The small, but chic, capital of Denmark holds a myriad of stylish surprises.
While politicians gather in the Bella Center for the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, this fairy-tale city is getting ready for what it does best – putting on a magical display of lights and events to welcome in the holiday season.
An often overlooked luxury destination the small, but chic, capital of Denmark hides a myriad of stylish surprises.
Centering your trip around Kongens Nytorv, the largest square in the city, puts you in the perfect location for sugarplum fairies and shopping for Fendis. Max Mara, Prada, Birger Christian and the flagship store of Georg Jensen silver are found on Strøget.
Strøget runs through the heart of central Copenhagen from Kongens Nytorv to Rådhuspladsen, where you’ll find the younger fashion stores like Zara. This is also home to Scandinavia’s largest department store, Magasin du Nord, good for all those last minute stocking fillers. If the weather turns inclement, close by is Det Ny Illumit, with six floors of designer shops, nine restaurants and a spectacular glass dome on the top floor.
Walking under the twinkling white lights and peering into shop windows depicting scenes of old-time Scandanavian life will inspire you to treat yourself to something traditional, and Royal Copenhagen’s showroom at Amagertorv, filled with beautiful porcelain, silver and crystal, is the place to acquire an essential heirloom Christmas plate. Try Bing & Grøndahl (the world’s oldest series of collectibles) or a Royal Copenhagen plate (1908). Another century-old tradition is the specially designed holiday dessert spoon and fork. For other, larger antiques, walk down Bredgade – which runs from Kastellet to Kongens Nytorv and enjoy the view of Queen Margrete’s Amalienborg castle.
The best place to stay for shopping and access to the best of Copenhagen’s dining is the Hotel D’Angleterre, located a stone’s throw from the Kongen Nyvert Metro stop. Four-times selected Denmark’s best luxury hotel at the World Travel Awards, D’Angleterre is located in a landmark 1755 building overlooking the majestic square and its picturesque ice rink. This is simply the best location to experience the pulse of Copenhagen. If you intend on making a lot of purchases, upgrade to one of the hotel’s luxury suites overlooking the square and have even more room to spread out and enjoy your stay. Their personal shoppers know the city inside out and can point you towards the finest local boutiques you might otherwise miss. Even if you are staying elsewhere, the restaurant’s cocktail bar is worth a stop – a tie is not required but you might feel underdressed without one.
Shopping is not the only pleasure to be had – enjoy traditional Danish oxtail and Skagerack lobster in Michelin-starred Kong Hans Kaelder, situated in a romantic wine cellar in the oldest building in Copenhagen, just four minutes away from d’Angleterre. If the crisp weather or your holiday heels make that cobblestoned walk sound a little daunting, venture just outside to Brasserie Ego, an intimate space for dining any time over the festive period.
Stay through New Year and enjoy the traditional New Year’s speech from Queen Margrethe, broadcast at 18:00, and then finish the night by enjoying the fireworks at Kongens Nytorv or City Hall Square. Bring your glogg along for warmth or if you stay at D’Angleterre just throw open the windows and listen to the crowds welcome in 2010 in traditional song.
Glædelig jul and Godt nytår!
Hotel D’Angleterre: www.dangleterre.com
Kong Hans Kaelder: www.konghans.dk