Copenhagen is a city of youthful energy and international spirit that make it a perfect destination for a luxury weekend getaway. Here you will find luxury hotels, world-class dining featuring wildly creative New Nordic cuisine, excellent shopping, stately palaces and churches, and colorful neighborhoods that remain much the same as when Hans Christian Anderson lived almost two centuries ago. After a weekend in Copenhagen, you will understand why the city is regularly listed as one of the world’s happiest places to live.
For this luxury weekend getaway, we recommend the Hotel d’Angleterre, a luxurious neoclassical palace dating from the 18th century. Completely renovated in 2003, the hotel blends old-school white-glove glamor with sophisticated, contemporary touches. The 92 rooms, including 60 suites, feature high ceilings, intricate moldings and original sconces, and are stylishly decorated in a modern palette of cool grays and silvers with touches of plum. Head concierge Anders Ruggiero and his staff work are excellent and can arrange just about anything (including, on occasion, getting a nearly impossible reservation at Noma). In the basement you will find one of the best spas in the city, including an excellent fitness area and enormous pool. For this weekend, we recommend the stunning d’Angleterre suites (particularly the suites located on the top floor of the hotel), which offer panoramic views of the city from multiple terraces, over 1,000 square feet (50 sq meters) of living space, heavenly Duxiana beds and luxurious marble bathrooms.
Hotel d’Angleterre // Kongens Nytorv 34 // website
For lunch today, take a short trip to Amass Restaurant, an industrial-looking restaurant helmed by chef Matt Orlando, the former head chef Noma and a veteran of Per Se and Le Bernardin in New York. Located in a repurposed shipyard building, the restaurant décor is airy and industrial-looking with graffiti painted on the cement walls and enormous windows looking out to the garden and the harbor. Chef Orlando, who is originally from California, offers very creative organic tasting menus draw from whatever is growing in the restaurant’s garden. Some of the extremely creative dishes from a recent visit included White Asparagus with Chamomile and Lobster Oil, Turbot with Oyster Mushrooms and, for dessert, Rhubarb with Angelica and Spent Grain Ice Cream (odd sounding, but delicious).
Amass Restaurant // Refshalevej 153 // website
Since many of the city’s historical sites are located by the waterfront and along the beautiful canals, taking a boat tour is one of the best ways to get a feel for Copenhagen. Skip the large tour boats and opt instead for a private charter with Hey Capitan. You will depart from the pier next to the Royal Danish Playhouse and pass by the famous Opera House and the Royal Palace on your way to Trekroner Sea Fortress, which used as the main fortification of the city. After exploring the fortress, you will pass by the famous Little Mermaid Statute, which was based on the fairy tale by H.C. Anderson, the Royal Danish Navy base, the Royal Yacht and many charming house boats. You will then explore the historic canals of the old city center, passing the beautiful Circle Bridge and ending the tour near the Black Diamond - the Royal Library.
Hey Captain // væsthusbroen 1 // website
For a luxurious start to the evening, have a pre-dinner cocktail or glass of champagne at Balthazar Champagne Bar, a chic champagne bar located in the rear of the d’Angleterre hotel.
For food lovers, Noma is certainly one of the most famous restaurants in the world, having been named as the world’s best restaurant for four years. Originally opened in 2003 by Claus Meyer and Rene Redzepi, Noma launched the New Nordic food movement and was instrumental in turning Copenhagen into a foodie Mecca, with alumni now running many of Copenhagen’s top kitchens, including Amass, Relae, and Geranium. In 2017, Redzepi closed the restaurant for a “gap” year to take his restaurant on the road and, in early 2018, reopened in a new location. It nearly impossible to get a reservation at Noma -- they open their books three times per year and the season sells out in a matter of minutes. If you are lucky enough to get a reservation (if you miss the window, the concierge at the d’Angleterre may still be able to help), you will likely experience one of the most memorable meals of your lifetime.
