Hmmm, maybe "ghetto" isn't the right word for that. Another G-word then. It's on the tip of my tongue. Gentrifi-something. What do you call it when a "Danish designer furniture brand" moves into a neighborhood that could have just a few years earlier been considered like a Buddies-slash-barbershop ground zero? (Affectionately, of course.)
I digress. The shop is actually located in an old bank and is three times bigger than Hay's first shop on Taikang Lu. With the size comes selection, which is why you might want to make the special trip to this one. Not many retail shops around here, making Hay quite conspicuous on the street, although in like company among the new bougey restaurants and cafes in the area. A unique feature of this Jing'an branch is the Minimarket, which appeared at K11 and Design Republic as a pop-up shop, and seems like an interesting project Hay's been running worldwide.
There are three shelves in the Minimarket, each has stationaries, cookwares, and bathroom accessories from Hay and other retailers sorted by colors. Their stationaries are from German, Danish, and Japanese brands like Mobius & Ruppert and MT, price range from 19rmb for a pencil and 69rmb for a brass pencil sharpener. Ideal for your classier crafty impulses.
The shelves they use to display all the products is from a series called New Order, designed by German designer Stefan Diez. It's a shelving system in slim but stable aluminum which allows you to assemble different pieces together. The new Wrong for Hay lighting collection is there as well.
Of course, they have plenty of sofas, chairs, and rug options, just like the Taikang store. The joining aesthetic is sleek and self-worthy minimalism, as if the pieces themselves had been the subject of many a profound and edifying TED Talk at some point in their run to the showroom floor. If you are on that noble hunt for stylish yet minimal furniture, home accessories, and stationaries, and wouldn't bat a eyelash at dropping a few thousand kuai to attain them -- i.e. over 100rmb for a glass or 469rmb for a cushion -- Hay is a pretty cool place to stop by.
For the rest of us, it's a great location to press one's face up again the glass, moan quietly and drool over some finely designed Danish furniture, and ponder the cruel karmic circumstances of our modern lives.