The concept at Dragonfly Spa is pretty cool, not to mention it's a great way to start off the evening. But it's winter, so I hate the taking off all the layers of leggings and whatever to do a massage. I stick to the easiest route- a foot rub.
The tiny Constellation No.1 at Xinle Road (新乐路) was an easy hop a few doors down. It's at 86 Xinle Road by the way, NOT 96 like what some websites listed. 96 is a boutique. Always a good quiet way to spend the evening. It's literally a hole in the wall bar, but I can't quite call it that because it's more atas than dingy. I would have been quite happy to stay there all night, except that it was only the first stop and I must join the crowd to bar-hop.
The downside to the bars is the smoking. Don't bother going there unless you're a smoker or you don't mind being a passive smoker. I've forgotten how annoying it can be. I'm not inclined to wear pretty dresses or carry expensive bags out because they'll be infused with the lingering stale smell of cigarettes and cigars. It's worse in winter when it wafts into all my wool and cashmere stuff! Grrrrrr. I've not used Febreeze anti-bactorial spray with such fervent frequency till I got to Shanghai!
There were only 2 choices of single malts at Dr Wine, either a Macallan 12y.o or a Talisker 10 y.o. So I junked whisky and followed suit to drink wine. We randomly picked an easy Chardonnay. I grinned at the irony of it all (private joke) when a member of the group ordered a bottle of Argentinian Malbec, and at RMB400. Now that the lunar new year holidays are over and everyone's back in town, this place is ridiculously crowded. A table is quite impossible to get unless you book it way in advance. 2 bottles of wine shared among 7 of us are quite enough for a starting point to the evening.
On our way home, I was still sober. Of course. How could I not be sober in this cold?! It's friggin' minus...something. It's not a good idea to hang around sidewalks in the open to puke one's guts out. Seeing the hot pot places all over with brightly lit neon signs offering late suppers for the nightbirds does induce a headache.