Tag Archives: danish

Favorite Cities Travel

24 hours in: Copenhagen

Copenhagen, Denmark – On my first visit to Copenhagen I flew in to Kastrup airport late on a hot, still night early one September.  As we made a banking turn to come in for our landing, I stared down on the still, dark Baltic waters crisply reflecting the city lights. The city exuded calm and hospitality.

That welcoming feeling stayed with me during the short taxi ride to my hotel as my driver chatted with me in perfect English, asking me if I’d visited before and helpfully suggesting the best places to see during my short visit. We all know about the typical ‘helpful’ cabby whose suggestions tend to steer businesses to places that help supplement his income, my driver had a passion for painting and sculpture and gave me a list of gallery exhibitions and a quick critique of the art on hand at each in such rapid fire delivery that I thought Copenhagen taxi licensing involved an art history course rather than The Knowledge. The answer to the mystery was much simpler, though: my driver worked part time at the Royal Danish Academy as a researcher.

Despite the fact that my hotel was down the street from the wonderful Galerie Asbæk, my visit would likely be too brief to allow time to attend any openings. In a lovely old building just  few minutes’ walk from the wonderful pedestrian Strøget, the Phoenix Hotel was the perfect place for me to settle in for the night.  The staff was efficient yet welcoming and I was quickly checked in and brought to my corner suite on the 3rd floor.  The rooms were spacious, comfortable, and decorated in a style that successfully balanced French indulgence with Nordic asceticism.

Having settled in my room and done a quick prep for the following day’s meetings, I strolled down the Bredgade to  the Kongens Nytorv in search of a late night meal. Turning east, I walked along Nyhavn toward the harbor front amidst the buzz of cafe society enjoying the balmy end of summer.

I gave up on finding a table outside despite the late hour and ducked into Fisken Pub to sit at the bar, enjoy a bit of fish and a glass of some delightfully light Danish beer (the name of which I have been trying to recover ever since), and admire through the open window the lovely sloops tied up along the quay.

Despite having spent most of the next day in meetings at Dell’s EMEA headquarters just south of the city not far from the airport, I had plenty of time before my flight so I had the taxi drop me off at Tivoli Gardens where I spent only 20 minutes or so before walking back to my hotel wandering through side streets, visiting shops and galleries along the Strøget.

Though such a short trip in many cities would have left me feeling rushed and frazzled, in Copenhagen I never lost that sense of calm and welcome.


The Phoenix Hotel
Bredgade 37
Copenhagen 1260
tel: +45 3395 9500

Fiskens Pub
Nyhavn 27
Copenhagen 1051