Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie

Li Fei
Wander around the historic film locations, find the cafes and small shops where love stories happened and be part of the sequel beyond the film.
Li Fei
Shot by Yan Jingyang. Edited by Yan Jingyang. Subtitles by Wang Xinzhou.

Shanghai's current hit movie "B for Busy," about the love lives of middle-aged locals and using the Shanghai dialect almost entirely, has become the talk of the town.

In addition to the love stories of Mr Bai, a 50-year-old Shanghai uncle who is the lead character in the movie's title, the Shanghai alleys, fruit shops, cafes, apartments and lifestyle featured in the film are familiar to local residents.

Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie
Ti Gong

A film still from hit movie "B for Busy"

Wandering around the historic area where Bai lives and finding the cafes and small shops where the love stories happen has become another sequel chapter beyond the film.

Some shops have retained their same appearance as in "B for Busy," but others have returned to their original look.

The small coffee shops, discount food stores and restaurants in the film, even the pastry Bai loves, stimulate in many local people the memory of "the same Shanghai life as mine."

It's fun to follow Bai to grab a cup of coffee in the city, or stand in queue to buy his favorite Shanghai snacks. I just did it, and I met a lot of "B for Busy" fans at these shops.

Laoshandong Fruit Shop

In the movie, Bai lived at 252 Wuyuan Road, and always bought food at a grocery store named Hong Fu near his home. The store specializes in discounted food nearing its expiry date.

The scene was actually shot in a fruit shop called Laoshandong, owned by a couple from the eastern Chinese province of Shandong. Located on Yanqing Road, it would take 15 minutes' walk to get to the shop from Bai's home.

It's a favorite fruit shop for nearby residents, but there's none of Bai's discounted food on sale in real life.

"Many people come here after watching the movie," the owner told me. "They are excited to take pictures of our store, and ask me to share the stories of filming."

Address: 23 Yanqing Rd

Opening hours: 8am-11pm

Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie

Laoshandong, a fruit shop on Yanqing Rd, appeared in the movie as a grocery store named Hong Fu specializing in discounted food nearing its expiry date.

Host Wine & Kitchen

In the movie, divorced for many years, Bai falls in love with Ms Li, a 44-year-old advertising worker. She is raising her daughter, Maya, on her own after divorce from a British husband.

Li lives on Yongkang Road, formerly known as Route Remi and not far from Bai's home. So Bai helped her to pick up Maya from the school bus, and took her to do homework at this cafe. At the same time, Bai's best friend, Mr Wu, always has a cup of coffee here and chats with Bai.

In real life, it's a restaurant featuring fusion cuisine. However, Maya's favorite Chocolate Lava Cake really is available on the menu.

Also, you can get an afternoon tea feed on the vintage green sofa where Maya sat, or just take a snapshot on the bench in front of the restaurant.

Address: 794 Julu Rd

Opening hours: 12pm-12am (Sunday to Thursday), 12pm-2am (Friday & Saturday)

Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie
Yan Jingyang / SHINE

Fiona Li in front of Host Wine & Kitchen

Mayfive Coffee

The cute white-window shop on Xinle Road has already become the most popular of the several cafe shops in the movie. It's where Bai's son worked and fell in love with his workmate.

The shop retains the impressive logo of the gesture "give me five" as it appeared in the movie and you can get the same snap as Bai's son.

In fact, the coffee shop is inside a clothes boutique and has no tables, but has some benches on the stairs.

The menu features special seasonal blends, such as coconut milk latte. A cup of Americano costs 28 yuan (US$4.4). It's "a little expensive, but worth a shot. It provided me the same taste in my mind as when I was watching the movie," a girl said to me when she arrived just after seeing the movie.

Address: 158-5 Xinle Rd

Opening hours: 10:30am-6:30pm

Mi Qing Pu Zi

Shanghainese love to buy traditional snacks from specific time-honored brands, no matter how far away or how long the queue and so did Bai. A pastry he bought for friends went viral after the film was released.

As Bai mentioned in the film, the pastry was bought on Tianyaoqiao Road. There are over 10 butterfly pastry shops on the road, and identifying which is the right one became a hot topic in town.

According to Shao Yihui, director of the movie, the snack is from Mi Qing Pu Zi (formerly known as Yang Qing He) on 166 Tianyaoqiao Road. The butterfly-shaped pastry it offers is much smaller than a traditional one, tastes crispy with a milky fragrance, and is less sweet than other brands.

"I could not wait to find the pastry when I saw the scene of them tasting it, so I searched for the shop right after the movie," a girl in the queue told me.

The store has now put a "B for Busy" poster on the wall and there's always a queue so it can be easily found. As a useful tip, there is a 10-yuan discount if you present a ticket for the film.

Address: 166 Tianyaoqiao Rd

Opening hours: 9am-9pm


The small juice shop is located at Gaolan Road, a quiet street not that well known but very close to the famous Huaihai Road.

There is no difference between the shop in real life and in the movie, including the logo, the decorations on the wall and even the menu.

It reminds me of the scene in the movie in which Bai ordered the Starry Blueberry and bought a coconut for Maya. His son's girlfriend was sharing her troubles while making the juice.

The signature drinks feature the shop's name, Bittersweet – shaking bitter tea together with a sweet fruit, such as matcha with mango (priced at 27 yuan). The Starry Blueberry (28 yuan) in the film is made of blueberry and oat milk, presenting a gradient blue color.

"I live in this community, and often buy juice here after school," a teenager told me at the shop. "I recognized it at first sight when watching the movie."

Address: No. 5, Lane 25, Gaolan Rd

Opening hours: 11am-5:30pm (Tuesday to Sunday)

Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie
Yan Jingyang / SHINE

Fiona Li displays a photo featuring a scene of the cafe where Bai's son worked.

Get 'B for Busy' and check out Shanghai shops made famous by popular movie

The Chocolate Lava Cake served in Host Wine & Kitchen.

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