China Travel Guide
Shops & Markets
- Shimen Road (for Nanjing Road)
of Nanjing Road
Running west from the Bund, Nanjing Road is considered to be Shanghai's foremost shopping street, despite competition from areas such as chic Huaihai Road, also in the French Concession. The street is divided in two – Nanjing Road East runs from the Bund to just before People's Park, after which it becomes Nanjing Road West, a total length of 6 miles (10 km). The traditional “shopper's paradise” is along pedestrianized Nanjing Road East, which is filled with upscale luxury brand malls, stores, and boutiques. Theaters, cinemas, restaurants, beauty salons, and crowds of shoppers complete the picture. Before 1949, all the major stores were located here. One of them, the Sun Department Store, is now the Shanghai No. 1 Department Store, which attracts 100,000 customers every day with its exotic window displays. As window shopping is such a popular pastime, the pedestrianized section of Nanjing Road East between People's Park and the Bund, with its numerous 1930s European-style buildings, is perpetually busy. The road culminates on People's Square in front of the Pacific Hotel, with its impressive exterior and fine plaster-work interior, and the dark and brooding Park Hotel, once one of the city's most fashionable hotels, as well as China's tallest building when it was built in 1934. Farther west, the area between Nanjing Road West and Jing'An Temple metro station was formerly known as Bubbling Well Road after the well near Jing'an Temple. It is more upscale and less crowded, with exclusive shopping and residential developments such as Plaza 66, Park Place, and the Shanghai Center (see Performing arts & music). There is a clutch of designer shops, restaurants, and apartments clustered around the Portman Ritz-Carlton Hotel, opposite the Shanghai Exhibition Center.