I stayed at the New Harbour Serviced Apartments in May during the Shanghai Expo. After reading so many negative reviews, I was expecting
to have many problems upon arrival. Now the Big Surprise, I didn't experience a single problem that other travelers have been complaining about.
So I would like to word my review like a hotel "OPERATING MANUAL"
for the benefit of future guests:
The receptionist asked if we needed help with the bags. The nice and prompt bellboy carried all bags to the room. No Tipping in China. If they don't request to bring bags up, you can request it (i had to request when
departing), if bellboy is busy, they can take your room number and drop it
I was prepared to have to rent utensils for the room. In reality, You already get 2 place settings on the dining room table (plates, bowls,
spoons, chopsticks). Also 2 glasses in the kitchen for the water dispenser and tea bags.
If you request utensils, this means a Pot and Pan plus stove cooking
utensils. It only costs 10 Yuan for the entire week! We never needed
these cooking tools, as we only used the microwave after eating out.
So utensils means stove items, not basic eating utensils which are already in the room when you arrive.
The air conditioning is NOT broken all the time. This is a Japanese Ceiling A/C with a white remote control. The black remote is for the TV and the White one is for the A/C. You can turn the A/C on and off and adjust tempurature with the remote. The A/C is off when you arrive. It is
your responsibility to turn it on. This solves the mystery reviews about
the broken A/C s that never get fixed.
TV channels in room:
ESPN Asia, CNN Asia, and Newschannel Asia were the 3 english channels. I also ran across a couple of Japanese, DW Germany, 1
French channel. No British Sky or BBC though. No kids channels, not even chinese ones (my 5 year old's disappointment). Altogether a good 30 chinese channels.
As previous reviewers have stated, 1 buffet ticket per day per room. You
must buy additional tickets for additional adults. For Children, you may not use or purchase tickets (adults only) ! But you will pay at the buffet and sign to the room for each child (30 RMB) or half the price of an adult. These are their rules. Just go along. I wanted to just buy all the tickets for my child in advance, but this is not the policy. Buffet tickets for adults. Sign at table for children. MY MISTAKE.
Service (Losing Face):
My Buffet ticket problem could have turned into a misunderstanding (like
what previous reviewers write about) but I just remembered that it is
always my mistake, and ask what the rules are. You cannot accuse a chinese person of making a mistake because they will lose face. Keeping this in mind, I NEVER had a problem at this hotel because they always made an effort to solve MY PROBLEMS. I think this is why the western hotel chains always finish on the top of the list in on shanghai
tripadvisor. The western hotel chains train employees how to deal with
foreigners better than the chinese hotels. If you keep the "losing face" thing in mind, you should not have any service related problems in any of the chinese hotels.
There was a self serve laundry and a full serve one. I decided to give the
full service laundry a go, which is all done by the maid. Just count all your
clothes and estimate the number of each clothing type on the form. Leave
laundry bag outside room with form on top of bag. I got all of our laundry
done for the entire week for only 60 RMB ($10).
I went downstairs to ask for the rate to use the internet in our room. The
staff told me the internet was free! The default website made me agree to a fee, but when I settled up at the end of the week, I did not get charged a penny! We had a standard 2 bedroom apartment. I don't know if this has anything to do with us getting free internet or now. The room type may matter though.
I was under the assumption that the cheapest groceries would be at the
largest supermarkets. This is absolutely not true. I actually went to
the large City Market on the bottom of the Times Square Mall and the prices were 3 times to 10 times higher than the little market across the street from the hotel (Family Mart). There is also a Carrefour in the bottom of another mall, once again foreigner prices 3 times higher. So do all of your grocery shopping across the street. You get real chinese prices there. A 12 oz bottle of coke was about 40 cents USD. In
the USA, this bottle of coke is $1.59 now.
This was my favorite part of the hotel. A fantastic hotel pool, a perfect tempurature, and not too much chlorine! The pool area is as nice and
clean as the photos depict! I liked the fact that the pool did not close until 10:00pm. What a treat! I went swimming after I came home each and
every evening! Watch out if you have young kids, both sides of the pool are the same depth (5 1/2 feet or so) I just carried my 5 year old son around the pool in my arms.
I have been planning my Shanghai trip for a few months now, Just 1 year
ago this hotel was #12 in the Shanghai Hotel reviews. In the last few months, the bund construction noise has dropped this hotel to #39.
The construction is now over. The hotel should at least climb back up to #20 in the next few months. At least I had a 5 star stay!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Beautifully combines the elegance of hotel living with the comforts of home. this apartment-style Shanghai hotel offers a refreshing respite from the flurry of activities in the area. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- New Harbour Serviced Apartments Hotel Shanghai
- New Harbour Serviced Apartments Shanghai