Having faced the threat of demolition numerous times before it was finally designated a protected feat of ‘Heritage Architecture’, the Victorian and Edwardian-Baroque building at the top of the Bund remains today one of Shanghai’s most historic and well-preserved landmarks. First home to the Shanghai Rowing Club (and one of the city’s first indoor pools) in 1905, the building continues to make history a century later, recently undergoing a major interior revamp to reveal in March its latest iteration as a vibrant new jazz bar and café.
Dubbed Shanghai Rose, the bi-level boîte is a vision of controlled kitsch: floral murals adorn the walls; patterned cushions decorate the tufted red sofas; hanging chandeliers punctuate dark ceilings, and the general air of Paris-in-old-Shanghai is reinforced with the line-up of can-can dancers and nostalgic live soundtrack from the likes of the qipao-outfitted Old Shanghai Jazz Band. Downstairs in the casual lounge, bar bites like seafood ceviche and tuna mousse with toast are served, while the discoballed upstairs dance floor becomes a packed nightclub later on. But whether you’re in the mood for a low-key hang or an upbeat party, don’t miss the signature Shanghai Rose cocktail with cherry brandy, rose champagne and wild strawberries. Sweet!