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By Joanna Lei, eChinacities.com|
Fuzhou Road is one of the oldest roads in Shanghai. Back in the mid-19th century it was dotted with bookstores, publishing houses, press offices, as well as some 151 brothels. With so much history, it's not surprising that Fuzhou Road is considered one of China's top cultural streets (depending on what your idea of culture is). Today, these brothels are long gone and replaced by more wholesome offerings. As you walk along Fuzhou Road, you will pass numerous stores selling school, office and art supplies, gift shops, art and antique stores. It would not be an exaggeration to call Fuzhou Road Shanghai's "book street", with book and magazine stores in almost every corner. More than just books however, theater, cinema, music, and the arts thrive as well, thereby retaining its moniker as "Culture Street" from over a century ago. Below are a few noteworthy stops to make:
Fuzhou Road, Shanghai.
1) Yifu Theater 上海天蟾京剧中心逸夫舞台
If you really want to experience traditional Chinese theater shows, head over to Yifu Theater. Also known as Tianchan Beijing Opera, its history goes way back to 1925, but it was rebuilt on April 28, 1994 with the help of generous funds from Hong Kong industrialist and Peking opera enthusiast Mr. Shao Yifu (hence the name of the theater). Having attracted drama troupes from all over mainland China, as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan, it has been said that if one has "not performed here, one cannot be famous". There are a total of 928 seats in the auditorium, divided into two floors. It is also well-equipped with professional stage equipment and boasts a "refined drama environment". Schedules change regularly, so call in advance for show schedules and/ or bookings.
Add: 701 Fuzhou Road, Shanghai (near Yunnan Zhong Road)
Tel: 021 6322 5294; 5353 0054 (ticketing hotline)
Price: Tickets start at 30 RMB
2) Gudian Shoucang Antique Shop古典收藏
If you somehow feel like you are the youngest being in this store, you're probably right. This store only sells antiques that are at least 100 years old, some dating back to the great Chinese dynasties. If you fancy antiques, you may just be able to satisfy than yearning with some authentic storage chests, decorative wall screens, jade sculptures, as well as a huge selection of wooden furniture and even chunky jade jewellery.
Add: 683 Fuzhou Road, Shanghai
Tel: 182 2109 9778; 1896 490 3661
Price: 100-1,000,000 RMB
3) Tomorrow Special Price Bookstore 明天特价书店
With two locations, this store sells books by weight. There is a good but limited selection of cookbooks in several languages including French, German, Swedish, and of course English, including ones by world-renowned Western chefs. You can also find books on travel, health, art and design, home interiors, business and Chinese culture.
Add: 524 Fuzhou Road, Shanghai
Tel: 021 3366 0230
Price: Prices range from 11 RMB per jin (500g) to 30 RMB per jin
4) Shanghai Book City 上海书城
Aptly named book city, this is a booklover's paradise with seven floors of books; however, they are predominantly in Chinese. The 4th Floor is dedicated to foreign languages and Chinese language study, while on the 7th floor you can find English books on various topics including business, art, photography, fashion, music and culture, as well as popular English novels by bestselling international authors.
Add: 465 Fuzhou Road, Shanghai
Tel: 021 6391 4848
Price: Prices vary
5) Shanghai Foreign Languages Bookstore上海外交书店
Dedicated to English books, if you are into learning more about Chinese culture, your first stop should be to the first floor, where you can browse both locally printed and imported titles on everything from Shanghai girls to Chinese architecture, to doing business in China. Interested in learning a foreign language or perhaps some English teaching aids? The second floor sells foreign language books as well as TOEFL, GRE, and IELTS test reviewers, as well as management technology and medical science books. The third floor holds design and art books, while the fourth floor carries imported bestsellers, biographies and business management & consulting. The store accepts credit cards and refunds at all direct outlets if returned in good condition within seven days, with receipt. Free delivery if you spend at least 200 RMB for books published in China, or 1,500 RMB on imported books.
Add: 390 Fuzhou Road, Shanghai
Tel: 021-232-04994； 232-04995
Price: Prices vary