Perched on Peblinge Sø, one of Copenhagen’s man-made lakes, Hotel Kong Arthur and its sister hotel, Ibsens Hotel, are hidden away within the walls of an 1882 apprentices’ residence, on the edge of the hip Nørrebro neighborhood. From the outside, it looks like any other historic building in Copenhagen, hidden down a cobblestoned alley, but walk through the doors and you’ll discover a whole world inside. In honor of the hotel’s medieval-inspired name, a full suit of armor greets guests upon arrival, and shields flank the roaring fireplace in the lobby, but the historic comparisons stop there. Each room is individually designed in modern Danish style—minimalist, light, welcoming, with all the modern gadgets and a look worthy of a design magazine. With its highly acclaimed spa, three restaurants, private courtyard, conference rooms, and even an afternoon happy hour for guests, Hotel Kong Arthur is an oasis in and of itself—if only it weren’t so well situated to tempt guests out to explore the city.
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Sandwiched between trendy Nørrebro and lively Nansengade, overlooking Peblinge Sø Lake, Hotel Kong Arthur has one of the best locations in Copenhagen, in a cool and slightly less trafficked area, with the major sights in walking distance. Torvehallerne’s extensive indoor food markets are just around the corner; try Hallernes Smørrebrød. Cross over the lake and into Nørrebro for dinner at Relae, one of René Redzepi’s favorite restaurants; be sure to budget in some extra time to explore the charming street of Jægersborggade, home to shops like Keramiker, whose ceramic dishes you’ll want to take home. Warm up on a chilly evening over a pint or a cocktail at The Barking Dog, a cozy downstairs bar located just across the lake.
Need to Know
Rooms: 155 rooms, 11 suites, 10 spa rooms, one penthouse apartment. From $140. Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: 11 a.m. Dining options: In addition to an extensive buffet breakfast served each morning, the hotel has three restaurants, each with its own flavor and atmosphere. The elegant La Rocca restaurant serves classic Italian cuisine in a white-tableclothed dining room that opens onto the breezy courtyard in warmer months. The more relaxed—but no less gourmet—Pintxos offers a range of traditional Spanish fare, from tapas and pintxos to paella and, naturally, Spanish wine. Local Copenhagen favorite Sticks’n’Sushi also has an outpost here, serving fresh seafood and Japanese cuisine for both lunch and dinner. The hotel also has a cozy, 24-hour lobby bar, where guests can curl up by the fireplace with a glass of wine at any hour. Spa and gym details: Hotel Kong Arthur’s Asian-inspired Ni’mat Spa is its crowning jewel, Copenhagen’s largest and longest-running spa, and one that offers a truly decadent experience for both locals and guests. All room bookings include access for one day to the spa facilities, including a Jacuzzi, sauna, steam room, and spa courtyard; bookings for spa treatments should be made in advance, as Ni’mat tends to book up early. The hotel also has a small gym, as well as bicycles available for rent.
Who's it best for: Couples and friends who like to be pampered, and business travelers. Our favorite rooms: Opened in 2014, the Spa Floor consists of 10 Asian-inflected rooms specially designed for a relaxing experience with calming scents, warm colors, and soothing music. All of these rooms include special discounts on treatments at Ni’mat Spa, as well as free access to the spa at all times, and the Spa Executive rooms each have a private hot tub. Top-floor gallery: ApArt, the hotel’s penthouse apartment, can be rented for stays, events, or meetings—but it’s also an art gallery, and hotel guests are always invited to openings and other events held there.