Miss AP’s Little Pink Book – Beijing
Beijing is not for the faint-hearted. But then, if you were a faint-hearted type, you wouldn’t be here in the first place, would you? A heady cocktail of hyper-gloss and faded glory prevails in China’s capital city. Home to 11.5 million souls, you really need to know where you’re going to get the most out of this sprawling, glittering, utterly seductive place.
Here are some of my hot spots…
The China Club
51 Xirongxian Hutong, Xidan
This is a 400-year-old palace originally built for Emperor Kangxi’s 24th son. And if it’s good enough for royalty, then more than likely it will keep me satisfied. The dark polished wooden floors make for a particularly fetching backdrop for a silk Lottus kimono, discarded wantonly after one too many martinis in the Long March bar.
Pussycat Dance Studios
3502 building #9 Jian Wai SOHO Chaoyang District
With all that dim sum on offer, a girl’s got to keep up her exercise routine, and what better way to do it than vertically, seductively, and swivelling around a long metal pole? This is the place to make the new friends and accomplices that will help you deviate your way through the Beijing nightlife.
The Grand Hyatt Pool
1 East Chang An Avenue
Shimmy into a Tricja for this – it’s the only swimsuit that could possibly rival the megawatt opulence of this gargantuan palm-fringed pool. Sip a Mai Tai to the sounds of birds chirping and enjoy the strong sensation that you have arrived.
B1/F, 1 Xindong Lu
There hundreds of great spas in Beijing and most of them don’t even require booking in advance. What really did it for me with this one was the entrance, which is a little bridge over a koi pond. That and the complimentary dumplings – who’d have thought that dumplings and foot massages would be such a heady combination? They really think of everything here.
Green T House
6 Gongti Xi Lu, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Eight-foot-high chair backs made of glistening lacquered wood; gently trickling water features; intricately carved wooden screens and vast rooms bathed in light: the Green T House just has to be experienced to be believed. Oh, and they call their desserts Naugh T – a naffness that is forgiven as soon as the unctuous white chocolate truffles hit your tongue.
L1-05, Park View Green, NO. 9, Dongdagiao Road, Chaoyang Disctrict
No point in wandering around a forbidden city without a few secrets of your own, now is there?