In Shanghai, they deep-fry glutinous rice and dip it in sugar. They have six different colors of taxi, three of which will rip you off. Shanghai is like Hong Kong, but extra. There’s extra architectural marvel, extra pirated designer goods and extra mainlanders walking around with T-shirts rolled up to their pits. It’s extremely awesome, and a total headspin to the unprepared slacker. Like me, you’ll spend your first six hours being ripped off, lost on the world’s most garishly lit road, and being uncomprehendingly stared at because it turned out you couldn't really wing it in Putonghua. Unless, that is, you peruse this five-point itinerary for a swindle-free, amusement-filled Shanghai weekend. Eat and eat \tand eat Like Hong Kong, one of Shanghai’s main selling points is excellent fine-dining restaurants. Unlike Hong Kong, these restaurants are disarmingly cheap. Our recommendations: Yong An 4/F, 600 Jiu Jiang Lu, 6351-5757 Food: Chinese gourmet. Dinner comes with traditional opera every Thu-Sat, if you're into that sort of thing. If not, the old Shanghai design is worth checking out – the owner restored the place from a massive 1918 house and some pieces, most notably a weighty wrought-iron gate, remain. Bill: USD$75 and up, per person. Sun by Aqua 2/F, 6 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu, near Fuzhou Lu, The Bund, 6339-2779 Food: Fine-dining Japanese at its best. Incidentally, you’ll find the best toro in Shanghai here. With minimalist concrete walls, private bed booths and rock pools, it’s all painfully stylish. There’s even an aquarium with bonsai sharks, which are apparently the new must-have wall hanging. Bill: USD$75 and up, per person. Franck 376 Wukang Lu, French Concession, 6437-6465 Food : Top-notch French bistro with a contemporary edge. It’s kind of casual, as much as white asparagus and veal tongue can be, and the wine list is exclusively French. Bill : USD$105 for two, with drinks. Haiku 288 Taojiang Lu, near Hengshan Lu, Xuhui, 6445-0021 Food: California-inspired, modern Japanese – very fresh sashimi, with traditional dishes that have a dash of playful innovation. There’s even a fried spicy tuna roll called a "moto-roll-ah." Har har. Bill: USD$30 per person, more with drinks. Dumpling, Be Mine Shanghai’s best xiao long bao Din Tai Feng South Block Xintiandi Mall, 2/F, 1 Lane 123 Xingye Lu, 6285-8378 This Taiwanese restaurant was on the New York Times’ world's best restaurants list back in ’93; the accolade was blown up several feet, cast in bronze and placed totally unobtrusively at the entrance to the restaurant. Surprisingly, the food is still terrific. There’s a branch in Hung Hom, but it's nowhere near as good. Bai Jia Can Shi 12, Lane 189 Wanping Lu, near Hengshan Lu, 6437-6915 Proper country style – big, meaty dumplings, plenty of oily carbs. Jia Jia Tang Bao 90 Huanghe Lu, near Fengyang Lu, 6327-6878 Great dumplings – thin skin, succulent meat and just the right amount of boiling hot soup. It's on one of Shanghai's foodie streets, Huanghe Lu. Go clubbing Did you know the Scratch Perverts are playing this Saturday? Clubbing in Shanghai is becoming a truly quality experience. Local Shanghai drum’n’bass crew Phreaktion are doing an amazing job of throwing d’n’b and other dance nights. There’s also the added bonus of the scene being hip in its underground non-mainstreamness, and thus, you can be hip by association. Our recommendations are below. For more info on Shanghai parties, check out www.smartshanghai.com . Bonbon 2/F, 1331 & 1229 Huaihai Zhong Lu, near Baoqing Lu, Luwan, 133-2193-9299 (mobile) Music: A franchise of British trance club Godskitchen, Bonbon is home to notorious USD$15 open bar nights, when it draws swarms of underagers. Despite a reputation for being excessively mainstream, they’ve hosted the likes of Sven Vath, Basement Jaxx, Daft Punk and Q-bert. Absolute House 20 Changlin Lu near Xietu Lu, www.absolutehouse.cn Music: Live bands and trance, house and electro DJs. Pirates 137 Xingfu Lu, near Fahuazhen Lu, Changning, 6283-2769 Music: Dub, dubstep, electroclash, drum’n’bass, and all the leftfield electronic stuff. It’s a bit away from the center of things, but remember, you’re in Shanghai – it’s a mere USD$2.50 cab ride. 4live 8-10 Jianguozhong Lu, near Sinan Lu, 137-7424-4008 Music: Live bands on Saturdays and cool electronica parties on Fridays; techno, underground hip-hop, etc. Check out the local architecture Many former foreign concession areas have been maintained, resulting in a beautiful collection of neoclassical and art deco buildings, particularly along the Bund and French Concession areas. Then everyone realized they could wedge revolving restaurants into tall buildings and make them look like spaceships and disco balls. Plenty of commercial buildings are brimming with quirky flourishes and playful architectural additions; it’s part of what characterizes the city. See and marvel at how people in the 40s might have imagined The Future. Speak loudly and forcefully If you don’t, people, especially cab drivers, will assume you don’t know what you’re doing and con you accordingly. Don’t worry about sounding angry; everyone talks like that. Bless them – it’s like they’re from Hong Kong, too. Note: the dialing code for Shanghai is 8621.