Snow day from the Round Tower

We had proper snow in Copenhagen last week for the first time in years. I decided to enjoy the view from the top of the Round Tower and was lucky enough to have it myself for a while. I was also delighted that the Observatory was open too.img_7616 img_7617 img_7621 img_7623 img_7624 img_7627 img_7629 img_7634

It’s the winter break so I’ll be back next week – enjoy the week if you are off work and school.

Anemone Teatret – family theatre

At the weekend my son and I went along, at the invitation of one of his class friends, to see a play at the Anemone Theatre called Frøken Ignora eksploderer. My Danish is up at this kind of entertainment but my son has quite limited Danish language skills at present. I was curious as to how much he would enjoy it. He was rapt all the way through, refusing my whispered offers to explain what was going on. It is only fifty minutes long so perfect for children. It runs until the beginning of November so it may be something to consider for  the autumn holidays as there are still tickets available. Don’t be put off if your child doesn’t understand much Danish as the play is very visual and fun (that said it is a bit bizarre so understanding the Danish still didn’t help me really get the whole thing).screen-shot-2016-10-10-at-17-05-36

The Anemone Theatre has been around for a long time, funnily enough I mentioned it to someone today who recalled going when they were a child when visiting relatives in Copenhagen decades ago. Like my son she didn’t understand much Danish at the time yet still enjoyed the performance she saw. They have an interesting programme of productions aimed at different ages of children so well worth keeping your eye out for other future performances.

Address: Suhmsgade 4, 1125 København K

Website and ticket sales

 

Kalaset – a little Swedish corner {from the archives}

We don’t often spend a lot of time in the centre of the city unless we are a mission to do something, for example visit a museum, or go shopping but this week we’ve had guests from the States and spent a little more time in the city than usual. Cue exposure to tourists en masse but that’s another post altogether! Last week a couple of girls stopped me at the bus stop on Østerbrogade and asked me the best way to get to a cafe called Kalaset. I hadn’t heard of it but Google had so I was able to help. After a visit to the Workers’ Museum on Tuesday my husband said he had Googled local places and this place sounded good and it was Kalaset again! So fate said we had to go there.DSC01020DSC01009

It is exactly my kind of place. A bit quirky, a bit gritty, very cluttered and a lot mismatched. Plus the menu was amazing. I am getting a little tired of the generic brunch menu offered in a lot of places, even when it is well executed so the Vegan Brunch I chose was a refreshing change. Falafels, hummus, tapenade and a mouthwatering Moroccan inspired warm lentil salad were the stars on the plate. My son forsook his pancakes to share my plate of food, it was that good.DSC01014

Kalaset, Swedish for party,  has been here for around eight years and calls itself a little Swedish corner of Copenhagen.  The little touches such as all the old radios mounted on the walls, the bare brickwork, which despite seeing this a lot, I still love. The cafe was cosy and sunlit, but you still got the feeling it would be very warm and inviting in the winter too. I definitely felt this was somewhere I would be returning to, and soon.DSC01011 It is open late and becomes a lively bar in the evenings with a happy hour between 10pm and midnight (at time of writing) and I can imagine it is a noisy, hot and fun place to be.DSC01012 DSC01017

Homemade jams and Nutella – perfect!DSC01018

 

Address: Vendersgade 16, 1363 Copenhagen

Website

{Originally posted July 9 2015}

New sparkly building on Axeltorv

There is such a lot of construction going on in the city at the moment and suddenly buildings seem to be taking shape beyond just being a building site. Axeltorv 2 is one of these. It seems that there was a big pit in this location for a long time and now you can see the new towers on the site from well outside the city. My thoughts on the number of high buildings now springing up in the city are for another time.

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The location of the new construction on Axeltorv seems to have been a long time coming, the demolition of the Scala building formerly on the site began in 2012. This location has a chequered history and is seems somewhat jinxed. The original Scala was a theatre built in 1864 and between 1912 and 1927 was the location for popular revue theatre productions. It was closed in 1930 and renovated but never regained any real popularity and finally closed in 1957. The original building (above in 1882) was demolished and replaced by a department store which was reopened in the 1980s as a shopping mall with entertainments such as a cinema and casino. By the time we moved here in 2008, this had been closed for a year due to lack of success and another demolition was on the cards. I find this history quite fascinating – that a large venue in such as prime spot opposite Tivoli could keep failing so spectacularly.

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There were many proposals for the new building on the site and in 2016 the new Axeltorv 2 from architects, Lundgaard & Tranberg, will be inaugurated. A couple of the towers appear to be very near basic external completion with the addition of shiny facades . The plans are for five independent towers of varying heights, each connected by skywalks with an open public area or urban garden around the base of the towers. The entire complex will sit separate from surrounding buildings so it can be reached from all sides. The architects say the design is reminiscent of the old city ramparts and will be very environmentally friendly.

The complex will house businesses and the ground and first floors will contain ‘high end’ (I quote the architects) shops and restaurants and there are plans for a sky bar or restaurant on the 10th floor of the highest tower. This complex is part of a wider development of this area with Tivoli Hjørnet (Tivoli Corner) coming in 2017.

Halloween in Tivoli

We always have a visit to Tivoli during their Halloween opening and this year was no exception. We made sure we chose a sunny day last week and had a lovely afternoon wandering around. It is always worth sticking around until it gets dark for the real Halloween experience. The Halloween season ends on the 1st November so there is still time to enjoy some pumpkin fun this week.DSC01335 (1) DSC01343 IMG_2391

DSC01356 DSC01354DSC01363See our previous Halloween visits to Tivoli in 2014 and 2013.

