Review: Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li


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The multi-award-winning, five-star Capella Shanghai allows guests to return to the golden era of Shanghai during the 1930s. It is this old-world glamor that sets this hotel apart from the rest of the sleek, modern hotels in this futuristic city.

Concealed by the Xuhui District’s high-rises are Shanghai’s last remaining Shikumen townhouses, a cluster of which have been converted into 55 elegant one- to three-bedroom villas set on one of the few remaining Shikumen lanes. It is these unique properties that make up Capella Shanghai.


Located within the cultural preservation zone of the Xuhui District, Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li is the only all-villa urban resort in the city.

The nearest metro station is Zhaojiabang metro station which is 0.6 km from the hotel and links to Line 7 and 9. The hotel is 2.8 km from Xintiandi, 2.5 km from the Shanghai bund, a one hour drive from Shanghai Pudong International Airport but is only 30 minutes drive from Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport.

In the immediate vicinity you will find boutique restaurants, stylish shops and cocktail lounges, all of which are walkable from the hotel.

Style & Character

Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li, offers an urban sanctuary nestled in the Xuhui District’s last remaining cluster of shikumen townhouses. With only a few of the original shikumen lanes remaining, Capella Shanghai is proud to protect and evolve the city’s cultural legacy.

The design concept, created by Jaya Design International, embodies the spirit of Jian Ye Li – reflected in the fusion of French and Chinese elements, a nod to its heritage and the golden era during the 1930s.


At the heart of this urban sanctuary are the one, two and three-bedroom Shikumen Villas, which blend historical Shanghainese courtyard living with Parisian design flair. The huge marble bathrooms feature Acqua di Parma toiletries. You will find similar toiletries at Four Seasons Milan and Hotel Hermitage in Monte Carlo.

Originally built during the 1930s, the shikumen villas housed middle-upper class traders and expatriates working in Shanghai. In 1945, the area was transformed into a residential area for local Shanghainese and became a hive of activity around the narrow lanes. The contemporary elegance of the villa’s newly designed interiors contrast with Chinoiserie accents, an expression of heritage and modern indulgence. Villas feature garden courtyards and rooftop terraces, giving them a unique and green outide space.

Service & Facilities

The award-winning Auriga spa at Jian Ye Li is a world class health and wellness centre as well as a place for ultimate luxury indulgence in Shanghai. The spa features seven treatment suites, herbal baths, vitality pool, sauna, steam room, wellness studio, fitness centre with Hypoxi machine and floatation pods for a restorative sensory experience.

Food & Drink

Through the use of the finest ingredients and innate gastronomic creativity, three-Michelin star chef Pierre Gagnaire has spent five decades transforming simplicity into a symphony of flavour. His iconic name and reputation anchor the dining experience at Capella Shanghai.

Pierre Gagnaire’s expressive culinary legacy is at the heart of their famed French restaurant, Gagnaire’s first and only in Mainland China. Chef Gagnaire curates menus that focuses on quality, local ingredients and the reinterpretation of traditional French cooking. Le Comptoir’s interiors are based on a Parisian salon and inspired by the old-world glamour of Shanghai during the 1930s.

La Boulangerie delivers a little taste of France with the charm of a local bakery, through delicious snacks and pastries available all day. La Terrace has been inspired by the secret courtyards and hidden gems of Provence, and offers a relaxed atmosphere to enjoy champagne, whiskies and digestifs. Finally, Le Bar serves cocktails crafted with a mix of local seasonal ingredients, premium spirits and a dash of French flair.


It is hard to find a really unique hotel in Shanghai as most of this metropolis is uber modern. Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li embraces its history and offers green outdoor spaces in this busy modern city. There is no hotel quite like this one and if you are looking for unique, historic luxury in Shanghai, this hotel should be your first choice.

Note: Benefits & upgrades subject to availability. Benefits offered correct at the time of writing. Terms & conditions apply. Enquire for more information. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.