Besides the increased connectivity, it’s the architecture rising from China’s most glamorous metropolis that’s especially striking. Here are three prime examples
1. Shanghai Grand Theatre
1186 Middle Fuxing Rd
The recently reopened Shanghai Grand Theatre, which exemplifies a desire to preserve tradition and push the envelope in terms of architecture. Constructed on the original site of the historic theater, and designed by Shanghai-based Neri & Hu studio, the renewed building boasts minimalist stonework and fluted bronze walls — the new edifice is subdued but easy on the eyes. As guests are drawn in, they arrive at the main arena where traditional operas and modern plays are performed.
2. Wutopia Lab
One Park Gubei Club, 1199 East Hongsong Rd
Fancy buildings are one thing, community spaces quite another — and Wutopia Lab’s new “underground forest” library manages to be both. With the appreciation of literature enjoying a renaissance, Wutopia has designed a place for people who find comfort in bookish nooks. Housed within One Park Gubei Club, this double-storey alcove exudes a light and airy mood — private booths and quiet corners allow for meditative experiences.
3. Rising soon: Shanghai Planetarium
Looking to the future, the 38,000 square meter Shanghai Planetarium is poised to become the astronomy extension of the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum. The UFO-shaped structure is set to rule the skyline on Lingang Avenue, in the south-east corner of the city. Designed by Ennead Architects, it will feature curves to echo the golden ratio in space and time. But be patient — the planetarium is being readied for a 2020 opening.