We live in the French Concession area of Shanghai. Its nice. really nice. My brother calls it the posh end of town. There are large, leafy tree-lined streets dotted with cafes, micro brewery pubs, restaurants, art galleries and boutiques. There are places to eat brunch, sip coffee, juices or cold imported and domestic craft beer. My first thoughts as I walked home from dropping my eldest at school was that it reminded me of being in Europe, but where exactly…Italy maybe? Then it hit me …
It’s just like France…!
Of course the French concession would be just like France. In fact apart from the constant possibility that you could be mown down by bikes, cars and buses streaming through pedestrian crossings reminding you you are absolutely in Shanghai, we could certainly be in France.
This area stopped being a French settlement in 1943, but there is still a definite french vibe to the area. I’ve met a number of french ex pats, there’s a french school on West Fuxing Road and of course the numerous places to get coffee and croissants. I’ve walked many times down West Fuxing Road, it’s where my eldest’s school is located. We’ve also explored the popular Anfu Road and Wulumuqi Road. There is still much more to explore and visit I’m also really excited for a night out here soon.
We had brunch in quite a fancy restaurant not far from the apartment called Chartres at the bottom of West Fuxing Road. It was a lovely day and the children can sometimes be a touch on the feral side when out in restaurants, so we opt for an outside table on the street. We ordered pancakes and cooked breakfast and something called custard french toast. Having ordered it and eaten some of it I’m still not sure what it is..! The rest of the food was nice but came out in a really random order and ages apart. However, the setting was lovely, it was close to home plus pancakes so the kids were happy…we’ll definitely be visiting again.
So far I really like being in the French Concession. Very good vibes.