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August 15, 2007

Raising the Roof

In a race to outdo itself, Hyatt is pushing Shanghai's hospitality sky high.

Shanghai’s skyline already boasts more skyscrapers than Manhattan, yet the buildings keep sprouting. On the heels of the Grand Hyatt in Jin Mao Tower — the world’s highest hotel — the new twin-towered Hyatt on the Bund has been calculatingly constructed so every guestroom takes in a vista to remember: either the modern cityscape of Pudong across the Huangpu River, or the iconic architectural jumble along the Bund. Here, on the fashionable waterfront thoroughfare, Shanghai’s nouveau rich burn their yuan — it’s easily done at Armani and A-list eatery Jean-Georges, whose shared address is a Beaux-Arts building converted by Michael Graves.

Among the new Hyatt’s crack design team, Japanese firm SuperPotato dreamt up the four-story nightspot crowning the western tower. The split-personality space features a tapas bar, jazz club and “dance zone.” From up there you might spot the fast-rising Shanghai World Financial Center — future home of yet another Hyatt. This, the Park Hyatt, will cap the group’s portfolio when it opens as Shanghai’s premier property next year. Call it some strange version of sibling rivalry: commanding the top floors of the 101-story skyscraper, the Park Hyatt Shanghai will swipe the title from its “older” sister as the world’s highest hotel.

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read more: 02. Sleep | 05. Eat | 12. Shop

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