Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Galaxy Hotel in Shanghai, and the surrounding area

Galaxy Hotel in Shanghai is quite a nice hotel for business stay. It's quite pricey at RMB¥689, which is far more expensive then PJ Hilton with our company's corporate rate. It is located next to Rainbow Hotel which I've stay once during one my holiday tour to Shanghai.

Flight from KL to Shanghai was rather smooth despite me getting a mild cold. The last many days running around in the hot humid weather of Kuala Lumpur really wore me down. So the 28°C was a nice change. It wasn't too warm and neither was it cold.

The check in counter was located on the second floor so when I arrived I was a little lost as to where to check in! This was the first time coming to Shanghai not on a tour group so many things have do on my own. I was told to take either a taxi or bus, taxi would be quicker but costly at about RMB¥200 while the bus ride cost RMB¥24. Walking around the Pudong Airport I somehow ended up at the bus stop rather then the taxi stand.


I was actually looking for the taxi counter but there was none and wheb asking for directions the tourist information girls pointed me to the bus #3 instead. The bus ride may not have been fast, but I could get a bit of shut eye and occassionally take in the Shanghai skyline too!  The bus took me right to the front of Galaxy Hotel in just slightly over an hour. So it was fast and cheap!

Before I flew over to Shanghai, I printed some maps from Google Maps. Unfortunately it was wrong. Google Maps was rather riddled with location errors and this was not the first time I encountered wrongly placed hotel. (The correct GPS Coordinate for Galaxy Hotel is 121.40611, 31.20511. I took this reading from my room so guarantee it is right!)

So after checking in I was a little hungry, tried to look at the maps that I printed but it made no sense and decided to just take a chance and walk wherever the wind took me. The reception said the Friendship mall was just 5 minutes away but with no one to guide me which direction, I ended up taking a very long walk to Parkson at Zunyi Rd instead which suited me just fine!

Managed to get some toileteries from Watson which my elder sis-in-law requested and found an interesting wallet for my wife as a gift in Parkson.

Despite my poor command of Mandarin I could still get by mostly except where I need to really read and write. Fortunately I still retain some Mandarin though the usage may not be perfect, perhaps even odd, but it was good enough!

It was twilight when I finally settled down with my meal, watching the busy hustle and bustle of this part of Shanghai from the window of a noodle shop. I couldn't get hold of my other colleagues so decided to eat on my own. Besides it was more than a kilometer of walking to get back to hotel.

Actually walking on the streets gave me some interesting view of the Shanghai folk. Housing can range from nice posh apartment to very cramp low cost flat style accommodation.

The people also like to take to streets with their children either playing roller blades or just riding shotgun on their electric bikes. Some a little tad dangerous standing rather sitting! Spoted some adults playing a very traditional game, forget the name, but it was a weighted shuttlecock kick up in the air. Main objective is to keep the shuttlecock airborne as long as possible without using hands. No easy task! Also came across father disciplining their child which is good thing, can't spoil them, and I should do the same with mine too!

Anyway it was getting dark and better I get a walking back to Galaxy Hotel. I memorized my landmarks well so I could remember the exact way to walk back the 1.1km distance. If you are not local and a girl, the stretch is rather lonely so you might be better off taking a cab for safety. Though the entire walking journey was not an issue to me and gave a quick sweat from my brisk walk.

I needed to put in some time to study my presentation and also get some rest for my cold, so it was good for me to head back.

All in all, this Galaxy Hotel location is not too bad and I have a great view of the Shanghai from my 28th floor!

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