

In keeping with the hotel’s impressive eco-credentials, you can buy carbon credits directly from Urbn to offset your flights.

Children

Urbn welcomes kids of 12 years and up.

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.

Food & Drink

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URBN Hotels Shanghai – Shanghai – China

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.

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.

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.

Smith Insider

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.

Local Guide

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URBN Hotels Shanghai – Shanghai – China
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Local restaurants

Lynn Modern Shanghai Cuisine (+86 (0)21 6247 0101), on the junction of Nanjing and Xi Kang roads, serves tasty dim sum and contemporary Shanghainese dishes amid an opulent art deco interior. Visit at the weekend for one of the restaurant's renowned all-you-can-eat brunches.

Local bars

Head to the People's Park and sup mojitos by the lakeside at Barbarossa (+86 (0)21 6318 0220) , a flashy Moroccan-themed bar and restaurant with great cocktails, fruity hookahs, and a lovely terrace.

+ Enlarge
French Concession quarter

URBN Hotels Shanghai

JiaoZhou No.183 (between Beijing Lu and XinZa Lu lu, and is near Nanjing Road, and Jing An Temple), Shanghai, China, 200040

This ‘green’ hotel is set in the heart of Shanghai; close to shops, restaurants, colonial lanehouses and the city's famous French Concession area.

Planes

Fly into Shanghai’s Pudong International airport, which services international and domestic flights daily.

Trains

If you'd rather travel by rail, there's a train station at the airport; get on the Maglev train and get off at Longyang Station. Board another train on Line 2 going in the direction of Songhong Road and alight at Jing An Temple Station. The hotel is a five-minute walk through the Yuyuan Road, perpendicular to JiaoZhou Road.

Automobiles

A shuttle bus at the airport also plies the route to town: take bus number 2, which stops at Jing An Temple Station. The hotel is a five-minute walk through the Yuyuan Road, perpendicular to JiaoZhou Road. Alternatively, get a taxi from the airport, which should cost about RMB160.

Reviews

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URBN Hotels Shanghai – Shanghai – China

Anonymous review

by Mark Chalmers , Art Digerati at Tribal DDB

We are two of the lucky ones. My partner is shakily tackling a gin and tonic on a leafy roof terrace overlooking Shanghai, now appreciating its reputation as China’s most turbulent city. Three hours earlier we were frantically navigating our taxi, realising that ‘Urbn Hotels Sh...

Read more

URBN Hotels Shanghai

Anonymous review by Mark Chalmers, Art Digerati

We are two of the lucky ones. My partner is shakily tackling a gin and tonic on a leafy roof terrace overlooking Shanghai, now appreciating its reputation as China’s most turbulent city. Three hours earlier we were frantically navigating our taxi, realising that ‘Urbn Hotels Shanghai’ doesn’t translate well in Chinese. I was in the front seat, rammed up against my driver’s greasy Perspex protective box, straining through the windscreen to anticipate junctions. Mrs Smith was in the back, punch drunk and holding on tight.

Our white-knuckle ride had taken us north and south, past ancient and modern architecture. We had stolen occasional glances of landmarks in the Shanghai skyline to lose them again behind lesser-known tower blocks. But in the end, it didn’t matter. The journey was fun and pretty much summed up Shanghai: a city of contrasts, lost and found, old and new. And all without a single word or mannerism between us and the driver that had been understood.

Regrouped later in Urbn’s lobby we – and an adventurous group of our metropolis-loving friends – exchanged anecdotes, setting the pattern for the next few days of our city break. Behind us in reception were stacks of bygone leather suitcases – a backdrop to the stories of the city that travellers such as ourselves bring in. Privately owned and created by a Californian and an Australian, you can feel the Urbn originates from people who have travelled. It combines a sensitive touch with a sense of adventure.

The self-contained suites provide personal space where few locals know what that concept is, the abundance of reclaimed materials respect the land it sits on and the worthy, ecologically sound construction – yes, the Urbn is China’s first carbon-neutral hotel – means it’s possible to visit the manufacturing centre of the world while avoiding accusations of helping it to bolster the world’s carbon footprint.

The Urbn is a former post office converted into 26 rooms. It’s intimate enough without feeling like you’re at a family reunion of unknown relatives, while being large enough to utilise the 24-hour room service guilt-free at 4am to order the very worthwhile house burger.

The rich mahogany floors and walls aren’t sheer opulence either: it is sensitive reclaiming that gives Urbn’s spaces their soul – real soul from local houses in a city that is so geared towards the new it doesn’t understand what second-hand is.

What the hotel calls a studio lounge we happily call a suite. What Urbn calls a courtyard suite, we called our penthouse. A huge slate shower room with seating for four made us think we were expecting visitors. The freestanding bathtub had two great panoramic views – one of the flatscreen TV and one of the Shanghai rooftops through floor-to-ceiling windows. Add the masterful bed and wraparound sunken lounge area, and it was as good being in as it was being out.

When we did venture outside, we hit hip-hop guru Gary Wang’s (aka DJ V-Nutz) club the Shelter – literally an old air-raid shelter showcasing local and global underground music. For something more upscale (and above ground), try Lounge18 on the Bund. Dressy, upbeat with amazing views – you will feel you have ‘arrived’.

I didn’t know it at the time but have since learnt that China is one of only three countries that have never been occupied, and it is this strength of culture that’s the real reward in Shanghai. There is little the Chinese haven’t experienced or overcome, and it’s an attitude that hasn’t escaped the Urbn’s unflinching staff. Burgers at 4am were small fry. There was nothing that couldn’t be handled.

If you wanted DVDs they appeared with armfuls, if you wanted games, the same. In fact, gaming is obviously popular because there was a full-on room and bar on the fourth floor, complete with video projector, dedicated purely to the pursuit. And good cocktail mixing in Urbn’s bar/restaurant RoomTwentyEight wasn’t lost in translation either.

Shanghai is home to languages so numerous and dialects so wide-reaching that written and spoken words are rarely fully understood. So if you’re going to jump in feet first, Urbn Hotels Shanghai is the perfect platform. Plus, if you pick up a ‘Take me to the Urbn’ business card from reception, you’ll avoid perilous taxi journeys – and white knuckles.

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