Noma // Refshalevej 96 // website
If you are unable to secure a reservation at Noma, you will not be disappointed with Copenhagen’s many other exceptional restaurants. For tonight, we recommend Relæ, a small fabulous Michelin starred restaurant located in the upcoming area of Jaegersborgade. The restaurant is owned and run by Christian Puglisi who was the former sous chef at Noma. While the décor and vibe are both rustic, with bare tables and an open kitchen, Puglisi’s new Nordic cuisine is creative and sophisticated. You will also find the wine list leans to biodynamic wines. Some of the standout dishes from a recent 7-course dinner included Trout & Wild Strawberries, Hindsholm Pork & Spring Greens and Rhubarb & Anise Hyssop.
Restaurant Relæ // Jægersborggade 41 // website
Rather than dressing for breakfast in the hotel lobby, arrange for breakfast on your room’s terrace. There is no better way to start the day than indulging a decadent breakfast spread on your own private terrace overlooking the city.
Copenhagen is a biking city – everyone seems to get around on bikes (rain or shine) and bike lanes line nearly every road. For this morning, we suggest arranging a private bike tour through your hotel. On your bike tour, you may visit Nyhavn, the picturesque harbor lined with old colorful townhouses, the Copenhagen Opera house, with its vast canopy roof, the changing of the guard at Amalienborg Palace, Veserbro, former red-light district transformed into a hip neighborhood filled with trendy bars and clothing stores, the fairytale-like Rosenborg Castle, a Dutch Renaissance Style building constructed in the early 1600s, and the beautiful Kongens Have, or King’s Garden.
For lunch, we recommend stopping at Torvehallerne, Copenhagen’s famous food hall and market. We love the smørrebrod (Danish open face sandwiches) at Hallernes and tacos at Hija de Sanchez, which was opened by the pastry chef from Noma and known to be one of the best Mexican spots in Europe! We also love Coffee Collective and Summerbird Chocolates.
Torvehallerne // Frederiksborggade 21 // website
One of Copenhagen’s most interesting neighborhood is Nørrebro, once a rather seedy area and a now vibrant and hip neighborhood. We recommend booking a private guide from CHP Cool to show you this colorful area. One of the most famous sites in this neighborhood is the beautiful Assistens Cemetery, where Hans Christian Anderson and Soren Kierkegaard are buried.
CHP Cool // website
Along the way, stop at Andersen & Maillard for a coffee and their sticky-sweet kouignamanns (multi-layered cake). During the summer, order their sinfully delicious coffee soft serve ice cream made from fresh espresso grounds, reused steamed milk, and a little crisp made from sourdough bread.
Andersen & Maillard // Nørrebrogade 62
Make sure to visit Jægersborggade Street, where you will want to explore the many creative stores clustered in this area, including høj COPENHAGEN, known for Nordic jewelry, textiles and design objects, Keramiker Inge Vincent, known for paper-thin bowls, vases and other ceramics, and CMYK kld for cool Danish prints and illustrations. If you are hungry, stop by Meyers Bageri for a decadent kanelsnurrer (cinnamon roll) or have an afternoon glass of biodynamic wine at Manfred’s.
For dinner, we suggest Restaurant Kadeau, a Michelin-starred restaurant that serves dishes inspired by the cusine of Bornholm, a rugged island in the Baltic Sea. Head Chef's Nicolai Nørregaard and Rasmus Koefoed opened the restaurant in 2011 and source many of the restaurant’s ingredients and produce from Bornholm. The décor is simple chic with an open kitchen and simple wooden tables looking out to a pretty garden. Some recent stand-outs from the tasting menu included White Asparagus, Blackcurrant, Norway Spruce & Blue Mussels; King Crab, Tomato, Caramelized Cream & Sugar Kelp and Crème fraiche, Strawberries, Fermented Honey & Snaps.
