Luxury housing versus Local housing

Well, I have had the busiest week for awhile and only just got to the blog. I hope you have had a good week so far too. Pretty chilly so will write some tips on keeping warm but for now, I have some other tips.

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I was actually at a meeting this afternoon with Shanghai Expat and we were discussing all the things that newbies need to know about properties in Shanghai. The vast differences in prices between luxury housing and local housing came up so I thought I’d share some insights about it.

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So, it goes like this…

There are two types of property compounds in Shanghai. One is a developer built and owned compound that is called luxury housing. These properties are built of high quality materials and decorated in the same style with good quality fit outs and attractive decor and furnishings. Am sure you know the ones I mean… a bit like the serviced apartments you see here in Shanghai. Generally, these compounds are managed by international property companies and because of their quality, level of service and great facilities they charge premium rentals ranging from 25,000rmb to 100,000rmb.

Another kind of compound is called local housing which is poorer quality and simpler in style. Units are partly or wholly sold off to individuals and are either decorated nicely by the developer or fitted out by the owner according to his/her individual taste and budget. Some of the local properties don’t quite suit westerner’s tastes but others are quite stylish and you can find some good options which are lower in rental than a luxury housing unit. Because of quality concerns you do need to be careful and check the property, facilities and common area thoroughly. Also check out the management office to see what kind of welcome you get.

Before taking a local housing property have an in depth check of the following.

  • Level of service of management office
  • Quality of the fit out (open cupboards, drawers doors and see if all flows smoothly)
  • Electricity supply, heating and cooling unit efficiency
  •  Water pressure
  • The quality of furniture and appliances (ie. English instruction manuals)
  • Check the window and door sealings and double glazing
  • Many landlords’ live overseas and have representatives here. Make sure you can reach them 24 hours in case of an emergency.

I hope these tip help you secure a comfortable well priced home in Shanghai. You can also read more about the two types of Villa Compounds in Shanghai. More tips of housing and leasing can be found HERE or you can email me at manager@shanghaiprops.com

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Some days you just get stuck and bogged down…

Congratulations!

Email manager@shanghaiprops.comto redeem this Christmas Gift Voucher:

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Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

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Shanghai Properties for Families

December and January are when families start to arrive on our shores so I thought I’d start a series of family friendly areas and recommend some rental properties in Shanghai. The first area I want to introduce is the one I started my work in residential properties back in 1993, the oldest burbs in Shanghai, Hong Qiao!!

 Windsor Park villa in Shanghai, image from Windsor Renaissance homepage

Hong Qiao 

Hong Qiao (Qiao is pronounced Chow) is in the western part of Shanghai called Puxi (Pu “river” and Xi “west”). It lies inside Changning and is sandwiched between Gubei and Zhong Shan Park. Hong Qiao is a former industrial and farming area and was the first area to have expat rental properties. Even now it still has some of the best expat housing in Shanghai. Many expat families send their kids to the well established Shanghai Community International School and Yeuw Cheung School. Transport is great in the area (except for peak hour when traffic inches along) and lines 2, 3, 4 and 10 can get you just about anywhere you want to go. For grocery shopping there’s the big Gubei Carrefour supermarket with an international section, City Market, Pines, the Hongqiao Friendship Store or Parkson supermarket. A popular place to enjoy a coffee and quick bite is Hong Mei Rd and for nocturnal habits Foreigner Street’s bars and restaurants is where the action happens. For kids on weekends there’s the Zoo and Zhongshan Park to visit. If you don’t have kids but are trying then the United Hospital has the best medical facilities for newborn bubs.

Houses for rent in Hong Qiao

Well, let’s start at the top then. If you are lucky enough to have 90,000rmb to splash on rental every month Le Chateau have beautiful luxury homes for rent. A little cheaper house to rent is the Award Winning well run Windsor Place and it’s sister next door, the older and cozier Windsor Park. These villas will only set you back around 80,000rmb a month. If you are looking for an American style house, these prefabricated villas are scattered around the grounds of the beautiful Hong Qiao Guest House. The historic Xi Jiao Guest House has there villas nestled next door.

Windsor Place Shanghai, image from Windsor Renaisance homepage

Other rental homes in Hong Qiao that are worth checking out are Caesar Park Shanghai, Jasmine Garden, Green Valley Villas, Ridgewood, Cedar, Vernal, Westwood and Elegant Garden.