August B – some theatre with your coffee

Over the summer we discovered a lovely little hidden gem of a cafe that had been right under our noses for some time. I regularly catch the 1A bus from Kongens Nytorv from outside the Royal Danish Theatre but I had never notice the little door on the side facing Magasin leading to August B. This cafe/coffee shop is located in the lobby area of the theatre and is used as the bar during performances.

It is a wonderful place with perfect little theatrical and ballet related paraphernalia all around, it is almost like a little museum. It is named after August Bournonville, who is one of the pillars of the Danish ballet tradition and was ballet master at the Royal Theatre from 1830 to 1877.IMG_1508

I just adore this stack of well-worn pastel pink ballet shoes and of course the flamboyant costumes. It had a peaceful yet vibrant feel to the place and there are lots of lovely little spots to enjoy a coffee or cake, whilst soaking up the theatrical atmosphere.IMG_1509

Where possible the food and drink is organic, sustainably sourced and Fairtrade. My iced coffee was perfect and I have been back a few more times since. It is a great alternative to some of the busier coffee shops in this area. And I love discovering all the little treasures on display.IMG_1513 IMG_1514 IMG_1515

Address: Kongens Nytorv 9, 1017 Copenhagen

Website

Hansens Mejeri

As a child I loved full fat Jersey milk and I have happy memories of buying fresh milk from local farms, still warm. Hansens, the well-known and traditional  ice cream company here in Denmark has opened a dairy shop close to the centre on the city where they take regular delivery of farm fresh Jersey milk, which you can take home in old style glass milk bottles.DSC00858

The tiny shop also sells Hansens ice cream and yoghurt made from the fresh milk and the milkshakes are probably the best I have tasted in a long time – but not very good for the waist line!DSC00859

If you follow them Facebook you can keep abreast of new milk deliveries in the store (usually a Wednesday). They are also on Instagram and post some mouth-watering images.DSC00860 DSC00861Address: Store Kongensgade 93, 1264 København K

 

The modern mystery of Borgergade

The area in centre of Copenhagen known as Frederikstaden is one of the most historic sections of the city characterised by Nyboder, Amalienborg and Marmorkirken yet just one street away is probably the most modern selection of buildings in the whole of Indre By along Borgergade. I walked down this street for the first time a few weeks ago on my way to the new Sticks & Sushi there and the anomaly was so immediate that I felt it needed further investigation. How was an entire street so completely modern? What had happened to what should have been a street full of historic buildings? I know that Copenhagen had minimal damage during the Second World War but I couldn’t think if any obvious reason.DSC00754 My friend Wikipedia stepped in. This street had indeed been part of city planning back in 1649 and had been mainly inhabited by tradesmen and shopkeepers whilst the streets closer to the harbour were for more affluent people. Despite the fact the street was largely untouched by the great fires of 1728 and 1795, their impact was felt as the housing became crowded due to the number of displaced people in the city. It became one of the most crowded slums in the city and a hot bed of crime and vice. By the 1940s the area was part of the largest condemnation projects in the city and was cleared. By the 1950s many modern buildings took the place of the original architecture.IMG_0423The new buildings were not simply thrown up to fill a space. Despite their very modern appearance, the apartment blocks above, known as Dronninggården, were built between 1943 and 1958 and a fine example of Nordic Functionalism and were designed by notable architects such as Kay Fisker and CF Møller.DSC00756A street with a fascinating history.

 

 

Sweet Sneak at The Dome of Visions

The Dome of Visions was originally located close to the Danish Architecture Centre in 2013 as a temporary structure and then moved to Århus for a period of time. Since last year it has been located in a permanent position next to the Black Diamond and is an open venue. Its website says “The Dome will be used for concerts, readings, debates about architecture, business seminars, exhibitions and even “camps” in which students and the city’s creative lights meet for days to immerse themselves in the new challenges of architecture.” With all the new architecture and develops along the inner harbour, it is an interesting addition to include the community in this space.DSC00807 On Monday we went along to the Sweet Sneak pop up bakery there and it was a great chance to experience The Dome (and eat some delicious cakes). It was cosy with great views across the harbour, it was a shame that the sky wasn’t blue but maybe next time. DSC00828DSC00809 DSC00812 DSC00814 It was deceptively spacious and warm. They heat it slightly in the winter and use windows at the top to cool it in the summer months. The air was scented with the plants growing inside the dome and the Fat Boys and mellow music made it all very cosy.DSC00816 DSC00818 DSC00819 DSC00823 DSC00827To find out what is on there, check out their events page on their website and also on Facebook. And to find out more about the next Sweet Sneak pop up follow the girls on Facebook and Instagram.

Views from the tower at Christiansborg

Ever since the tower at Christiansborg (or Borgen) has been open to the public, its been on my list of places to visit. I tried a few months ago but the lift was broken and I didn’t fancy the stairs. I think it is great that it is free to go up and the queues for the security check are not too long. You take the first lift to the restaurant level, a short one floor lift and then a short and wide spiral staircase to the top so very easy to access with kids.IMG_0545Last week my mum was visiting and we decided to brave the weather (what is up with these cold ‘Spring’ temperatures?) and  check out the views from the top.

It was fascinating seeing the city from another direction as I usually go up the Round Tower. The views were spectacular, we spotted the Turning Torso in Sweden very easily, and on an even clearer day you would be able to see far beyond Malmö into Sweden. I will definitely be going up again once the weather is clearer.DSCN3953IMG_0500 IMG_0501 IMG_0502

DSC00806We then finished the afternoon off at the Royal Stables, which are also well worth a visit. IMG_0533The whole area around Christiansborg, known as Slotsholmen, is fascinating with a number of museums including Thorvaldsens Museum and many others.