Villa's and Houses in Shanghai often mean the same thing - a large residential building detached from similar properties.
Most of these can be found in the popular family friendly suburbs of Shanghai:
Almost all have 24 hour security and a clubhouse with swimming pools and gym facilities. Most houses are very comfortable, and often very large but with fairly small gardens. It is common for maids to have their own rooms in the house, and to have large exapnsive basements (often converted to study areas or games rooms). These villas can range from mimicking grand European style homes, to modernist blocks with all the latest gadgets built in.
There are usually multiple bathrooms, each with heated floors and walk in wardrobes.
When choosing your compound, it is highly likely that you will base this choice on your children's schooling in Shanghai.