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Reviewed April 24, 2008

I like this quaint hotel for its preservation of the old French Club building, which has become most of the lobby and some of the shops and coffee house. The restoration was sensitively done, which shows through the details of the neo-classical style architecture and the decor choices e.g. the chandeliers, the tiles and marble used etc etc. You will feel a good piece of 1930s Shanghai in la belle epoque, something which excites me each time I go through the lobby.

The rooms are a drab too old in my opinion. They look like trapped in 1980s style, with the carpets worn (but clean) and the TV set from my high school days! The bathroom was small, with no separate showers and the tap was reeking with rust and age. I thought the room which my colleague stayed in at the 22nd floor looked much better. I think the renovations have yet to be carried out to the lower-floor rooms, one of which I was staying in.

Otherwise, the room's amenities were adequate. The toilet seat was an interesting electronic one, Japanese style, which sent out a jet of water each time I press a button. To wash the soil out of your you-know-what! Trust the Japanese to think of this!

That the hotel was Japanese run was obvious from the moment you stepped in. The counter staff display a badge stating how proficient they are in the Japanese language, and the number of Japanese guests could have been in the hundreds. THere are also displays in Japanese throughout.

SO being so Japanese means service levels should be higher than what you'd usually get in Shanghai. And for this, the hotel did not disappoint.

Let me quote you an example: I asked for a big bed as that's my preference. They originally run out of such beds when I first booked, but I think they noted my preference and when I checked in, they allowed that for me. Nice touch and means so much to me.

All in all, this hotel is a dated outfit with some parts crying out for an overhaul. But its software makes up for a lot of the wants in the hardware, and I think I will likely wish to return, especially to one of their renovated rooms.

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled on business
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2  Thank SaltheFatFish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 16, 2008

The Okura´s entrance is an architectural landmark in a very nice garden in a good area of Shanghai. The lobby is very well appointed and it is a pleasant place to be. Room was very clean all around, comfortable if a touch small and a bit dated. My TV was a very old Hitachi, I mean really old, almost a collectible. Cable reception was of poor quality perhaps for that reason. If you like quiet and don´t mind staying in a 1980s feel Japanese hotel, this might be your choice.

Stayed: April 2008
Thank Paulo B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2007

Not a bad spot and recommended to me by a well travelled Japanese friend. In my case, the stay involved an overnighter after a 3 week business trip in China and so I appreciated the calm and cleanliness of the rooms, the view of the gardens - especially watching the people exercise in the morning, tea in the lobby lounge, an excellent sushi dinner and very good morning breakfast. I also enjoyed the elegant style of the place despite its occasional 1970's appearance tower block. Service was friendly and the porters were excellent.

There are probably better places to stay in Shanghai but this hotel was central and comfortable.

  • Stayed: November 2007, traveled on business
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Thank hobbit_baggins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2007

The Okura Garden Hotel is top notch. The lobby area and public rooms are in the old French Club, which was the social center for the French expatriates living in the old French Concession. They have been beautifully restored, especially the lobby lounge. There is a lovely garden, actually a small private park, in front of the hotel. The hotel rooms are in a 33-story tower that has been added at the back (ala the Helmsley Palace Hotel in NYC).

Our room(#2222) had a king-size bed and lots of storage space, but the sitting area was pretty tight. The bathroom was outstanding with plenty of counter space, a large square sink, a toilet with a heated 'bidet' seat, and a separate glassed-in room with a shower area in front of a tub with a window looking into the bedroom (for watching TV during your bubble bath? for putting on a show for your significant other?). Fortunately, for the more modest there was a venetian blind on that window.

The lights for reading in bed were completely inadequate. The table lamps next to the bed are too dim, so you need the ceiling light in the center of the room to read a book or newspaper.

High-speed internet is 120rmb per 24-hours. We had a problem with a loose connection and the hotel's tech guy was there to fix it immediately. The bell staff and room staff were all cheerful and spoke adequate English.

The staff at the concierge desk communicated effectively in English and understood and responded to our needs. The front desk staff was a little less able to communicate.

Room service dinners were excellent and the service was impeccable. The breakfast buffet was ample with plenty of choices of American-style food. Unfortunately there was always a line for tables.

The hotel's location is a little bit remote from The Bund and People's Square area, but it is just two blocks from a very nice shopping street and taxis are cheap and plentiful all over the city.

The Okura Garden is clearly a 5-star operation, well-managed, comfortable and sumptuous.

  • Stayed: October 2007
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Thank Tourist803811
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2007

The Okura is in a 1920's ish building, which is located in the French Concession area of Shanghai. The lobby area is well maintained and has a nice historic feel to it.

The hotel seems to target Japanese business travelers and the tour bus set.

The rooms were only so so. For the price, I expected much more. But then again the last time I was in Shanghai, I stayed at the Le Meridien so anything would probably pale in comparison to that, at least room wise. The decor was dated although everything was clean and functional. The bathroom did feature a typical Japanese toilet, with a variety of functions. Seat warmer, multiple spray options, etc. Whenever I turned the light on for the bathroom, the toilet made a "start up sound" so that took a bit of getting used to.

The internet cost was 120 rmb. Sadly it didn't always work and was painfully slow when it did.

The breakfast buffet was good and offered a large selection of items. The breakfast room was very busy.

The hotel staff was very good. All of the employees wore a nametag that indicated the languages that they spoke.

The hotel is located on a side street just off of Huai Hai Zhong Lu, which is one of the main shopping streets for Shanghai. A metra station is on the same block as the hotel. A Parkson's department store is also on the same block. The Parkson's has a nice grocery store in the basement and the ever popular McDonald's and Hagen Daz (sp?) at the front entrance of the store. A Starbucks can be found across the street from Parksons .

If you have time, take a walk around the neighborhood as you will see a nice mix of old and new China.

  • Stayed: May 2007
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Thank slug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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