Wanda Reign is the luxury brand in Chinese hospitality group Wanda Hotels and Resorts’ portfolio. Wanda Reign on the Bund officially opened in June last year, and is the third flagship hotel after properties in Wuhan and Chengdu.
WHERE IS IT?
Situated at the southern end of the Bund, about a kilometre away from crowded Nanjing Road East, and with great views over the Huangpu River to Pudong, which is accessible via the nearby Renmin Road and Yan’an Road East tunnels.
WHAT’S IT LIKE?
First impressions began at Pudong airport when a uniformed driver greeted me and led me to a brand-new Rolls-Royce Phantom, which transported me in fabulous luxury – with wifi – to the hotel in 40 minutes.
The hotel has a contemporary feeling, and doesn’t stand out from the surrounding buildings. However, enter the lobby with its 10-metre-high ceiling and you’ll be stunned by how grand it is – almost like a ballroom. The dark-marble floor has an attractive geometric pattern, more exotic marble coats the walls, the ceiling is supported by four huge pillars, and at one end is a huge painting titled Jinxiudongfang, tailor-made for the hotel by artist Shiqi – a bustling modernist display of Shanghai scenes.
A multitude of Shanghai-related art pieces decorate the hotel. Some might think so much layered colour everywhere is too much, but I think the many-hued design suits the hotel’s grand, luxurious environment. It’s certainly eye-catching. The front desk counters are on the right in what feels like an elegant VIP area. Here I was told that there is no executive lounge as everyone is treated as a VIP.
There are 193 rooms including 14 suites, with sizes ranging from 45 to 288 sqm, and views including Pudong, Huangpu River or Yuyuan Garden. I stayed in a Grand Deluxe Bund View room on the 15th floor, a corner room with two large glass windows facing the Bund and Huangpu River.
A massage chair was placed beside the window – a rare amenity in a hotel room and much appreciated, especially with the view. The room is decorated in earth tones of light brown and cream, and the design is inspired by old Shanghainese garden villas, but with modern touches. A classic magnolia silk screen on the wall behind the bed, plus rhinestones, mosaic tiling and gold-plated taps in the bathroom amply illustrated the room’s luxurious intent. Advanced technology is well represented too, including in-room controls via an iPad, a security camera linked to the TV that shows who is at the door, a heated floor system in the bathroom and an automated multifunction toilet.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS
Five restaurants include the all-day dining Café Reign and lobby lounge on level 1, and on the fifth level the He Japanese and River Drunk Chinese restaurants – the latter offering delicious and refined Huaiyang dishes. On the top floor of the hotel, Marc has a huge outdoor balcony overlooking the river and Pudong (see image on previous pages). During the day, its restaurant offers a French menu and afternoon tea created by Michelin-starred chef Marc Meneau. At night, Marc changes into a trendy lounge bar with avant-garde European decorations and artworks.
The hotel offers 1,100 sqm of function space on level 3, including three multifunctional rooms and a 720 sqm pillarless grand ballroom, which provides a 180-degree view of the river and the Bund, and contains an 82 sqm, high-resolution LED screen and B&O audio system.
Club Reign offers members a wine and cigar bar, gym, swimming pool, Shui Spa and plush karaoke rooms. Guests can use the facilities for free.
Located in a less developed area of the Bund, with convenient access to the city on both sides of the river, this is an opulent hotel that shouts modern Chinese luxury and offers sumptuous extras such as its many artworks and the in-room massage chair with a view to die for. Perhaps not everyone’s style, but service standards are high and I really enjoyed my stay.
PRICE Internet rates for a Grand Deluxe Bund View room in mid-February start from RMB2,970 (US$431) including taxes and surcharges.
CONTACT 538 Zhong Shan Dong Er Road, Huangpu District, Shanghai;
tel +86 21 5368 8888
By Delia Yin