For Hongkongers, Shenzhen has long been the place we head to for fabrics and tailoring. But with the city’s growth as a start-up capital and electronics megapolis, Shenzhen is shedding is staid reputation and reinventing itself as a first-tier city in China. Here are five reasons you need to revisit Shenzhen right now.
As part of Shenzhen’s cool renaissance, a number of hotels catering to business travelers, leisure weekenders and everyone in between have sprung up. You’ll find everything from big-name luxury hotels to smaller, quirky boutique properties here. One of the city’s top digs is the Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen. Tucked into the business and commercial heart of Futian — and just minutes from the high-speed rail station — this sumptuous property puts everything within reach. The guest rooms are expansive and beautifully combine elements and eastern and western design; the F&B is as good as you’d expect from a five-star property; and you’ll definitely want to slip into the spa.
Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen: 138 Fuhua Third Road, Futian, +86-755-8826-8888
Shenzhen’s bar scene is constantly evolving as innovative new concepts pop up in the most unlikely of places. If you only have time for one, make it Fabric, a chic spot hidden in a quiet industrial estate. A fabric shop by day, once the sun sets, this space turns into a chic speakeasy-style bar where delicious craft cocktails are whipped up amid grand surrounds. If you have more time, you might want to try Barbershop, The Peat, Bionic Brew or Goon Goon.
Barbershop: No.1035, Shangbu Nanlu, Futian
The Peat: 2/F, A Block, Tairan Dasha, Tairan 6th Road, Futian
Bionic Brew: +86 755 8670 7005
Goon Goon: T3055, L3, Upper Hills, Futian
Art in Shenzhen spans from the traditional to the contemporary, and you could spend an entire weekend here and now see it all. At the famous Dafen Oil Painting Village, you can wander through little alleys and open-air shops watching local artists create intriguing works of art — both originals and copies of masters. If you’re so inclined, you can even take a lesson! Over at OCT, you’ll find a number of modern studios and galleries filled with international and local art. Plus, if you’re here on the right weekend, there is even a street market where stalls are filled with all manner of goods. For art of a different kind, you’ll want to see what’s playing at the Shenzhen Concert Hall, the Grand Theatre, or the Poly Theatre.
Foodies will delight in the fact that Shenzhen is now becoming something of a dining destination in its own right. Of course, Chinese food is at the forefront here, and you’ll find plenty of places to indulge. Try Ba Shu Feng for Sichuan, HaidiLao for hotpot, and the Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen’s Zhou Yue Xuan for Cantonese and dim sum. For something different, you could pop into Tequila Coyotes for tacos, Bollywood Café for Indian, or BAIA for Mediterranean fare.
Ba Shu Feng: 181 Fenghuang Rd, HuangBeiLing, Luohu, +86-755-2568-0388
HaidiLao: 5-6/F, Youyingcheng, 63 Your Road, Louhu, +86-755-8225-0991
Zhou Yue Xuan: 138 Fuhua Third Road, Futian, +86-755-8826-8888
Tequila Coyote: Shop 113, Seaworld, Shekou, +86 755-2683-6446
Bollywood Cafe: 2045 Remin S Road, RenMin NanLu, Luohu, +86-755-8222-0370
BAIA: B301, Sea World, 8 Wanghai Road, +86-755-2681-8836
Spas a dime a dozen in Shenzhen — and most of them offer great pampering at a fraction of the cost of what you’ll find in Hong Kong. If you’re looking for seriously luxe pampering, you won’t need to look any further at than the onsite spa at one of the city’s five-star hotels. A firm favorite, though, is the Spa a the Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen — as well as offering all the massages, scrubs, wraps and facials your heart could desire, they do a signature eaglewood treatment that you won’t find anywhere else. Venturing outside? Try the SLF International Spa Club (Water Cube) which offers five-star treatment at cheap-as-chips prices. If you fancy getting your wellness fix outdoors, you’ll be spoilt for choice, too. Explore Shenzhen’s many parks — try Mangrove Park, Lychee Park, or Lianhua Park — or perhaps take a hike on Wutong or Nanshan Mountain.
Spa at the Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen: 138 Fuhua Third Road, Futian, +86-755-8826-8888
Water Cube: 1-6/F Gangcheng Huating (Huanggang Border Crossing), Futian District, Shenzhen, +86-755-8297-8888
Note: The author stayed as a guest of the Four Seasons Hotel Shenzhen.
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