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Life hubs wishing you a multi-media Christmas
By Jiang Xinhua

CHRISTMAS is coming and the city is getting into the festive spirit. It seems that everywhere you go at the moment you're confronted by Christmas trees festooned with decorations and fairy lights, Santa Claus and his cute reindeer friends, and of course, gifts, often wrapped in seasonal red and green.

But as well as traditional favorites there are plenty of high-tech treats on offer, guaranteed to create a Christmas with a difference, complete with amazing visual and audio effects.

Here are some city life hubs - shopping, dining and entertainment complexes - where you can enjoy a dazzling fun time this Christmas with family and friends. And what could be better at this time for sharing, giving and loving.

Life Hub @ Jinqiao

For those seeking an illuminating experience at Christmas, look no further than the 6-meter-tall tree complete with fabulous visual and audio effects at Jinqiao Life Hub in the Pudong New Area.

When visitors walk close to the tree, sensors trigger abstract animations, such as gifts wrapped in blue and purple, Santa hats and Christmas socks in green and red. In addition, visitors are invited to yell out their Christmas wishes, causing the tree to light up in a dazzling interactive display.

Other festive features include reindeer made from eco-friendly materials. These include one leaping a gate, symbolizing the Chinese saying that a carp can jump over a dragon's gate. According to legend, if a carp can leap a dragon's gate at the top of a waterfall it is transformed into a dragon. Therefore, the image symbolizes courage, perseverance and accomplishment, particularly in studies or a career.

Adding to the seasonal spirit, the hub's Garden Square is decorated with silver and red lights, and Christmas songs and carols play in the background. Parents sometimes dress their children in Santa outfits and take pictures of them next to the Christmas tree.

Date: Through December 25

Address: 3611 Zhangyang Road

Life Hub @ Anting

Since late November, Anting Life Hub has been transformed into Starry Park, a place where, thanks to multimedia technology, childhood dreams can come true.

Childhood games and activities such as swings, a seesaw and building blocks and even arm wrestling are rendered in 3D on LED screens by Feng Jiangzhou, an avant-garde artist, making the shopping complex a Christmas wonderland.

Feng said that he has combined modern technology with art to create a future amusement park for kids and evoke happy childhood memories among grown-ups.

Children are always dreaming about getting presents from Santa Claus at Christmas. But what about taking on the jolly old fellow at arm wrestling? A handle linked up to an LED screen let you do just that, feeling Santa's strength, accompanied by lifelike visual effects and sound.

Wearing a pair of 3D glasses on a seesaw, you will feel as though you are in zero gravity floating in space. Sitting on a swing surrounded by LED screens, it will seem as though you are on a celestial journey, surrounded by an array of stars and stunning sounds.

And when you walk near a big Christmas tree, a large interactive screen on the ground will make you feel as though you are surrounded by presents and other surprises.

Date: Through December 25

Address: 1055 Moyu Road S.

Life Hub @ Daning

Daning Life Hub in Zhabei District is presenting a Christmas themed music park, featuring a huge music box and "a glass dreaming factory."

Taking the theme of "Daning's Song of Christmas Joy," is a giant music box decorated with fairy tale characters. Visitors can turn the music box handle, transforming the plaza into an enchanted forest glade of fairy tales and music.

Continuing the musical theme, karaoke singing contests will take place between December 15 and 30. Visitors can also try their hand at a skiing adventure and making pottery snowmen.

The Daning Life Hub will also host live performances by Taiwanese singer Tank and rockers Zina Punx on Christmas Eve and New Year's countdown parties.

And if all this festive fun leaves you a little peckish, there's a special Christmas set by Four Points by Sheraton Shanghai especially for those looking for a bite of Christmas cheer.

Date: Through December 30

Address: 1878-2008 Gonghexin Road

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