Lots of New Year enjoyment close to home

Zhu Shenshen
With the pandemic under control but a number of new local cases causing concern, the demand for local entertainment has boosted as travel may not be an option.
Zhu Shenshen

Editor’s note:

Last year, the novel coronavirus outbreak upended the annual Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations. Although China has been successful in bringing the pandemic under control, recent outbreaks of new locally transmitted cases across the country have raised alarm bells for public safety ahead of the start of the Year of the Ox on February 12. This series explores how Spring Festival is shaping up in Shanghai.

Lots of New Year enjoyment close to home

Children engrossed in activities during their visit to the teamLab museum with new interactive ocean themes.

Destinations close to home are expected to become popular in Shanghai during the coming Year of the Ox, after recent outbreaks of new locally transmitted cases.

Airbnb hosts like recommending unique and lesser-known attractions and shops, bringing economic benefits and employment to local communities. In China, 90 percent of the businesses recommended by hosts are locally owned and 79 percent of guests interviewed visited places recommended by their hosts, Airbnb said in a report.

About 82 percent of China’s Airbnb hosts have another job and 90 percent have university degrees. They mainly come from the arts, entertainment, recreation, technology, Internet and real estate industries, and have a “deep love for life and the local community,” according to Airbnb.

People in Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu and Shenzhen will stay in these cities instead of returning to their hometowns this year. They have boosted the demand for local entertainment and accommodation, said another sharing accommodation brand Tujia.

“Airbnb can create a sense of belonging for travelers, and generate greater social and economic value for the local community,” said Chris Zhang, head of Airbnb China Supply.

Shanghai’s museums have launched new projects and exhibitions to attract visitors. New technology including augmented and virtual reality, laser light displays and 3D printing is expected to attract visitors, especially families with children.

For the new year, teamLab Borderless Shanghai in Huangpu District has brought a new Sketch Ocean display, which allows visitors to draw fish and see their pictures coming to life and “swim” out into the ocean in front of them.

It’s a world of “light and shadow” with existing halls with illuminated fish and ocean, hanging lanterns, waterfalls, flowers and birds. Visitors and children can interact with the show when they walk close by or draw and touch the fish. It’s a “dreamland and utopia” created by light, said teamLab’s tech partner Epson, which has 470 industrial laser projectors in the show.

After the local COVID-19 cases were reported, teamLab Shanghai announced reduced opening hours and a lower maximum capacity at the museum.

A Yungang Grottoes art show is being held at the Powerlong Museum in Minhang District until March. It uses high-tech in restoration art.

The highlights include virtual shows by ancient dancers and musicians, using the images and characters in the grottoes which have existed for more than a thousand years. Meanwhile, there is an actual size grotto in the museum, created through 3D printing technology.

Lots of New Year enjoyment close to home

Visitors can interact with the fish on display at the teamLab museum.


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