Stylish Denmark: Take a design tour of Copenhagen

London has its literary walks; Paris conjures up l'esprit d'art. And Copenhagen? Copenhagen breathes design, from the junk shops of Norrebro to the spanking new architecture of the harbour front. Wander aimlessly and you'll still end up on an impromptu design tour. But here are some tips to get you started.

Stay

There is no shortage of design hotels in Copenhagen. Even the youth hostel is kitted out with furniture from GUBI, the Danish suppliers to the Museum of Modern Art in New York (Danhostel Copenhagen City, HC Andersens Boulevard 50; 00 45 3311 8585; danhostel.dk/copenhagencity ; from 520DKr/£65 for a double). The look of the city's latest budget hotel, the CabInn Metro in Orestad, comes from the slanted mind of the architect Daniel Libeskind (Arne Jacobsens Alle 2; 00 45 3246 5700; www.cabinn.com ; from 615DKr/£75 for a twin).

At the other end of the luxe scale is the five-star Radisson Royal (Hammerichsgade 1 ; 00 45 3342 6000; radisson.com ; from around £170 for a double room). It's worth at least a peek inside: every detail was specified by Arne Jacobsen the the godfather of Danish design and creator of the Egg chair with the top-floor Alberto K restaurant and Room 606 maintained as unadulterated tributes to his "Danish Modern" vision.

An alternative for design aficionados is the Hotel Alexandra (HC Andersens Boulevard 8; 00 45 3374 4444; hotelalexandra.dk ; from 1,200DKr/£150 for a double), an unashamed homage to the nation's retro best, with a different designer room for every night of the week.

If you'd prefer a bit of extravagance to minimalist austerity then the lovingly refurbished, century-old Nimb (Bernstorffsgade 5; 00 45 8870 0000; nimb.dk ; doubles from 3,050DKr/£380) is a 13-room exotic hideaway straddling the Tivoli amusement park and downtown Copenhagen. With Moorish minarets meeting great timber floors, the redesign has seamlessly blended the real and surreal, the Danish and the Middle Eastern. Surprisingly, it all works.

Shop

Products from the likes of Georg Jensen, Normann Copenhagen and Illums Bolighus greet visitors at the airport and then never leave one's field of vision. Design addicts should spend time in Hay House (61 Ostergade; 00 45 9942 4440; dzoo.dk ), which is packed to its art-nouveau rafters with contemporary Danish furniture and trinkets. You'll find something a little different at Designer Zoo (137 Vesterbrogade; 00 45 3324 9493; dzoo.dk ), which has a broad selection of handicrafts from around the country, in addition to the work of eight in-house designers. Choose from vases, jewellery, side tables and textiles, all priced affordably.

More bargains are to be found in the second-hand shops along Ravnsborggade in Norrebro (eschew those styled as antique shops and head for the windows piled high with junk) and in the flea markets at Gammel Strand (Fridays and Saturdays through October), and Frederiksberg and Israels Plads (Saturdays through October).

See

Don't miss the Danish Design Centre (HC Andersens Boulevard 27-29; 00 45 3369 3369; ddc.dk; open 10am-5pm, Mon-Tue and Thurs-Fri; 10am-9pm Wednesdays; 11am-4pm Saturdays, Sundays and bank holidays; adults 50DKr/£6.20, students 25DKr/£3.10, under-12s free; free to all Wednesdays from 5-9pm). Designed by architect Henning Larsen – all glass on the outside and light wood within – the building is somehow both airy and intimate, and has a good bookshop and calm café. The permanent collection of 20th-century design icons is currently complemented by the "It's A Small World" exhibition, which explores the impact of global issues of sustainability, technology and consumption on the future of design.

Another must-see is Finn Juhl's House. Only open at weekends and on bank holidays, the home of the Danish design pioneer is a quiet joy; contact the Ordrupgaard museum to arrange a visit (Ordrupgaard, Vilvordevej 110, Charlottenlund; 00 45 3964 1183; ordrupgaard.dk ).

The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Sales and Office Administrator – Sports Media

    £23,000: Sauce Recruitment: A global leader in sports and entertainment is now...

    C++ Software Engineer - Hounslow, West London - C++ - to £60K +

    £40000 - £60000 per annum + Pension, Healthcare : Deerfoot IT Resources Limite...

    VB.NET and C# developer (VB.NET,C#,ASP.NET)

    £30000 - £45000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: VB.NET a...

    Visitor Experience volunteer

    Unpaid voluntary role: Old Royal Naval College: To assist the Visitor Experien...

    Day In a Page

    Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

    Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
    Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
    Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

    Pop-up hotels filling a niche

    Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
    Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

    Feather dust-up

    A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
    Boris Johnson's war on diesel

    Boris Johnson's war on diesel

    11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
    5 best waterproof cameras

    Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

    Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
    Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

    Louis van Gaal interview

    Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
    Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

    Will Gore: Outside Edge

    The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
    The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

    The air strikes were tragically real

    The children were playing in the street with toy guns
    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

    Britain as others see us

    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
    How did our legends really begin?

    How did our legends really begin?

    Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
    Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz