To get an idea on what it’s like to live in Shanghai, we went condo shopping. We tour a couple of apartments in the development where our friends who took us out to Tang Dynasty lives. The development, located in Pudong, is made up of thirty 26 floor buildings. That’s only phase 1. There are five other phases just as big as the first.
The development is pretty much a self contain community (or city). It’s gated off, with security check at the entrance and a massive four floor common area building that would be mistaken for a community center anywhere else. The development is set up so you don’t ever have to leave home (except to buy food). There are parks, swimming pools, playgrounds, spa, tennis courts, etc. There’s even a golf driving range.
For the price, the condos are not at the same level as what I can get back home. Features that Sarah and I would want, like a gourmet kitchen and big master bath, are not on the most wanted list of most Asian buyers. It wasn’t until I moved up to the $3 million unit that I saw something that look like a real master bath.
The average Chinese worker wouldn’t be able to live in a development like this. Unless they’re members of the new elite working class, it’s simply too expensive. Sixty percent of the residents are expats.