Old Shanghai is a new place for hanging out with family and friends in Jakarta. In short, it is a group of restaurants and food stalls selling food and drinks in one place. But, unlike others, Old Shanghai has a theme, a pre1950s era in one of the largest cities in China. Hence, the name.
The location of Old Shanghai is in the new housing complex of Sedayu City in West Cakung, North Jakarta. It is easily accessible through Kelapa Gading, the ever-popular residential area in Jakarta. Up until now, parking in Old Shanghai is still free. Even if the parking lot is packed, you will not have a problem finding space in the nearby area or on the roadside. It is because the surrounding area is still developing and not crowded yet.
From a distance, Old Shanghai looks like a traditional Chinese village or fortress. Walls of restaurants surround the whole area, except for the three entrance gates. The main gate is the Emperor Fortress gate, where you can directly see the immense statue of the Sea Goddess Mazu (Tian Shang Sheng Mu) in front of the pagoda. Then, there are two much smaller entrances: the Tiger and Phoenix gates on each side of the site.
Some people visit Old Shanghai in Sedayu City because of its looks. A great place for selfies. Murals depicting Chinese legends and myths adorn many walls. There are sculptures and stone tables in the Empress garden. Colorful lanterns and decorative umbrellas hanging on strings across the courtyard. The most outstanding feature in Old Shanghai is a magnificent pagoda in the middle of a lotus pond. Stained glasses cover the walls of this pagoda. Whenever the sunlight shines on it, the glasses beautifully glimmer. At night, the lights illuminate the pagoda like a beacon. A golden dragon adorns each corner of the roof. Inside is a Croco by Monsieur Spoon, a hype French bakery-cafe based in Bali.
A labyrinth created by two layers of restaurants and shops surrounds the pagoda. Several alleys connect these layers. They all look like traditional Chinese buildings. Since these shops are small, most of the restaurants here do not have seating arrangements inside the restaurant. Tables are communal in front of the shops and in the Empress Garden. There is also a communal indoor seating called the Jade Palace. Hence, if you come in a group, everyone can order their own preferences and eat together, unrestricted by where you buy the meal or drink.
On the other hand, there are several big restaurants where you can order a table and eat inside. One is Croco inside the pagoda. Others are Shu Guo Yin Xiang, Ponggol Nasi Lemak, Mutiara Restaurant, and Xiao La Guo.
Since the theme is Old Shanghai, many menus here are Chinese pork dishes. The most popular ones are pork ribs soup, pork satay, and pork char siu (barbecue pork), either in a rice set or as a topping in noodle dishes. However, not all food here is Chinese food. You will find Nasi Pedas Kampung Bali nestles in the rows of eateries. Don't worry if you do not eat pork. Plenty of food stalls sell halal food (dishes without pork and lard). Various desserts and drinks are also available. So far, there are more than eighty shops selling food, drinks, and knick-knacks in Old Shanghai Sedayu City, Jakarta. So, you definitely will find your food of choice.
Please note that all of the payments in Old Shanghai are cashless. They use QRIS (Quick Response Code Indonesian Standard is a digital payment by scanning a QR code). Hence, to make a payment, you must have accounts in one of the digital platforms, such as OVO, Go-Pay, or mobile banking from an Indonesian bank. For example, BCA mobile, BRImo by BRI, Livin’ by Mandiri, and ONe Mobile by OCBC NISP. You also can pay using Flazz, a prepaid card from BCA.
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