A ceramic spa in the centre of Copenhagen
Maria Giulia Zunino
Known as the grand dame of hotels, the Hotel d’Angleterre in Copenhagen was mentioned by the Vogue guide even when closed for restoration, while the New York Times recommends lovers of luxury spend at least one night here.
Solid and majestic in its Nordic neoclassicism, it stands on Kongens Nytorv (King’s New Square) in the city centre, close to the Royal Theatre. A symbol of both tradition and excess, it was here that the first draft of the Danish constitution granting power to the king was unveiled. And over the years it has opened its doors to royalty, politicians, actors and rock stars, as well as generals and nobles fleeing from the war.
Now, after being closed for three years of renovation work, it has finally reopened and although its halls, dining rooms and suites appear unchanged, the chandeliers, Art Nouveau picture frames and fireplaces have all been restored. Its style remains that of 1755, the year when two young lovers, Jean Marchal, a court servant, and Maria Coppy, daughter of the royal chef, opened a restaurant and started up the hotel, establishing its rules of hospitality. Partly rebuilt in the mid nineteenth century after a fire, it has now been completely modernised in terms of technology and comfort and revamped with modern works of art (guests are greeted by a portrait of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark painted by Andy Warhol) and a host of contemporary features.
It offers luxury accommodation in its 90 rooms (29 suites including the 250 square metre Royal Suite, complete with a large balcony and antique fireplace), exquisite meals in its array of restaurants (the one on the roof is dedicated to Jean Marchal) and specialty cocktails in the champagne bar. It hosts business meetings in sumptuous settings, but above all it offers all the services that have become an integral part of modern-day hospitality, especially in a 5-star hotel.
However, the real showpiece of the project is the new spa, designed by architects Signe Bindslev Henriksen and Peter Bundgaard Rützou. After founding the practice Space Architecture and Design in 2005, they have always worked with high-end clients and have built up a firm reputation for their ability to combine contemporary solutions with historic settings.
The hammam, the first indoor pool in Copenhagen (10 x 15 m), the fully-equipped gym, the sauna and the five large beauty treatment booths reveal a minimalist Scandinavian design, underscoring the hotel’s choice of offering typically Nordic treatments and using only local organic products. This equates with a dominant use of straight lines (with the sole exception of the curved steps of the swimming pool), an abundance of wood, and soft lighting. To introduce natural appeal into a contemporary urban setting, the floors and walls feature grey and white coloured tiles from Casa Dolce Casa’s Pietre Mediterranee collection. The waterproof, non-slip tiles are highly functional but at the same time deliver the warmth, sophistication and simplicity for which Italian products are renowned.
grey and white