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Fine Green China

06-09china_robin

Photo: Robin Moyer

SHANGHAI

As the wealthiest (and boomingest) city on the mainland, it's not surprising that Shanghai's architecture has a distinct futuristic slant. Look closely, however, and you'll find some historic gems. The Bund district, situated on the banks of the Huangpu River north of the old walled city, is home to dozens of fine European neoclassical buildings, while the quaint alleys of the Old City hark back to a more romantic, less hurried Shanghai.

Where to Play

Shanghai Silport Golf Club ****
This modern American-style layout hosted the prestigious Volvo China Open for six straight years (1999–2004), and it's twice been named the Asian Tour's most accommodating venue of the year. The generous fairways lead to large well-bunkered greens that have some of the best putting surfaces in China. There are prettier settings, but the elegant hacienda-style clubhouse more than compensates.
Dian-Shan Lake, Kunshan, Jiangsu; 011-86/512-5748-1111, tigerbeach.com. Yardage: 7,061. Par: 72. GREENS FEES: $100–$120. ARCHITECT: Bob Martin, 1996.

Sheshan Golf Club ****
The majority of courses around Shanghai are rather flat and featureless, but fortunately the Singapore-based design firm of Nelson & Haworth came up with this rolling, tree-lined layout that should once again provide a good test for Tiger & Co. at the HSBC Champions tournament in November. For such a new development, the course has settled in extremely well. Look out for the par-five eighth, an uncanny knockoff of Augusta's thirteenth.
Lin Yin Xin Avenue, Sheshan National Tourism Resort; 011-86/021-5779-8088, sheshangolf.com. Yardage: 7,143. Par: 72. GREENS FEES: $100–$160. ARCHITECT: Nelson & Haworth, 2003.

Where to Stay

The Japanese-managed Garden Hotel (gardenhotelshanghai.com) is one of the better five-star offerings, but for a glimpse into Shanghai's past, stay in the North building at the Peace Hotel (shanghaipeacehotel.com) on the Bund. Formerly known as the Cathay Hotel, it's one of the city's most historic buildings.

Where to Eat

Shanghainese food is largely an amalgamation of dishes from different regions of China, and the wood-paneled Big Fan is as good a place as any to try it. For excellent continental cuisine, head to M on the Bund—sister restaurant of Hong Kong's M at the Fringe—which also has some of the best views in town.

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