I am in Beijing now. It is a holiday this week in China so I decided to just fly up to Beijing. The hotel in Shanghai was a little expensive and I decided I am too old now to stay in dormitory rooms.
I plan to stay here for at least the next couple of months, despite the cool weather and I put a deposit on an apartment today. After about 6 months of living in bungalows, bamboo huts, cheap hotels, sometimes smelly hotels and hostels with shared bathrooms it will be nice to unpack my bag.
The apartment is one bedroom with a kitchen and living room. It is about US$500 a month. I know you can get cheaper rooms, but it is harder to negotiate if you are only staying a short time. The building is pretty new and it is fully furnished and includes internet access. It is about a 15 minute walk from a subway station and a short bike ride from central Beijing.