More local houses for rent that attract fewer expatriates but are better priced can be found at these compounds. Regents Park, Hong Qiao Golf, Hong Mei Villas, Parkson, Si Fang Xi Jia, Sunny Garden, Sunland, Sunridge, Xi Jiao Bao Chen, Mandarin Villas, Dynasty and China Garden.

If rental apartments are your thing then there’s the family friendly Yanlord Riviera Garden or the well managed serviced apartments of Windsor Court. Other good apartments for rent in the Hong Qiao area are Oasis Riviera, Fairlake, Sassoon, Huntington Terrace and Shanghai American Home.

 Playground at Windsor Court, image from Windsor Renaissance homepage

Well, I hope this introduction to places to live for families is useful. Keep an eye out for more advice on Shanghai properties for families.

Here you can find a list of International Schools in Changning as well as info on Experimental Schools in Shanghai.

Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

 

My Diary: My Haircut

I spotted a little local hairdresser on the corner of Anfu Rd & Wukang Rd and thought my long locks needed a quick trim. These little hairdressers pepper the city because millions of people here don’t have the best places to wash. Western and Chinese hair differs greatly so there’s a big risk using local hairdressers for styling or colouring but they are fine for a quick trim. You need to watch them with their scissor dancing though or you will end up looking like their favourite Chinese pop star.

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If you need a good style and colour Shanghai has some excellent expat and local hairdressers who will keep you in the style you are accustomed to. They won’t be charging 35rmb for a trim, wash and dry like our local hairdresser Mr. Xu. Just a wee tad more.

Expat Hairdressers in Shanghai

Stephen BuchananHouse 11, 133 Maoming Nan Lu, Luwan (nr Huai Hai Zong Rd)

Nataly Salon, Russian, 2nd flr, Shanghai One, 1138 Pu Dong Nan Lu/Zhang Yang Lu, Pudong

Frank Provost: 35 Shanxi Nan Lu, near Changle Lu. (Ask for Douglas King)

West Salon: Minhang (near SAS), but just opened a branch in Pudong recently.

Eric Paris salon, 4  Heng shan lu, Xu hui.  (Ask for French guy Yannig)

Contesta Rock Hair, 733 Julu lu (between Xing Yang/Fumin Lu), Jing An (Ask for Italian guy)

Bono Salon, 870 Wuding Lu (Near Changde Lu), Jing An

For Men:

Wenfeng Salon on Jiangsu Lu, Channing (Ask for Wan Xingxing)

RE-BORN on Da Gu Lu, Jing An. (Ask for Michael)

ID Hair, 274 Nanchang Lu, (near Maoming Lu), Luwan

Find other useful links for expats here!

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Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

 

Thanksgiving Dinner in Shanghai

If you are already here and looking to spend Thanksgiving in Shanghai, here is a complilation of dinners and events on November 22nd sponsored by various venues around town. What are your plans going to be?
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Stiller’s Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Day at Jimmy’s Kitchen

Grand Thanksgiving at Bloc

Origin Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving at Napa

JW’s Thanksgiving Feast

Dakota’s Annual Thanksgiving Dinner

Shook! Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Dinner at the Apartment

Maya’s Thanksgiving Dinner

Grand Brasserie Thanksgiving

PiRO Thanksgiving Feast

Thanksgiving Dinner at Kathleen’s 5

Thanksgiving Buffet Dinner at Shanghai City Bistro

The Spot bar Thanksgiving

Prime Thanksgiving Feast by Prime 1921, at Sasha’s

Thanksgiving Celebrations at Renaisance Shanghai Yu Garden

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Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

Streets of the French Concession (Wulumuqi , Fuxing Xi, Yong Fu and Wukang Rd)

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Took a stroll down Wulumuqi Rd at lunchtime with Grace and she soon spotted her favourite snack, spicy Cong You Bing. This road is lined with tasty treats from morning to night and has that wonderful hustle and bustle that makes living in China so exciting. Apart from the food fest there is a wonderful Mata Mata bakery, small stores with all sorts of nuts n stuff and loads of fruit and veggie stores with the most popular being the Avocado lady’s. For the budget conscious there is a supermarket named DIA (Carrefour’s discount store). Now winter is near Wulumuqi Rd, Shanghai will be my snack spot once more.

