Skovshoved Hotel

Charlottenlund, Copenhagen, Denmark Book from DKK1,225

Reviewed by Will Hide
A romantic seaside getaway with a great restaurant, 30 minutes from central Copenhagen
If you've ever wanted to stay in one of those inimitably stylish Scandinavian seaside hotels - airy interiors, seductive lighting, cosy fires, welcoming bar - then you've hit the jackpot here. It's been a hotel in some shape since the 1600s, although the present building dates back to 1860. Despite being only 30 minutes by bus from central Copenhagen, you feel a world away in this pleasantly sleepy, affluent suburb (think the Danish equivalent of the Hamptons).

Head inside the pristine flowerbox-clad frontage, slip past reception and find a candlelit sitting area with an honesty bar and plenty of white sofas on which to lounge; round the corner, the restaurant has received a Michelin recommendation. Upstairs are 20 light-filled bedrooms (plus 2 in a separate annexe), and there's a cosy pub bang next door. Five minutes' walk away, the hotel has a private jetty from where the hearty (and hardy) can dive into the sea for a bracing pre-breakfast wake-up, and slightly further on there's a beach for those gloriously long Scandinavian summer evenings.

Highs

  • Easy access to some of the area's best beaches, plus the bus from central Copenhagen stops right outside; bike hire is available, too
  • A lovely historic feel, with plenty of photos charting the hotel's long past
  • Breakfast on your private balcony, overlooking the sea
  • Excellent food, both in the formal restaurant (which has a Michelin Bib Gourmand) and the buzzy pub; alternate between them according to your mood
  • The rooms are generally large and bright

Lows

  • The suburban location is very quiet - not ideal for first-time visitors to the city or those seeking nightlife
  • Despite the cosy fires, seaside Copenhagen on a grey winter's day is pretty grey indeed
  • Access to the sea jetty and beach is across a fairly busy main road
  • Some areas feel a little worn around the edges (carpet stains, peeling paintwork)

Best time to go

Ideally summer, to take advantage of the beaches and long evenings. But if you're looking for a romantic bolthole where you can cuddle up with your partner by the fire, the hotel works well even on the greyest winter day.

Our top tips

The lounge area lends itself to kicking off your shoes and curling up with a good book. There are some to borrow, but you'll need to bring your own unless you speak Danish.

Great for...

Beach
Foodie
Honeymoon
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 22
  • Restaurant and bar (open daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available
Room: Standard Room

Rooms

The 22 rooms are serene and elegant, with white furniture, crisp linens, a few arty paintings on the walls, and dark wooden floors decorated with rich rugs. Ensuites have showers only (except the 2 Suites, which have tubs as well), and you get Molton Brown smellies. Double glazing cuts out some noise, though you may still hear occasional traffic and footsteps (we were more aware than annoyed).

On our last visit in 2014 we stayed in one of the Superior Rooms, which are beautifully light and airy. It’s definitely worth paying a bit more for one of these if you can, as they’re set at the front of the hotel with kingsize (or twin) beds, balconies and (albeit distant) sea views. Standard Rooms are smaller, with double beds, and face the car park, though they’re a little quieter as they’re at the rear of the building. The Junior Suites and Suites have large sitting areas, and some rooms and suites have sofabeds that are useful for families.

Features include:

  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Internet access
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries
  • Tv
  • WiFi
  • Wifi internet

Eating

It’s no mean feat, but the Michelin-recommended in-house restaurant (open daily for lunch and dinner) genuinely does manage to be smart yet unpretentious - something the Danes do effortlessly well. It serves a mix of local and Mediterranean-inspired dishes on white-clothed tables - you might start with risotto with chantarelle mushrooms, sage and fried sweetbreads, before moving onto roasted venison served with salt-baked celery, chestnuts and a wild jus.

We ate at the attached pub, the Skovshoved Kro (open daily from noon), and would definitely recommend dining here at least once. It oozes character, with a good-value menu that you can wash down with a bottle of Number 16 Ale or something on tap, and during our Saturday evening visit the place was heaving with locals. Portions are hearty - our rack of BBQ ribs, deep-fried pork and homemade slaw proved a delicious way to max out our calorie quota in one go - and there are pool tables for post-meal entertainment.

Breakfast, served back in the main restaurant (but not included in the rates), is a typical but extensive Danish spread of coffee, juices, rye bread, cheeses and meats, with a few hot options such as eggs, bacon and sausages.

Features include:

  • Breakfast
  • Cooking classes
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
  • Vegetarian menu
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Make like the Danish and hire a bike, then pedal off with the locals to the nearby beaches. Charlottenlund and Bellevue are considered the best in the Copenhagen region
  • Go swimming in the sea from the hotel’s private jetty
  • Cycle or take a horse-drawn cart around Dyrehaven, a national forest near the hotel which is home to over 2,000 deer
  • Head slightly further up the coast to the Louisiana Modern Art Museum - worth visiting as much for its setting amid verdant seaside gardens as for its collection of contemporary Scandinavian art
  • Take the bus into central Copenhagen for some sightseeing and shopping - design-junkies should head to Illums Bolighus in the centre of town, a one-stop shop for Scandinavian desirables all under one roof. Just be prepared to max out the credit cards...
  • The famous Nyhavn Canal with its colourful 19th-century houses is definitely worth a visit. Have a beer in one of the many restaurants and enjoy the view
  • There are plenty of galleries and museums to visit: check out the sobering Museum of National Resistance, which highlights the years under Nazi occupation, as well as the National Museum. The Ordrupgaard Art Museum is also excellent. A 'Copenhagen card' gives access to many, as well as public transport

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cooking classes
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Golf
  • Historical sites
  • Museums / galleries
  • Sailing
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Wildlife
  • Windsurfing

Kids

Children are welcome - and will love the nearby beaches, deer park and Bakken (the world's oldest theme park, just a short journey away) - but there are no special facilities for them. Bear in mind that a busy road runs past the hotel.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

Superior Rooms and Junior Suites can take an extra bed and/or baby cot, and the Suites have space for 2 extra beds or baby cots. Some rooms and suites also have sofabeds, or you can book a 'Family Room' (a Suite, Junior Suite or Superior Room set up for 2 adults and 2 children).

Babysitting:

Babysitting is available by arrangement.

Baby equipment:

Baby cots are available on request.

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kid Friendly:

Our guests' ratings...

9/
Rooms
10/
Food
8/
Service
9/
Value
9/
Overall

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