Shanghai has seen laser tag decks built in bars (thanks to X Club
) and even golfing bars (thanks to the now closed Urban 18) before. However, a concept that combines all three has not yet been dared, until now. Cue Big E, which opens in Pudong this month calling itself ‘China’s first themed entertainment centre’. Co-created by Eric Oetting, a partner at popular Jinxian Lu Belgian bar De Refter
, Big E is located right outside Dongchang Lu metro station, one stop east of Lujiazui (follow signs from Exit 3).
At 2,000sqm Big E’s laser tag arena, Encounterz, outsizes the competition with its Alien-inspired cargo deck – which it’s rumoured will be the set for a national TV show this month.
But given the noted absence of mini (or crazy) golf in this city, we’re extra excited about the Atlantis Adventure section. Big E has ‘recreated’ the legendary drowned city in glow-in-the-dark paint. Yes, the nine-hole course is as dark as the seabed itself – though light enough to make out trippy 3D renderings of shipwrecks, boiling lava, Poseidon battling giant sea serpents and ‘waves of destruction as the city falls into the sea to be lost forever'.
Founders Oetting and partners Jing Yi Ning and Gao Yang drew inspiration from their own love of themed entertainment. Their hope is to bring another totally fresh experience to the PRC.
By Charlotte Middlehurst