China day 2: Shanghai

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Note: These are the more personal, non-work related notes to complement this blog post.

We kickstart the day with a late breakfast dumplings. There’s no better way. It’s truly a breakfast for champions. Ready to go!

We chase down the dumplings with excellent coffee and some email catchup time at Aunn Café. Above, the find of the day: Wondfullful, a gorgeous concept store that curates a truly beautiful selection of everyday things from around the globe. Most of it is arranged by material or color, which makes for a meszmerizing experiences. Wonderful indeed.

Wondfullful concept store The lovely Wondfullful store in Jing’An

After som visiting a NYU Shanghai lecture by our Shenzhen host David in the afternoon, a stroll through Pudong. Once relatively barren, this part of Shanghai—across the river from the Bund—is where you find Shanghai’s world famous skyline. Rather than looking at this skyline, we explore it from the inside by catching the sunset from the Park Hyatt bar.

Pudong Park Hyatt Pudong sunset, as seen from the Park Hyatt bar

In the evening, we have dinner with Simone at Lotus Eatery and follow it up with a visit to one of the neighborhood’s hidden gems, the Beer Lady. This extremely low-key shop has one of the largest beer lineups on sale I’ve ever seen, from local brews to Norwegian ales.

That night we also learned about de-gentrification in Shanghai. As hyper local neighborhoods or sometimes even streets gentrify extremely quickly—say, 30 bars open up in one street within two months, replacing greengrocers and the like—they might just as well disappear as quickly as they have. But unlike many Western cities where this might lead to shuttered windows and an overall downward spiral, here small shops move right back in: The same greengrocers might open up shop again. It’s a very fluid approach, which seems to make a lot of sense.

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