Across from the Royal Danish Theatre in Copenhagen, there’s a neo-classical Jugendstil building that now houses a plush hotel. So far, so relatively unremarkable – but there’s an unexpected link between the two, that seems to be lifted from a storybook.
A young boy of 11, who became captivated with ballet after watching his sister perform, started following classes at the Royal Danish Ballet School also located there, grew into the Theatre’s Principal Dancer at 21.
That young boy was named Alexander Kølpin, and he became a truly exceptional dancer, who had an artistically and intellectually flourishing career, even being awarded the respected Benois de la Danse prize for ‘Best Male Dancer in the World’ and being knighted by Queen Margaret of Denmark.
But far from considering his creative calling as his only one, Kølpin also branched out into entrepreneurial waters at a young age, as well. He founded his own dance company at age 24, and has worked as a director, producer and choreographer of commercials, short films and theatre.
Interestingly, he’s also lent his creative sensibility to the hotel business. His newest venture is Sanders, dubbed Copenhagen’s very first luxury hotel – and just one of the many ways that Kølpin sets out to bring people together, his mode of expression this time around being excellent design.
Enlisting the keen aesthetic eye of Pernille Lind and Richy Almond for the interiors of his 54-room hotel, Kølpin’s hotel is characterized by a blend of colonial, midcentury Danish and Asian influences. A departure from what is currently ubiquitous as typically Danish – a minimalist form of hygge – these spaces are full of warm colours and surprising textures such as rattan and bamboo, in an effort to incorporate elements of travel. But the hotel is still firmly rooted in Copenhagen through the serene design of the rooms themselves, which are elegantly furnished with mid-century pieces.
The TATA Bar at the Sanders is a cool hang-out for locals as well as travelers, and of course for theatre goers and cast who only need to cross the street for a beautiful Royal Ballet performance – a full circle experience is there ever was one.
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