After a long week of work, Carrie and I were excited to get out and have a relaxing night away. We decided to check out Xintiandi, a car-free shopping, eating, and entertainment district in the French Concession. It's made up of restored traditional shikumen ("stone gate") houses on narrow alleys, some adjoining houses which now serve as book stores, cafes and restaurants, and shopping malls. Xintiandi means "New Heaven and Earth" and is considered one of the first "lifestyle centers" in China. Our night included: an iced coffee at the most popular Starbucks in Shanghai; a free drink at a bar/club that was way too cool, and too incredibly awkward for us to ever visit again (we were way under-dressed and were there so early in the night that there were at least five employees for each customer - about ten to welcome and escort us in and then another thirty or so inside the club, standing alertly in each section, making us nervous - it felt like a bad kung fu movie); a wonderful stroll around the neighborhood, the shops, the dreamy back alleys; and, finally, a glass of Vietnamese wine with a delicious mango/vegetable spring roll that was truly delicious. Check out the pictures here: http://hsinchina.shutterfly.com/1233.