“A small, sleek hotel on a converted barge moored in trendy Christianshavn, with minimalist rooms and wonderful river views”
The most striking feature in each of the 12 identical rooms is the floor-to-ceiling window facing the river. Being separated from the water by nothing more than a thin sheet of glass is almost dizzying, but in a really good way. Smart shades roll up from the floor, but we left ours down and watched swans, kayaks and boats drift by from our super-comfy queensize bed. A tilt-in window and full-length door open to let in fresh air.
Another sheet of glass divides the bedroom from the simple ensuite bathroom - it's artfully frosted to provide some privacy, but the shower (no tub) remains visible, so it's best to know your travel companion well. Glass tiles and a glass bowl sink create an airy feel, and you get soap plus plenty of towels.
Polished wooden floors, warmed by radiant heat in winter, maintain the hotel's heritage as a boat, as do the portholes in the doors (these can be covered by magnetic circles if you want to hide yourself away from the outside world). A small desk with an Arne Jacobsen 'Ant' chair provides just enough space to work on a laptop - that is, if you can tear your eyes away from the hypnotic sparkle of the river. There’s a wardrobe with an array of hidden panels and drawers, so you can store your belongings away and maintain the cool, clean and uncluttered feel; it also hides a flat-screen TV, though this can't possibly compete with the view.
A basic yet tasty continental breakfast of pastries, bread, yoghurt, fruit, coffee and juice is served daily in the communal area, which also acts as a lobby. A vast double-height window infuses this room with light, and a spiral staircase leads up to the top deck, where you can take your food in fine weather. There’s also a vending machine offering soft drinks and snacks, and a refrigerator where guests can store their own food and drink. You can help yourself to free hot drinks (tea, coffee, cappuccino) at any time.
No other meals are on offer at CPH Living, but this being Copenhagen (perhaps the most culinary-crazed city in Scandinavia), options for eating out abound. Just a few minutes’ walk from the hotel is Noma, consistently voted one of the best restaurants in the world. It's expensive (and you'll need to book weeks, if not months, in advance), but its modern take on traditional Nordic cuisine is worth the splurge if you can afford it.
A cheaper option nearby is the hippy enclave of Christiania. Although the setting is a little grungy, it holds within its graffitied walls a remarkably good and well-respected restaurant: Spiseloppen. The exterior may look like an industrial warehouse, but inside it offers a cosy setting, friendly staff and divine food. The creative global cuisine - artichoke stuffed with spiced aubergine, roasted mushrooms with berry and aniseed sauce, grated fig and mozzarella gratin - is particularly good for vegetarians.
For something a little more upscale, head across the bridge and wander the few blocks to Tivoli Gardens, the vintage amusement park that’s more charm than cheese. The grounds are filled with dozens of restaurants, but 2 of the best are Michelin-starred The Paul and French-style NIMB Brasserie.
Children are welcome here, and will certainly enjoy the novelty of staying on a boat. Copenhagen is a safe and easy city for families to visit, with bike lanes everywhere. We don't recommend larger families stay here as the rooms are small
Children (4-12 years)
1 extra bed or 1 baby cot can be added to all rooms, but space is tight
Given the proximity of the water, parents should also keep an eye on children at all times - particularly on the outside deck