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Xintiandi

新天地

Xintiandi marks a sea change in Shanghai’s urban development policies. Rather than razing a block of dilapidated shikumen, or “stone gate,” homes, the Shanghai government, in cooperation with real estate development firm Shui On, commissioned American architect Ben Wood to redesign and renovate them. The end result is an upscale nightlife, dining and shopping hub. It’s a popular spot for Shanghai’s well-heeled residents as well as the tour coach set. And they’re here as much for the shopping as the history, because, in a priceless twist of irony, this center of outright consumerism is also home to the site of the First Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. It's something of a pilgrimage site for patriotic types.

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