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Fuxing Xi Rd connects Wulumuqi Rd and Wukang Rd together. This is where our office lies on one of the loveliest streets in the Village Green part of the former French Concession. Here you will find quirky little shop fronts and fashionable little boutiques with 3 love birds out the front.

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Yong Fu Rd only comes alive at night when the entertainment places open their doors to patrons. The biggest attraction of all on this street is the swish, cosy and classy Apartment bar and restaurant complete with private dining rooms and rooftop terrace.

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Wukang Rd, Shanghai is one of the most historic in the former French Concession and the most widely photographed. Tours trundle down the road on weekends with camera shutters clicking away. There are a number of famous villas lived in by famous people that are famously known. Don’t ask me who, just wander on down. One of my favourite get aways is Ferguson Lane where Lee and I went for a quick coffee and chat this afternoon. This old art deco factory has been jazzed up and kitted out with some charming bars, cafes, restaurants and galleries. It’s got some great art works scattered around. My favourite is the girl on the bike enjoying a summer’s day ride.

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Ferguson Lane is the local haunt for expats living at places like Tomson Xinguo, Beverly Court and Chanter and is a mere 10 mins walk from Belgravia, Chateau Pinnacle and Shama Huashan.

I hope you’ll come and join me in the French Concession. If so then have a look at my apartments on my site.

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For more adventures and photography in this area read my post on Anfu Road, Xuhui and Anfu, Wu Yuan Road!

Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

My Diary: Random acts of kindness in Shanghai

I always try and underscore to new arrivals how incredibly safe this city is which compared with most major cities of this kind is without doubt a rarity. Whilst I have had a couple of small incidences of theft and pick pocketing over the years I consider them minor and carried out by some petty thieves.  The other day I was walking across Fuxing Xi Rd with my passport in my hand trying to juggle a bag and a jacket and unkown to me my passport slipped from its cover. A van that had whizzed past pulled to the side and slammed on his brakes. The driver got out and came towards me motioning to the ground where my passport lay. I was shocked that I dropped the passport but even more that this guy’s keen eyes had notice it and he bothered and cared enough to stop and tell me.

It reminded me of a time when I dropped our office mobile when getting into my van at People’s Square. When I got back to the office the person who picked it up had just called my driver (the last no I had dialed) and he turned around to go and pick it up. I rang them to thank them for their kindness and they wouldn’t accept any reward. Just goes to show how very kind and gracious people can be here to their fellow citizens. I would love to hear of any random acts of kindness you may have experienced in Shanghai.

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Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties

 

Anfu Rd and Wu Yuan Rd

I know I’ve shared some of these before but wanted to share more snaps of my recent walks down these delightful streets.

I bring you, ladies and gentlemen, my journey down Anfu Rd and Wu Yuan Rd in the lovely French Concession, Shanghai.

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For those of us who are lucky enough to be renting a Shanghai Apartment at Kingsville, Chevalier, The Summit and Beverly Court. Then Anfu Rd and Wu Yuan Rd in the French Concession are a shuffle away. For expats living a little yonder at compounds like Central Residences Phase 1 and Phase 2, Tomson Xinguo, Royal Pavillion, or Chanter the streets are a mere ten minute walk. Like many expats and locals I love wandering these quaint streets anytime of the day or night. In Anfu Rd there’s a blend of vibrant eateries, comfy cafes, designer outlets and quirky stores to enjoy and there is always something interesting going on in the street. Today the flower ladies were in full bloom and Mr Guo “the plant man” was resting by the road.

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I wandered down the lane leading to Wuyuan Rd like I had hundreds of time before and snapped some of the quaint little places that are homes to the not so well heeled in the area. I wandered down Wuyuan Rd and caught up with the “plant lady” Mrs. He attending to her outdoor garden of indoor plants ringing the kerb. The Langzhou noodle shop is under renovation now and can’t wait for it to open. Taxis lined the street outside our little canteen filling up before heading out on another very long shift.

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Check out more photography and adventures in Anfu Road and Streets of the French Concession!

 

 

Adrienne black top - small

Adrienne Farrelly is one of Shanghai’s most experienced expatriate Property Agents helping expats find new homes since 1994. You can reach her at  +86 13122 810 421 or  manager@shanghaiprops.com. Connect with her on Skype at shanghaiproperties8. Shanghai Properties