Travellers heading to Suzhou in eastern China now have two Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts properties to choose from following the opening this month of the group’s second hotel in the city, the Shangri-La Suzhou Yuanqu.

The new property, which comes 12 years after the opening of the Shangri-La Hotel, Suzhou in 2007, forms part of the GCL Plaza integrated commercial complex in the new Suzhou Industrial Park central business district. Key landmarks nearby include the Suzhou International Expo Centre, the Suzhou Culture and Arts Centre, and the Jinji Lake scenic area.

Suzhou is about half an hour away from Shanghai by high-speed rail. A 10 to 20-minute car journey will take guests from the hotel to the SIP railway station and the Beijing-Shanghai/Nanjing-Shanghai expressway leading to Shanghai’s two airports – Pudong International Airport and Hongqiao International Airport – as well as Sunan Shuofang International Airport.

The Shangri-La Suzhou Yuanqu has 303 rooms and suites along with 16 serviced residences. Sizes start at a generous 48 sqm and rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows offering views over Jinji Lake and the city.

On the F&B front, the hotel offers two restaurants: all-day dining eatery Café Hong and regional Chinese restaurant Shang Garden. Guests can also head to the Sip Lounge for tea, cocktails and wines, and live entertainment.

Other facilities include a 24-hour gym on the seventh floor, and a 25-metre-long indoor pool along with a jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and spa. There’s also 10 events spaces at the hotel, comprising two pillarless ballrooms – 1,000sqm and 384sqm, respectively – seven multi-function rooms and a boardroom.

Shangri-La is expanding its presence in China with plans to open a new hotel at Beijing’s Shougang Park by the end of 2021 as well as a mixed-use development in Fuzhou by 2022.

Rival hotel group Accor, meanwhile, recently opened its 1,100th hotel in Asia-Pacific with the launch of the Sofitel Beijing Central.