Nimb Hotel, Copenhagen review: where opulence meets Danish hygge

Historic boutique remains the grande dame of Copenhagen’s Tivoli Gardens

The Nimb Hotel building was first opened in 1909
The Nimb Hotel building was first opened in 1909

At night, the Nimb Hotel’s grand Moorish façade, complete with onion domes and minarets, is lit up by colourful lights, accentuating the fairytale look of its unique architecture. It’s an enchanting Instagram-worthy scene, as if the building is dressed in a thousand glowing gems, bringing to life the history of this hotel originally inspired by the colours and character of a Middle Eastern bazaar.

World famous for its outer opulence and inner elegance, the Nimb remains the grande dame of Copenhagen’s Tivoli Gardens. Home to one of the world’s oldest amusement gardens, Tivoli Gardens is said to have influenced Walt Disney when he was planning Disneyland in California. Like the park, the building was created by Tivoli director and architect Knud Arne Petersen and the hotel has been located there since 1909.

Unlike some historic hotels that have fallen into hard times at one period or another, the Nimb has maintained its standard of excellence throughout the decades. In 2008, the hotel underwent its first extensive renovation. Its exterior was restored to in Italian marble stucco, while inside, fresh décor championed Danish design and its connection to comfortable Scandi living or “hygge”. Autumn 2017 marked another big milestone with the opening of a new 2,000 sqm wing conceived by New York-based architects Pei Cobb Freed & Partners expanding the hotel from 17 to 38 luxurious rooms and suites.

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A junior suite

A junior suite

Having only made use of this new space for just over a year before the pandemic hit and forced the hotel to close, the Nimb is enjoying something of a second unveiling as it welcomes guests to discover a host of updates including 20 new luxury suites, plus a sprawling roof terrace with heated pool decorated with Italian mosaic tiles, surrounded by sun loungers and serviced by a beach-style cocktail bar.

On the lower ground floor, dark lacquered walls are matched by a beautiful water feature the size of a small pool equipped with a decorative antique canoe and surrounded by exotic flowers. Here you’ll discover a small gym with state-of-the-art Technogym machines (also used in the UK’s Warner Bros. Studios by stunt actors no less!) and a wellness area, for massages, a steam or the full haman experience.

The Nimb's rooftop pool with sweeping views of Copenhagen

The Nimb’s rooftop pool with sweeping views of Copenhagen

The rooms

All rooms have a view of Tivoli, so you can people watch during the day and see the gardens magically sparkle when the sun goes down – luckily, any screams emanating from rollercoasters and other adrenaline-rush rides are barely perceptible. Unsurprisingly, the suites are the Nimb’s pièces de résistance, many with their own balcony and fireplace. All rooms riff off a contemporary Nordic style that feels at once luxurious and comfortable, and benefit from a well-informed curatorial touch in the form of handpicked 17th-to-19th century antiques from China and the Far East. The palette is sumptuous with velveteen textures and bright coloured fabrics bringing warmth to the neutral tones of larger furniture pieces. The whitest part of the room is the bespoke canopy bed, dressed in rich handwoven Egyptian cotton from exclusive Danish textile company, Geismars.

In terms of tech and finer flourishes, no expense has been spared: all 38 rooms boast Bang & Olufsen televisions and sound systems, large build-in wardrobes and working desks. Spacious bathrooms have both showers and bathtubs, as well as double sinks. If you want the ultimate soak though, ask for the executive suite, which has a huge state-of-the-art bathtub that looks like one of Anish Kapoor’s hollowed out sculptures. Apparently, this is where Kate Moss likes to stay.

Junior balcony suite

Junior balcony suite

What sets it apart

As is the case with all five-star establishments – although this is officially considered a boutique hotel – the devil’s in the detail. For a start, the service is exemplary with no guest query considered too complicated. We asked for information on Copenhagen’s best gaming stores (four were recommended, all off the beaten track) along with a recommendation for a special teatime treat – this so happened to be Cakenhagen, the Nimb’s very own luxury patisserie in the Tivoli Gardens, a haven of dinky macaroons and artistic confectionery.

The concierge will also happily arrange city tours, personal shopping, limousines, private yoga classes and a free pass to a larger fitness centre should you want more space to work up an appetite. As a nice aside, the Nimb uses renewable energy supplied by the wind farm at Avedøre Holme, off the coast of Copenhagen.

A selection from Cakenhagen

A colourful selection from Cakenhagen

Eating and drinking

The Nimb has a total of five restaurants and two bars – one poolside, the other, a more sophisticated affair, is on the first floor. Situated in the hotel’s former ballroom, the latter is a step back in time, embellished with an enormous glass chandelier and six-foot fireplace. The space has a fresh contemporary feel thanks large figurative murals by artist Cathrine Raben Davidsen who has a Danish knighthood (otherwise known as the Order of the Dannebrog).

Eating is a Nordic-inspired art form with as much locally-sourced produce as possible catering to all tastes thanks to a variety of kitchens. For easy eats there’s Fru Nimb which specialises in the most patrician of open sandwiches. Think artfully placed dill over succulent gravlax on a bed of fan-sliced avocado.

Open sandwiches take on new meaning at Fru Nimb

Open sandwiches take on new meaning at Fru Nimb

Gemyse, situated in the park itself but run by the hotel, is an inventive vegetarian restaurant which pushes the boundaries of greens and root vegetables. On the menu at the time of writing: king trumpet mushrooms with garlic and preserved asparagus along with corn with crispy polenta and Karamelsten, which is a delicious local caramelised cheese.

The Nimb Brasserie located in the original wing of the hotel specialises in French favourites including excellent steak frites, but there’s a nod to Nordic traditions here too. If in season, try the juicy and completely sustainable Vilsund blue mussels from a mussel aquafarm in the inlet in Limfjorden, North Jutland, apparently the only one in the world to be certified by MSC, which recognises and rewards sustainable fishing. The Nimb Brasserie is also the breakfast area. Occasionally it doubles as a function space for a star-studded soiree: 2022’s Tour de France winner, the Danish cyclist Jonas Vingegaard, celebrated his triumph at the brasserie with his friends and family, as well as around 20,000 proud Danes waving from the Tivoli lawns.

A double deluxe bedroom

A double deluxe bedroom

What to do

What’s not to do in Copenhagen?! Hire a bike – a cool vintage-looking Velorbis one from the hotel – and make like the locals. If you have children, you’ll want to make full use of your free pass to the Tivoli Gardens with its many rollercoasters, old fashioned arcade games, shops, cafes and aperitif spots. The garden also runs a full programme of events every summer, encompassing everything from fish feeding at the park’s bijou aquarium to jazz concerts on the main stage. Ballet performances – some world premieres – take place at the historic open-air Pantomime Theatre (Pantomimeteateret) . Erected in 1874 in an ornate Chinese-style, it is Tivoli’s oldest building and counts Queen Margrethe II of Denmark as its in-house set and costume designer.

Top tip

Book a stay well in advance. Deluxe and standard rooms are especially sought-after, sometimes up to three months ahead of arrival.

The Nimb, Bernstorffsgade 5, 1577 København, Copenhagen, Denmark. Rooms start at £340 per night;

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