Located in the glitzy commercial district near West Nanjing Road, the overall mood of Middle House is dark and sexy.
Why we love this: Any traveler looking to experience the swanky side of Shanghai deserves to stay in an exclusive hotel. We can’t help but love Middle House for the haven of swish Italian and Shanghainese design that it is. With striking artworks in every corner and alluring contemporary spaces, Middle House is exactly where you need to be to hang with the luxe in-crowd in Shanghai.
The House Collective is renowned for its smashing contemporary luxury design, but Middle House just may be the slickest one in the bunch. Located in the glitzy commercial district near West Nanjing Road, Middle House offers jetsetters the ideal cosmopolitan stay in Shanghai.
The overall mood of Middle House is dark and sexy. Black and dark green walls with undulating textures encase guests in an exclusive futuristic world. Piero Lissoni, the architect who designed Middle House, introduced his bold hyper-sleek Italian aesthetic to Shanghai. While the facade and spaces are minimalist and Italian, the furniture and artworks are pointedly Chinese. Original artworks were commissioned for the hotel around the theme “I Dream of China.” Showstopping artworks and sculptures, particularly in porcelain and ceramic, pay homage to China’s long heritage of exquisite artistry and craftsmanship. Oversize crates of porcelain jars, entire walls lined with ceramic vases and bold canvas paintings display traditional Chinese motifs reinterpreted into contemporary works.
The hotel features three restaurants, bar lounge, indoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room, full-service spa and gym. Every inch of Middle House is state-of-the-art and chic to a tee. The underground pool is a serene oasis of clean lines and neutral tones, where guests can lounge and dip into blissfully heated waters. The fitness center is stacked with so much cutting-edge equipment, that even working out in the gym is enjoyable and hardly a chore. The bar lounge on the third floor is always buzzing with well-heeled travelers and locals who are there to conduct business or be seen at the trendiest place in town.
The level of warmth and authenticity that the staff exudes is exceptional for such an upmarket hotel. The House Collective ethos is making every guest feel comfortable and at home in each of their “Houses.” It’s easy to genuinely get to know individual staff members who are all attentive, personable and fun. This candid rapport adds a personal dimension to the stay and will have guests wanting to check back in every time they touch down in Shanghai.
Room categories are divided by the number of square meters in each room. Hotel rooms measure between 50-90 square meters (538-971 sq ft) and residences ranging between 55-110 sqm are available for longer stays. Like the rest of the hotel, the design of the rooms is sharp and minimalist. Subtle Chinese motifs, like bird cages and calligraphy, stand out amongst the clean lines on the walls and headboards
Every room has ample space and includes a comfy living area set in front of soaring floor-to-ceiling windows. The views look out to various levels of surrounding skyscrapers and urban sprawl. If you’re lucky enough to snag a swanky Studio 90, the ultra-wide windows extend to the bathroom, where you can take a racy shower or a bath in the ceramic oval tub with views. If taking an exhibitionist shower isn’t quite your style, not to worry. High tech shades and curtains completely block light and visibility at the touch of a button next to your bed.
As expected, it’s all top-notch gadgets for Middle House guests. The Bluetooth speakers are a unique collaboration between Native Union x La Boite, a model not commonly seen in most hotel rooms. The understated rustic design possesses a mighty range of features, including euphoric acoustics and multiple AUX and USB portals. The rooms come with illy coffee instead of Nespresso and a maxi-bar instead of a mini-bar. The maxi-bar might as well be a personal wine cellar, as it comes stocked with multiple racks of high-end international wines. There’s also a large selection of waters, soft drinks and juices provided free of charge. Funnily enough, our favorite feature is the one that’s not very high tech at all. Instead of having a master power switch in the key slot, there’s an oversize satin rope next to the bed that you pull to turn all the lights off. Just another small Middle House feature that adds tons of comfort and charm to your stay.
Frasca is a place that you can count on to have a quality Italian meal. It’s extremely convenient for guests that it’s located on the lobby level of the residential building. No matter the time of day, you know you’re in for a good time.
The decor is straightforward and contemporary. Being at the restaurant feels nothing but elegant and welcoming. Start the meal off with a glass of champagne and a warm, fluffy bread basket. The menu has all the beloved Italian classics like Fritto Misto, Salumi, Pappardelle al Ragu, Milanese and Lasagna al Forno. Everything is authentic and done absolutely right. The Linguine al Astice is a must, as the lobster is cooked perfectly, soft and juicy, with the pasta. The Iberico Pork is crispy on top while fatty and succulent on the bottom. Paired with both sweet and savory sauces, it’s the ideal entree to share, as the wood grilled meat is extremely rich and filling. The all-Italian wine list will have connoisseurs in a tizzy. For the most deliciously delicate, complex white, go for a glass of Verdicchio, which we’re still pining for after months.
Sui Tang Li:
Sui Tang Li may be a new-age Chinese restaurant, but don’t underestimate the authenticity or quality of their cooking. Everything on the menu is delectable and worth the upscale price tag. Located on the mezzanine level of the residential building, Sui Tang Li sports a simple and sleek modern design. It’s a bright space with an upbeat atmosphere that’s perfect for gatherings with family, friends or clients.
The menu features many classic, made-to-share dim sum and banquet dishes. Many of them include subtle contemporary touches, which work beautifully and don’t take away from the authenticity of the original dish. Think Lotus Leaf Wrapped Glutinous rice with Sea Cucumber and Lobster Soup with Crispy Jasmine Rice. The Jasmine Tea Smoked Pomfret, tender and crispy fried fish drizzled in a light tangy glaze, is lip-smackingly good and impossible to stop snacking on. You can also count on dishes like White Pepper Grilled Crab and Fried Rice with Barbecued Pork to fall back on that will obviously please any crowd.
- Maxi-Bar with premium refreshments
- illy espresso machine and selection of Jing teas
- Luxury bath amenities by SV Casa and Bamford
- Wireless high-speed internet
- Lululemon yoga mat
- 24 hour state-of-the-art fitness center
- Mi Xun spa
- Indoor swimming pool, sauna & steam room
- 24 hour in-room dining