The Waterhouse at South Bund
What We Love
- An eye for authentic and industrial chic details, down to the tin trays that date back to the Cultural Revolution
- Spectacular views of Pudong from the rooftop bar
- The reception’s elevated ceilings and unfinished walls up the cool quotient
What To Know
- Room 17 has a window visible from the lobby
- The nearest metro station is a 15-minute walk away
- Free WiFi
Once a dockyard warehouse, this South Bund hotel was designed by locally based studio Neri & Hu to preserve many of the building’s original features – the metal window frames have been left intact, as well as the raw shell of the industrial building. Inside, however, it’s all concrete, brick, glass, and steel deployed to great effect, with a creative merging of the public and private (unexpected windows connect the public spaces, bathrooms have glass doors).
Bed and Bath
Of the 19 rooms (11 of which are suites), the ones to book are those that have double-height windows with views of the Huangpu River. Tiny foyers make each space feel bigger, while contemporary, minimalist touches – white walls, polished timber floors, an occasional wall of exposed brick – as well as furniture pieces by Hans Wegner, Arne Jacobsen, and Finn Juhl are not-so-subtle nods to Scandinavian design. What’s more, the Copula rooms can be connected – handy if you’re traveling with friends.
Table No.1, the brainchild restaurant of Michelin-starred British chef Jason Atherton that occupies the hotel’s ground floor, is one of the chicest in Shanghai. Its modern European menu draws a perpetual crowd, so reservations are essential. Up at the rooftop bar, guests can indulge in clever, locally-inspired cocktails made with ingredients like soy sauce and lime (they’re better than you think) – all accompanied by the backdrop of Pudong’s glowing, futuristic skyscrapers just across the river.
In the Area
The Bund is a playground for both locals and tourists, who gather on the banks of the river nightly to gawp and snap selfies in front of the lights. Within walking distance is the South Bund Fabric Market, where tailors whip up custom-made clothes in hundreds of different textiles. Take a ferry down the river to get a closer look at the skyline (ask the concierge to direct you), or hop in a taxi bound for the French Concession, a chilled-out historic neighborhood of chic shops and restaurants in colonial buildings on tree-lined streets.
How to Get There
It sure is a very unique experience to stay at this hotel the moment we opened the door to check in! Nothing is ordinary at this hotel: the cracked, unfinished of old wall, painted steel bracket to hold the existing column, unmatched furniture, gigantic chandelier, cement floor, beautifully composed of windows and frames - as if they sing a love song. The rooms, total of 16, none of them is the same as others. My room has huge white bed with looking into courtyard and side street, the shower and bath tub locate almost center of the room, only separate by sink and walkway. The bathroom is all glass! Yes, glass!!!! If you take shower or bath without shutting curtain, you can welcome people from other building to see you enjoy your happy bath! Everything at this hotel speaks the volume of experience, a dream, the unexpected, and surprises! If you are looking for something luxury and room service all night, this hotel will disappoint you by a light year!
I love this hotel, I enjoyed the experience, and I’d love to stay here again! Too bad when we arrived China, it’s been raining and snowing all week!!!!!
I spend over 100 night in Marriott reward hotel annually. This is the worst place I ever experienced.
The pillow is too soft and no other options. So I have to sacrifice my sleep. There is no face wash cloth so I have to use a heavy towl to take shower. The breakfast is horrible and start late. Very little options.
The people in the hotel are pretty cold too.
I will never come back again and it worth only one star for what we can get here.
It has been my second stay at the Waterhouse in Shanghai. I did love my stay in the paste but this time you could actually see that the hotel needs a major renovation in order to get back on track.
The rooms are still ok but all public space look really old (nothing to do with a vintage style anymore) and plenty of parts are broken.
Stayed one night (room 32) which was one of the suites - great size room and amazing views. The joinery in room appeared worn out / paint peeling etc - we couldn’t quite work out if this was the look or lack of maintenance!
The overall architecture of the hotel is very industrial and the foyer area amazing.
The service could be sharper - both at checkin and in the bar/breakfast area. The roof top was closed both on the Sunday evening and Monday morning (very strange you can’t even go up there to take photos).
The best part was the restaurant - Oxaflis (think that’s the spelling) - some of the best French / international food in Shanghai and the environment sublime. ( Must try the Pork Shoulder).
Looks like the whole waterfront promenade has just been completed right out front of the hotel - so was about a 25 minutes walk all the way along the promenade to the main Bund (stunning views the whole way).
Overall good Stay/cation experience - and would definitely return to the restaurant.
The Waterhouse is a fairly new player in Shanghai. It is not one of the big hotels. Located at the south end of the Bund it is a bit out... you need to walk a bit to the next subway station or you need to take a taxi. Rooms are fairly large & stylish, service is great. Breakfast is good as well.Try "Cool Docks", a bar/pub/small restaurant place - which is new as well. It is literally less then 100 steps from the hotel.