Copenhagen is a city with design in it's DNA. Few cities boast such a consistent cool factor from the fringes to the very centre, here's how to get to know this cutting-edge creative hub in just one day.
From the moment you touch down on Danish soil you'll be aware of two things. First of all the sheer simplicity and logic that goes into making things function as intended, and secondly, the sheer beauty of the country's inhabitants. Back to the first point for now, as your plane approaches the gate you may as well order your Uber because you'll be through arrivals before you can say 'hej!'.
Your first port of call will be Granola. A small but perfectly formed café that sits right next to charming in the dictionary and has just the right amount of energy to kick you into gear. Fuel up on a traditional Danish breakfast (jam, ham & eggs - a terrifying combination for first-timers but you'll learn to love it) and soak up the old-time French vibe with a coffee in your hand.
When it comes to shopping, there's no time like the present. Hot-foot it over to Storm where you'll find one of the most carefully curated fashion selections in Europe. Expect to fall in love every five seconds while browsing through rarified goods from brands like Celiné, Thom Browne and Off-White. Aside from upgrading your wardrobe, use this as an opportunity to enhance your literary collection or spruce up your bathroom cabinet. Theoretically this would be a great place to buy gifts, but buying for one's self means instant gratification. Now where are those Mykita sunglasses?
You may have arrived with hand luggage but if The Apartment has anything to do with it, you're likely to leave with a shipping container. Other side-effects induced by this exquisite interior showroom include an incessant desire to move in, and an envious dissatisfaction with your own home. Take time to marvel at the ornate wallpapers, pore over the Moroccan rugs and bathe in the glow of the Murano glass lights. It's probably best to drop your significant other a text warning of the impending shipment.
There's a special place in all of our hearts for sleek Swedish powerhouse Acne Studios. No doubt you've kicked yourself more than once for passing up on that shirt or those striped suit trousers? Alas, the answer to your problems lies in Elmegade in the form of the Acne Archive. Home to samples, previous seasons and the occasional wild-card. Enjoy.
This is a real curio and a very memorable shop. Inge Vincents is a ceramic artist who crafts paper-thin bowls, vases and an array of other fancies entirely by hand, meaning that each stark white creation is as unique as it is beautiful. Use this store as an opportunity to level-up your crockery but just be darn careful when carrying it home.
Ugh, all this self-indulgence is making you hungry, no? The petite Atelier September is a treat for both the eyes and tastebuds. Grab an open sandwich and a bowl (yes, bowl) of coffee and recharge your batteries.
Okay, okay this may be strictly a tourist spot but it may well be the chicest tourist attraction you can visit. Saunter your way up the white-washed spiral tower and you'll be greeted with 360' views of the city, all with barely a stair to climb. Insider tip: smuggle a foldable bike to the top for an exhilarating exit (might possibly be frowned upon).
Remember what your grandmother told you? First impressions are everything. D'Angleterre sits proudly above Kongens Nytorv, the awe-inspiring 18th century building that practically oozes elegance and sees a steady stream of handsome individuals coming and going. The hotel really is a city landmark but takes the title in its stride effortlessly, providing bountiful luxury and attentive service while still leaving room to breathe. After you've checked in and made yourself at home (no doubt you've chosen the d'Angleterre Suite, you clever old fox) be sure to drift on down to the spa where you'll be rewarded suitably.
Whether you live under a rock or not, you'll know that dining is a big deal in Copenhagen. Home to some of the best chefs the world over, you are truly spoilt for choice. When it comes to mixing the business of great food with the pleasure of a strong drink, Umami is an obvious answer. Japanese dining with a distinctly European twist set in straight-up Scandinavian surroundings. Trust us, you'll be happy here. Opt for the veal tenderloin with wasabi truffle sauce and wash it down with one, two or three sake libations. The night is but young.
Copenhagen nights seem to tick by verrrry slowly which to your benefit, means more time to throw back expertly mixed drinks. Your bar of choice is housed in a historic 18th century building and spans three floors, the highest of which is home to an intimate whisky bar and the lowest being a cosy hub complete with Helmut Newton prints and a roaring fire. The middle bar is where you want to grab your cocktails but truth be told, the outdoor courtyard is where it's all going on.
The definition of a nightclub. Show up before 12:00 and you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd got the wrong address (if it wasn't for the look-at-me neon sign) but show up a little later and you'll be met with a queue of supermodels and cool cats. You did of course have the brains to book onto the guestlist in advance to save any red-faced moments and as a result you'll have an all access pass to a truly great party. With drinks flowing, ladyboys voguing and a killer soundtrack, it's the place to see and be seen. You're only here for the night, right?
Your head has a certain way of being upset with you for the very decisions it made the night before. Relieve your self-inflicted aches with a hearty breakfast and if you've got time (make time) return to the spa for some more rest and recuperation.
Words by Louis Sheridan
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