The regeneration of shanghai west bund

Rocco Forte Hotels
AUG 17th

Shanghai West Bund is one of the dynamic city’s most compelling regeneration success stories. Who would have imagined a semi-abandoned, once industrial corner of the Huangpu River could be transformed into the cutting-edge arts and culture centre that it is today?

Old meets new

Located in the Xuhui District, historic sites such as Longhua Airport, Shanghai Nanpu Railway Station, Beipiao Coal Wharf and Shanghai Cement Factory have been given a radical new lease of life, now converted to world-class art galleries, museums and cultural centres.

Beautifully landscaped gardens and tree-lined avenues connect each location, creating an inviting atmosphere for those that visit. Art-lovers, locals and tourists flock to this incredible cultural hub to meet, to picnic and to explore Shanghai’s finest galleries. The West Bund’s main centres include Shanghai Expo Center, Yuz Museum, Long Museum and West Bund Art Center.

Heritage in the 21st century

The birthplace of Chinese civil aviation in 1917, Longhua Airport was the first large-scale airport in China and the longest-servicing airport in the world. Today, the airport’s former hangars are now home to two of the West Bund’s main galleries, the West Bund Art Center and Yuz Museum. Under the direction of leading architects like Atelier Deshaus, the hangars have been turned into stylish, modern spaces that retain their industrial character. Each gallery is brimming with contemporary paintings, installations and sculptures from the most exciting Chinese and international artists.

Once eastern China’s main energy centre after its liberation, Beipiao Coal Wharf has been carefully transformed into the distinguished Long Museum. It’s a vast four-storey art space that houses the illustrious private collections of owners Liu Yiqian and his wife Wang Wei.

Back in the 1920s, Shanghai Cement Factory was one of China's most modern, large-scale enterprises. It’s now the site of DreamWorks’ upcoming DreamCenter entertainment complex, set to feature an IMAX theatre, Legoland Discovery Center, restaurants, shops and bars.

Overlooking the XuHui River, opposite Shanghai Expo Center, The West Bund Shanghai Hotel is at the heart of the area’s regeneration. Sitting atop a 54-storey tower, the luxurious retreat affords mesmerising views across Shanghai and boasts a state-of-the-art spa, grand ballroom and world-class dining.

Image Credit:

Andy Warhol Shadows © Yuz Museum
Installation View image series, all © West Bund Art & Design .jpg
West Bund Art Centre © By Fayhoo [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons