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Nobody does hospitality like Asia, and Shanghai has gone from having 1 five-star hotel 30 years ago to having an almost embarrassing number of world-class hotels. Want gritty local street action? Find a charming hotel in the midst of it. Prefer pandering? Yes, sir and madam, right this way.

1. Banyan Tree on the Bund 

Want the iconic ‘money shot’ of two sides of Shanghai? From your room (or the TOPS skybar) you can see the sparkling new Lujiazui financial district and the story-filled old city to the right. Treat yourself: Dine amid romantic burning lanterns on the Bund waterfront. 

2. Riverview Hotel


A more local style for those who want location and affordability. A short walk to the Bund, the famous Yu Gardens, and with Starbucks just opposite when you need a fix of good Western-style coffee. Popular with European tourists and couples. 

3. Sofitel Hyland Shanghai


For those who want to be right in the thick of midtown, this Sofitel sits right on famed Nanjing Road (a lively tourist attraction in itself). Some feel it needs a lick of paint to be really 5-star, but no complaints over the sumptuous breakfast buffet to set you up for the day.

4. Andaz Xintiandi Shanghai

Art lovers may never want to leave this hotel because it is quite a work of modern art in its own right. Pop art, mood lighting, and dramatic features abound. Plus all the dining and shopping delights of Xintiandi on your doorstep.

5. Fairmont Peace Shanghai

Old Shanghai charm meets new Shanghai sophistication right here at the much-storied Peace Hotel, which has witnessed much of China’s modern history unfold. The jazz band here is literally part of the furniture (they might even be older than it!) and is a quintessential experience.

6.
Grand Kempinski Hotel Shanghai

Being on the river on the Pudong side, this hotel gives you the ‘reverse angle’ view of the Bund. Modern European flair and efficiency abounds here, with spacious rooms and bathrooms, and it’s adjacent to the aquarium if that’s on your to-do list.

7. Les Suites Orient Bund Shanghai Hotel

Singles and couples not looking to spring for 5-stars will be blown away by this hotel right on the river, rubbing shoulders with bigger name hotels but at a lower price point. Feel likes a quick walk? Yu Gardens and Natural History Museum are close by.

8. Radisson Blu Shanghai New World

Dominating the Nanjing Road area is this soaring 208 metre tower, resembling a UFO landing on a giant pepper grinder. Best of all, you can head up to the 47th floor Sky Dome and enjoy live music and awesome midtown city light views.

9. The Langham Xintiandi Shanghai 

Contemporary luxury has been bolted onto the historic Xintiandi entertainment precinct, in the form of the Langham. If you’re on the go, you’ll love the convenience of 2 Metro stations, and retiring to a comfy room just steps away from Shanghai Tang and countless boutiques, wine bars, etc.

10. The Puli Hotel & Spa 

The Puli bills itself as an urban resort, and the park-like atmosphere doesn’t disappoint. Styish décor is zen like, and the Oriental flavor is continued by having JingAn Temple near by, juxtaposing the charm of the Former French Concession with its eateries nearby.