As the Shanghai summer heat turns to a full-out BBQ, the last few weeks of July promise some great events and new openings. There's a lot to explore in the run-up to August, including a flip-flop pop-up shop, an array of new restaurants, and some cool gigs.
The major music news comes from Japan, with post-rockers Mono returning to town on August 17. They have played twice in Shanghai before, and both gigs were epic. They'll be playing from their live album Holy Ground as well as their almost-finished studio album (their sixth), For My Parents. Tickets go for 200 RMB at the door.
If your summer wardrobe needs an injection of style, head to Source on Xinle Lu, where everything is reduced by 50% until mid-August. The only things not half price are Urban Ears headphones, Cayler & Sons caps and limited edition Nikes. Take your pick from Ksubi, Cheap Monday, Insight, Volcom, Pointer and more.
July 21 sees the arrival of Hed Kandi with Lucy Stone at the Geisha for a bikini-themed summer party. Entry and a drink for 100 RMB only, and ladies get in free before midnight.
Before you head there, warm up for the evening ahead at the TICT Disco Beach Bash ft. Razor & Lindberg, at the Rico Rico beach. Dance to tunes by Trix, Mau Mau and the Uhhh, while you cool off with iced cocktails. Entry is 100 RMB.
If disco isn't your think, try Rumi & Skyfish at Shelter on the 21. Brought over from Japan by Subculture, Rumi is one of Japan's best female MCs. Skyfish hails from Tokyo, and plays a mix of hip hop, jungle and grime. Tickets 50 RMB at the door.
It's Belgian National Day on the 21 too, so celebrate in style at De Refter. If you're Belgian, you get a free draft beer. If not, it's 50% off until 21:00. There's also a 500 RMB prize up for grabs.
In the news…
If you're in need of a summer vacation but don't have the cash, look no further than Spring Airlines. On August 10, they're launching a cut-price Shanghai to Bangkok route. It will leave daily from Pudong Airport at 13:30 and reach Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport at 17:10. The return leg will leave from Bangkok at 18:10 and arrive at PVG at 23:35. A one-way flight starts at 399 RMB (excluding fuel surcharges, infrastructure charges and other taxes). Book online at http://www.china-sss.com/en, or call 4008206222.
British chain Pizza Marzano has added to its stable of Shanghai branches with an opening on the fifth floor of the Grand Gateway mall, in the location formerly used by Crystal Jade. The interior is spacious, with brick walls and a huge glass window.
If you haven't already checked out the new bike joint, Handle Bar, on Yongkang Lu, now is the ideal time, as they have just announced a special summer happy hour. There's one condition – you have to arrive on a fixie. When you've proven your credentials, you get to drink two-for-one on draft Stella (usually 40 RMB each), Chimay (50 RMB) and cocktails (70 RMB). It's almost worth buying a fixie if you don't already have one.
If you're in the market for some new flip-flops, legendary Brazilian brand Havaiana are launching a pop-up store this weekend outside Jiuguang department store beside Jing'an Temple. While cheap as chips in their native Brazil, the flip-flops are pricey elsewhere, so expect to pay around 200 RMB for the simplest designs, and more for elaborate patterns. With 70 styles to choose from, you're sure to find something that suits. They'll also be selling special pins to decorate your new shoes.
The Yanping / Wuding area continues to grow into the newest hot spot. Already home to Brioche Doree, Sushi Abuse, Kush, Dvino and CaliBurger, the corner now has a branch of popular wine bar Enoterra. It's slightly bigger than the Anfu bar, and has a more open feel, with high ceilings and wrap-around windows. The food and wine is on par, and there's a special two-for-one happy hour running through July. Watch out for a second branch of French staple Café des Stagiaires, which is slated to open next door within the next few weeks.
News coming from the USA suggests that diner chain Denny's is soon to break into the China market. They'll be starting in second tier cities and provinces first, but it surely won't be long before Shanghai gets its own branch.
Sad news for stalwarts of Shanghai's bar scene: Velvet is closing this weekend after seven years of loyal service. The Julu Lu legend is just as famous for its tasty pizza as for its lounge-lizard clientele. However, it's not all bad. The bar will undergo a renovation over the summer, and open as PataNegra in the fall.
Italian restaurant Mari e Monti in Xujiahui has also shut its doors, along with Strip Prime Steakhouse. Another summer casualty is Bikes and Friends – the bar dedicated to two wheels – on Fuxing Lu. The managers have been locking horns with neighbors, so there's a chance that it might reopen if the issues get smoothed out.
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Keywords: Shanghai watchdog Shanghai new openings Shanghai July 2012 news Shanghai events 2012
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