Sitting on the first floor in one of the wings of the Fairmont Peace Hotel in Shanghai, the Peace Gallery is not big but it is a place where you can find intriguing stories and precious collections of the time-honored hotel. The gallery possesses quite a lot of valuables, including the old silver ware, porcelain, art decoration, menus and key tags once used in the hotel, as well as photos, postcards, and anecdotes concerned with it. Some of them are collected by the hotel and the others are donated by people. Almost every item has a history attached to it.
An Old Menu
It’s a menu used by the Cathay Hotel (the predecessor of Peace Hotel) in 1948. An 83-year-old British man donated it to Peace Hotel when he came to Shanghai for Expo. During the Pacific War, he was imprisoned by Japanese in Room 600 of the hotel with his father who was a diplomatic envoy. He had very deep impressions on the hotel, thus he kept the menu, as well as his registration form as a captive.
When the vice Consul General of Argentina in Shanghai visited the Peace Gallery, he saw a logo of Cathay Hotel and assumed he had seen it at home. When he went back home, he really found a dish of Cathay Hotel with a special shape. Later he sent this kidney-shaped dish to Peace Hotel as a gift.
Two of the silver spoons, one is long and the other short, are donated by an old lady from Wuxi, who used to be the cloakroom attendant of Cathay Hotel. The spoons were awarded to her by the manager of the hotel for her excellent work. Other than the silver spoons, she also donated a cloth brush.
Hotel Key Tags
The gear-shaped key tags, once used by the Cathay Hotel, are collected by the Peace Hotel. There is an instruction under the room number which reminds the guest to leave the key tag to the receptionist but not in his pocket when he is out of his room (since it is not suitable to pocket the key tag with gear shape), showing the thoughtfulness of the Cathay Hotel.
Recording disc is another innovative idea of Cathay Hotel. If you had a banquet, birthday party or concert in the Cathay Hotel, you could record the sound in a disc and listen to it at any time with a Victrola at home. At that age, this is really something unique in Shanghai.
Address: Mezzanine in Fairmont Peace Hotel, No. 20 East Nanjing Road, Shanghai.
Opening Hours: 10:00am-07:00pm daily (free entry)