Langham Yangtze Boutique Hotel Opens in Shanghai
The Langham hotel brand opened its first boutique hotel in Shanghai this past May, and it's a stunner -- especially if you're a fan of Art Deco design.
The Yangtze Hotel first opened in 1934, with 200 guestrooms -- the first Chinese-funded hotel to have air-conditioning. Standards of luxury have evolved since then, and when Langham acquired in 2008, it deemed the room too small, so part of the overhaul included collapsing those 200 rooms down to 96, which is the tally at the newly named Langham Yangtze Boutique. (You can still get a feel of old-fashioned cramped-ness in the elevators which are teensy weensy.) The rooms, on the other hand, are really quite spacious, and are appointed with a thoughtfully modern interpretation of Art Deco, along with modern conveniences, like flat screen TVs, iPod docking stations and so on. For a real sense of high Art Deco glam, grab a cocktail and go swooping down the hotel's central staircase from the bar.
The hotel's location, contrary to its name, is not on the Yangtze River, but it is about as central as you can get, just a block away from People's Square. (And one of my favorite places in all of Shanghai, the Urban Planning Museum.) Exterior rooms can be noisy, interior rooms are darker, but quieter. For restaurants, the hotel looks beyond the city its in for inspiration. At the top end, there's the second location of Hong Kong's Michelin-starred T'ang Court, which specializes in Cantonese cuisine, as well as an Italian and a Japanese restaurant. There's also a good spa on hand, Chuan -- it's not huge, but it's got all the amenities you'd expect in a hotel of this caliber.
Gallery: Langham Yangtze Shanghai