Restaurant Kadeau // Wildersgade 10B // website
Finish the evening by visiting Tivoli Gardens, the world’s second oldest amusement park and Walt Disney’s inspiration for Disneyland. This family-oriented amusement park is filled with exotic architecture, historic buildings and lush gardens. The park is particularly magical at night, as thousands of colored lights create a fairy tale atmosphere.
Atelier September is a great option for a light Sunday morning breakfast. We love the Instagram-worthy light and airy space with its small mismatched tables and chairs and long a communal table. Be sure to try their trademark avocado on rye toast served on mismatched vintage plates and silverware.
Atelier September // Gothersgade 30 // website
One of Copenhagen’s biggest draws is its world-renowned design scene. Nor far from the d’Angleterre hotel and Atelier September is Strøget, the longest pedestrian shopping area in Europe. You can spend hours visiting shops along this street and the surrounding area. Be sure to visit Illums Bolighus, a large department store featuring the best of Scandinavian and international design, the main showroom of Georg Jensen, which houses the world’s largest collection of the company’s silver masterpieces, Royal Copenhagen, famous for its iconic blue porcelain brand, Hay, the innovative midcentury inspired cult design brand with a showroom laid out like an apartment, and Storm, a boutique that offers well known fashion labels and upcoming fashion designers.
For the remainder of the morning, explore the Danish Museum of Art and Design, which traces the evolution of Danish furniture design. Here you will find the country’s design aesthetics traced through the work of many famous Danish designers, including Arne Jacobsen and Kaae Klint.
Danish Museum of Art and Design // Bredgade 68 // website
For lunch, we highly recommend Restaurant Barr, a casual restaurant launched by a team of Noma alums in the former Noma space. The creative menu takes its inspiration from the countries that border the North Sea (what the owners call the European “beer-belt”) – Denmark, Norway, England, Belgium and Germany. Their home-brewed beers pair well with their creative takes on simple regional foods like Bone Marrow with Salted Gooseberries and Toasted Ryebread, Free-range Pork Schnitzel, and Belgian Waffles with Roe.
Restaurant Barr // Strandgade 93 // website
Spend the afternoon exploring Copenhagen on your own either on foot or by bike (you can borrow one the hotel’s bikes). When you need a break, make sure to visit Conditori La Glacé, the oldest and most famous pastry shop in Copenhagen, for their decadent Sports Cake, a mile-high cake made with layers of whipped cream, crushed nougat, a macaroon bottom and caramelized choux pastry.
Conditori La Glacé // Skoubogade 3// website
As an alternative for the afternoon, consider an out-of-town excursion to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebæk, a short 40-minute drive from downtown Copenhagen. This world-class museum contains a magnificent sculpture garden, several temporary exhibitions and a large collection of art dating from 1945, including pieces by Picasso, Giacometti and Louise Bourgeois.
We absolutely love Restaurant 108, a casual Noma sibling. Opened in mid-2016 by René Redzepi and former Relæ sous chef Kristian Baumann, the restaurant quickly became one of Copenhagen’s top restaurants. We love the simple, industrial-looking space with its concrete walls, giant globe lights with Edison bulbs and whimsical white birds hanging from double height ceilings. Head chef Kristian Baumann, who is considered one of Copenhagen’s top chefs, offers a short menu featuring new Nordic flavors with an international bent (including Korean, a nod to his heritage). Some of the highlights from a recent visit included Green Peas with Mushroom Cream, Raw White Asparagus marinated in fresh Almond Oil, Raw Grilled Lobster Tail with Herbs and Infusion and Quail with Beetroot Sauce infused with Herbs.
108 // Strandgade 108 // website
For help planning your luxury Copenhagen weekend, contact Jack Ezon at Artisanal Experiences, a boutique travel agency specializing in luxury travel experiences. Jack has been recognized as one of the Top 10 “Super Agents” in the world by Travel + Leisure Magazine and one of the top 25 Travel Agents by Travel Agent Magazine. Jack and his team can help you plan the perfect weekend getaway.
Artisanal Experiences // website