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January 24, 2010

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Fun stores in Zizhong Rd area

THE Xintiandi complex stands out as a good example of the way development can be combined with restoration - two blocks of restored shikumen houses have been filled with high-end restaurants, bars and boutiques. Very close to this commercial area, a walk to Zizhong Road reveals a more genuine shikumen lifestyle, a combination of British-style terraced dwellings with elements of Chinese courtyard housing. The road exudes character contrasts, from the shabby houses and luxury serviced apartments, to many recently opened chic boutiques. The section between Danshui and Madang roads is especially worth exploring. You will find a decent Japanese market, a DIY cake shop, and a cool boutique selling Lomo cameras and limited edition toys.

GL Japan Plaza for sushi, sashimi sets

At GL Japan Plaza located at the intersection of Zizhong and Madang roads, you can find a fascinating variety of fresh seafood, beef, pickled, dried and canned food, bread, snacks, ready-to-eat meals, fresh fruits and vegetables, beverages and dairy products from Japan. The open food counters display fresh sashimi and sushi, with many options for a convenient takeaway lunch box, including grilled fish, tempura and even famous Onsen Tamago (hot spring egg). The sashimi counter is a highlight because much of the fresh raw fish is supplied daily from Nagasaki, including fatty tuna, yellowtail and red porgy. Staff can also prepare sashimi or sushi sets to order according to your budget and needs. The goods are of the highest standard at reasonable prices. Also the cashier system is well organized and efficient. A visit to GL Japan Plaza is a highly recommended experience for both Japanese residents and lovers of their food.

Opening hours: 10am-10pm

Address: B1, No. 1-6, 222 Madang Rd (the entrance is on Zizhong Rd)

Tel: 5382-8802

Playtime with Pi's cameras, toys

The new fashion shop Pi has chosen white decor as its dominant tone so that its eclectic range of fun toys, cameras and footwear stands out. Behind the frosted glass door bearing the Pi logo "" is a range of items to gladden young and old hearts. Think about colorful Lomo cameras, complete sets of hand-made Nike SB kids' shoes, several limited edition Medicom Toy products, and geek and chic Mimoco USBs. Store manager Yukis said Pi is the first fashion store in Shanghai to combine the sale of the evergreen Lomo camera, lighting, Be@rbrick collectable designer toys and KJL jewelry. Kenneth Jay Lane's KJL Jewelry is one of the most distinguishing features of the store with Pi dedicated to creating an accessible outlet for everyday wearers who are interested in purchasing high-end fashion jewelry. A complete range of Nike, Adidas and Bape kids' shoes is another highlight in the store, with pairs ranging in price from 20 yuan to 4,800 yuan. And for lovers of the Lomo camera, models carried in the store are in pink, blue, yellow and green and priced from 400 yuan to 600 yuan.

Opening hours: 11:30am-9pm

Address: 349 Zizhong Rd

Tel: 1356-4127-165

Choice for chocolate indulgence

Your can't miss Choice with the sweet smells of chocolate wafting from the tiny store. The theme of fun is evident from the wall of heart-shaped customers' messages to the famous cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse, Hello Kitty and other cuties in the window. But its wicked appeal will be to chocaholics through its DIY service allowing customers to make their own chocolate and cakes, one of its most remarkable features. Customers can choose their own shapes and styles and draw on ingredients imported by the store, such as the best Belgian chocolate. Every 60 grams of chocolate costs 80 yuan, and it's 6 yuan for every additional gram. Customers need to book in advance if they are interested in baking their own cakes and making chocolate. Choice also provides an ordering service in which they will make cake or chocolate according to a customer's needs, but it's more expensive than DIY. The most popular shapes selected by customers are Ferrari cars (458 yuan) and Barbie dolls (500 yuan). During the wedding season, Choices can provide a full range of items, including special chocolate candy according to customer requirements.

Opening hours: 10am-9pm

Address: 349 Zizhong Rd

Tel: 1391-6159-546

Relaxing Jade Massage

The city boasts a plethora of spas and massage places offering services where one can put the feet up and rest after a long day. Jade Massage is one such venue for nearby residents, where the senses are immediately awakened by the peaceful Oriental design. It offers simple, popular treatments to pamper from head to toe. Most regular customers want the oil body massage (225 yuan/60 min) and foot massage with crystal (130 yuan/60 min) that provide relaxation, rejuvenation and therapeutical benefits. The ambience has been orchestrated to soothe, calm and slow down one's momentum to receive the full benefits. With purchase of a 3,000-yuan membership card, you are entitled to 5,000 yuan worth of treatments.

Opening hours: 11am-1am

Address: 367 Zizhong Rd

Tel: 6384-8762


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