Ever since I watched the movie Empire of the Sun in the 80's featuring a young Christian Bale (who looks as intense as then as he does today) residing in 1930's Shanghai, I have wanted to visit the city. I love the cinematography and envisioned a bustling metropolis filled with inspiring European and Chinese architecture.
I was not disappointed.....
The joy of travel is the surprise!
We wanted to have tea at the legendary Peninsula on our last day. The hotel does not accept reservations and when we arrived at the lobby, we were told that there were 15 other people on the wait list and the place was packed. We were ravenous and could not wait, so we ended up walking down a few blocks to the Jasmine Lounge of the Fairmont Peace Hotel, where they had afternoon tea and ballroom dancing with dance instructors and a live band. The lounge was a more intimate setting and we spent over 3 hours entranced with our art deco surroundings eating elegant tea sandwiches and the most scrumptious scones.
I don't usually dance, but I could not pass up the chance to do the waltz at such a magical venue. I also got incredibly sentimental, teared up when they played "Moon River" (one of my Dad's favorite songs) and felt incredibly happy and lucky to be there at that moment.
A perfect meal to end our trip. I later found out that a scene of Empire of the Sun was filmed at the hotel.