Shopping in Shanghai
Shanghai's shopping scene befits its economic status and the city boasts easily the best shopping on mainland China.
High-end retail outlets such as Plaza 66 on Nanjing Lu, Three on the Bund and Bund 18 complement Nanjing Xi Lu's status as Shanghai's Fifth Avenue. You can find super-cool boutique clothes outlets, art galleries and design stores at Xintiandi, Xinle Lu, Fuxing Lu, Taikang Lu and Changle Lu.
For tacky tourist memorabilia, nowhere can beat the Old Town area around Yu Yuan Gardens and Bazaar. Try Old Street or Dongtai Road Antiques Market. The most uniquely regional ware from Shanghai is the local blue cloth, patterned in blue and white and similar to batik cloth. The Chinese Printed Blue Nankeen Exhibition Hall, at 24, Lane 637, Changle Lu, is open daily 0900-1630, and is the highest quality producer of this. You can buy beautiful Suzhou-style ladies' silk slippers in hand-woven patterns at Suzhou Cobblers, 17 Fuzhou Lu (near the Bund). Good-quality Chinese porcelain with hand-painted modern designs is available from Spin, Building 3, Lane 758 Julu Lu (near Fumin Lu), 1200-2200. Hu & Hu Antiques, 1685 Wuzhong Lu, by Laohongjing Lu, is a little way out of town, but is Shanghai's most reputable collector, restorer and vendor of genuine Chinese antiques.
Parkson on Shaanxi Lu, typifies the international-style department stores in the former French Concession area. Further out of town, hypermarkets and mega-malls are sprouting on typically Chinese scale, with Ikea, B&Q, Wal-Mart and Carrefour operating huge premises.
Usual shopping hours in Shanghai are 1000-2200.
VAT is charged at 17%, which cannot be reclaimed upon departure.