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Grazia Escapes To... Copenhagen

© Martin Heiberg / Copenhagen Media Center

Where to stay, what to do, and most importantly, what to eat while in the Scandi capital of cool

Where to stay

© Nobis Copenhagen

For convenience and style, you just can’t beat the Nobis Hotel, which is located a handy 5-minute walk from Copenhagen Central Station (a mere 15-minute journey from the airport), plus attractions like Tivoli, Christiansborg Palace and the National Museum. Its former life as Royal Danish Academy of Music (built 1903) is evident in the high-ceilings, marble staircases and chandeliers, although architectural firm Wingårdhs hasn’t been afraid of adding some more contemporary flourishes, too, notably the lounge area’s modern armchairs, fun light installations and bookcases stocked with coffee table books and trinkets (including a teddy bear and a nutcracker, naturally), as well as the imposing concrete reception desk. Bedrooms are compact but stylish, with four-post beds and grey marble bathrooms, plus toiletries by Byredo (we might have done a Ross from Friends and taken some extra…) while the mini-bar and room service options are definitely tempting (hello, half-bottle of white wine). Breakfast is served in the beautifully modern and very Scandi restaurant downstairs, with buffet and a la carte options, but honestly the grab-and-go selection is so good, with chia seed pudding, sugared grapefruit and avocado dressed with almonds and watercress, that you won’t need to order anything else.

What to do

© Martin Heiberg / Copenhagen Media Center

In all honesty, you could spend the weekend in Copenhagen eating, drinking and shopping and still have an unforgettable time, but there are plenty of cultural attractions to tick off, too. First up, orient yourself with a boat ride through the city’s canals, where you’ll take in all the important sites - from the former stock exchange to the Queen’s stables, plus modern architectural wonders like the Opera House and the Royal Danish Theatre. Hello Sailor offers an intimate cruise with an open bar, which is exactly how we like to get our sea legs. A trip to Christiania - the hippie freetown community established by fed-up students in 1971 - is a must-do, if only to experience the infamous ‘Pusher Street’. Tivoli Gardens - the Instagram-friendly amusement park, is also worth an evening trip, while the Carsberg Experience is a great excuse to drink lager. A good way to take it all in is with the Copenhagen card (available for 24, 48 and 72 hours), which gets you complimentary access to all of this plus free transport too.

Where to eat

© Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen / Copenhagen Media Center

Copenhagen has a reputation for being a the foodie capital of Scandinavia, and with good reason. After all, there are 15 Michelin-starred restaurants here, some of which require bookings months in advance (something we discovered to our chagrin). For a Michelin-esque experience, we would recommend heading to Host or Covoco, which both offer tasting menus at reasonable-for-Copenhagen prices. A four-course banquet - with plenty of amuse-bouche and chef-surprises thrown in - will set you back approximately £50 at the former, and if you ask really nicely, your waiter will throw in an extra basket of bread free of charge… Fine dining aside, other eateries to check out include Skaal, where you can try Denmark’s famous ‘open sandwiches’ or Smorrebrod and wash it down with a craft IPA, and Mother, a hip sourdough pizzeria that had more than a few locals chowing down beside us (always a good sign).

Where to drink

© Rasmus Malmstrøm & Camilla Stephan / Copenhagen Media Center

Danes are famous for their beer, but there’s far more to the national beverage than Carlsberg and Tuborg (although these are good places for beginners to start). Craft breweries are a krone-a-dozen, but we can heartily recommend War Pigs, a biker-style bunker with outdoor seating and dirty burgers, located in the uber trendy Meat Packing district (Kødbyen); Mikeller, famed for its cutesy silhouette branding and Insta-appeal; and Brus, which also boasts the city’s youngest Michelin-starred chef, Christian Gadient. If cocktails are your poison of choice, then you’d be hard-pressed to find a cooler bar than Ruby, which is behind an unmarked door at 10 Nybrogade. Reminiscent of a shabby-chic London members’ club, its ramshackle rooms are all decked out in mismatched (albeit luxe) furniture, with velvet curtains giving it a distinctly ‘after dark’ feel. A word of warning: cocktails are moreish, the prices aren’t cheap and the barmen are very bad influences.

Mr and Mrs Smith offers room rates from £236 including tax at the Nobis Hotel Copenhagen, with a selection of sweets in your room and free bike hire daily.