Denmark’s capital city, Copenhagen is eras away from the peaceful fishing hamlet it was till the 11th century, but it still carries with it the essence of its original avatar. Church spires and red-tiled gabled roofs stand alongside the neon-lit ultra chic architecture. Its location at the gateway of Scandinavia has made it an important centre for business, trade, media and culture.
The summer months of July and August, see early dawns and dusk that extends much past midnight. Long hours of sunlight and warm temperatures make this an ideal time for a visit. For those who are willing to brave sub-zero temperatures, winter brings a different charm to this lovely city.
H.C. Andersen wrote most of his stories when he lived in Copenhagen, and it is clear to see why. If you squint a little maybe you’ll spot the Little Mermaid’s tail disappearing into the crystal blue of the canal or see the Tin Soldier marching down the cobble-stoned street…within this bustling metropolis beats the soul of a fairy land.
A TREASURE TROVE OF ART
Hotel Fox is housed in a building like several others around the many corners of the Copenhagen streets. Shrug it off without a peek inside and you will have missed Denmark’s leading boutique hotel.
Twenty-one international artists from fields of graphic, urban art, illustration, etc were invited to participate in the re-designing of Hotel Fox. Each artist was provided his canvas: a room, and given one brief: let your imagination run riot. The artists took the brief to heart and voila, sixty-one rooms, each one a master creation of art.
So, while Benjamin Gudel brought with him Heidi and her grandfather and the Swiss Alps to Room 409, German Boris Hoppek designed Room 202 like a baby’s cradle complete with a crib-mobile hanging from the ceiling. Each room follows the colour palette of its theme be it the monochromatic shades of Room 107 that plays on the concept of light and dark or the green walls of Room 115 designed by MASA inspired from the views of the forests from his window back home.
This is one hotel where you probably will want to pack up after one night and move…to the next room, down the hall.
Big shops. Little shops. Clothes shops and shoe shops.
Shops that serve as food stops. Shops, shops and more shops.
Extending over 5 kilometres, Strøget is Europe’s longest shopping mall. Located in the middle of the city this pedestrian street is the address of all major international fashion brands, departmental stores and Danish boutiques. Strøget started off as a single pedestrian street in 1962, but over the last five decades it has engulfed many of the surrounding streets to turn into a maze of pedestrian streets…a maze that many a visitor is happy to lose himself in.
FUN, THE OLD-FASHIONED WAY
If you have any doubt about the fun-loving nature of the average Dane, all you need do is turn your footsteps in the direction of Tivoli Gardens. In 1843, when a walk in the park for most people was just that, Tivoli-the world’s second oldest amusement park was opened.
Over the years many additions have taken place and the park as it stands today is an eclectic mix of something old and something new. One of the oldest wooden roller coasters, world’s tallest carousel and some of the most modern amusement rides…the park has enough superlatives to be a must-see for most visitors.
Noma has ranked as the best restaurant in the world for the last two years, so it is only fitting that the artists behind its success get their due…Enter: Noma Food Lab. This is where the creative juices flow and take shape of the creations that are dished out in the restaurant below. The warehouse’s protective status meant that the design concept had to be executed without driving a single nail into the wall. Four multi-functional storage units, each made up of 500 wooden cubes take up most of the space. An herb garden, office space and staff areas have also been jigsawed in. Clutter-free, open layout and systematic planning make this one kitchen whose floors you could eat off.
Text By Himali Kothari