Photographer's Note

Xin Tian Di - literally, New, Heaven, Earth – is a fusion of East and West.

Once, there was laundry hanging everywhere, people, kids, flying kites, everyday experiences, in an evolving neighbourhood.

Design is what makes Xin Tian Di so attractive, inside and out. It is about breathing life into places, and artistic freedom.

When you walk into Xin Tian Di, you will get the taste both of Shanghai in the 1920's and the sonic modern lifestyle of urbanites of the 21st century.

Each of the two to three-story Shikumen looks unique, with retained the antique walls, tiles and exterior of the Shikumen housing of old Shanghai. On the other hand, its interior embodies a totally different world of international gallery, bars and cafes, boutiques or theme restaurants.

I pictured one of the narrow brick lanes and communal courtyards that define shikumen—a unique blend of Chinese and Western architectural features with modernity in the background.

Perhaps China's rapid modernization need not obliterate the old, and perhaps the development has demonstrated the viability of architectural preservation and restoration in a city that appeared to be on its way to destroying every last shikumen?

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Additional Photos by May Mah (mayjayne) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 376 W: 23 N: 1134] (7380)
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