Tried & Tested

Hotel check: Hotel Nimb

18 Jun 2015 by Jenny Southan

BACKGROUND

The Nimb originally opened as a dancehall and dining establishment in 1909. The palatial venue was launched by restaurateur husband and wife team Wilhelm and Louise Nimb, and designed by Danish architect Knud Arne-Petersen, who went to town on creating a fantastic Moorish façade, rather like Brighton Pavilion.

The property was given an extensive revamp in 2007, both inside and out (it was reclad in Venetian marble), during which time 17 boutique hotel rooms were added. The Brasserie, which faces the Tivoli gardens (open April-September) and has a huge outdoor terrace, was refurbished in 2012.

There are plans afoot to expand the Nimb with an extra 23 bedrooms and a spa. In the spring, a new Danish open sandwich shop called Fru Nimb was launched. An independent property, Nimb is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World.

WHAT’S IT LIKE?

While the main entrance from the street looks modern and relatively bland, the back of the building, which faces the Tivoli gardens (and is, therefore, the more important part) sees a sweeping Arabesque construction complete with minarets, a central dome and a wrap-around al fresco terrace flanked with archways and columns. These are illuminated at nights in thousands of coloured bulbs. It’s quite unlike any hotel I have ever seen and quite a contrast to the austere architecture of Copenhagen.

Inside, new Dinnesen wooden floors were laid, and rooms with fireplaces and windows that open out on to the gardens were turned into cosy bedrooms with antique writing desks, wardrobes and four-poster beds. Each one is slightly different as furnishings tend to be one-offs, while upholstery and sofas vary in their designs, some being more masculine and others more feminine.

WHERE IS IT?

Opposite Copenhagen’s Central station, looking on to the Tivoli gardens. It is a 15-minute drive from the airport.

ROOM FACILITIES

I loved my bedroom at the Nimb. All are slightly different (they start at 24 sqm and go up to 133 sqm) as feature original antique writing desks (a treat for me), coffee tables and wardrobes, carefully selected artworks and rich throws over the beds.

There was a Nespresso coffee machine (but no tea-making facilities), a working fireplace (ask staff if you want it lit), a huge B&O flatscreen TV and iPod dock, a four-poster bed made up with Geismars Egyptian cotton sheets, a sofa (although this was quite hard) and air conditioning. (All but one rooms has garden views.) At night, you can lean out and admire the amazing façade lit up like a Las Vegas pleasure palace.

The large bathroom had a huge free-standing tub, under-foot heating, a walk-in rainshower, twin sinks, robes, slippers, classy Aesop toiletries and a white orchid in a pot. A UK adaptor was in the wardrobe, which was handy, along with two umbrellas. Wifi is free throughout, and there is 24-hour room service.

RESTAURANTS AND BARS

The Nimb has six different F&B venues: Frau Nimb for open sandwiches; the Bar for drinks and brunch in the old ballroom; the Terrace in the Tivoli gardens for light seasonal cuisine; the Bar ‘N’ Grill for steaks (accessible from the street); and the underground Vinotek for wine-tastings, casseroles and charcuterie.

I had both breakfast (a sophisticated buffet of fresh bread, Danish cheese, juices, fruit, organic yoghurt, muesli, Fano pepper bacon, soft boiled eggs, champagne, smoked salmon and pastries for Kr 255/£25) and dinner at the Brasserie.

In the evening the restaurant had a particularly lovely atmosphere, with soft lighting, lots of laughter from nearby tables and attentive, friendly waiting staff.

There was a three-course seasonal set menu for Kr 380 (£36.50), as well as à la carte options such as veal tartare, moules marinières and Fine de Claire oysters, followed by stuffed quail or roasted North Sea cod. The highlight for me was a gorgeous starter of smoked trout and potato salad with wafer-thin slices of green apple and sprigs of dill – I didn’t want it to end.

BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES

The property has two beautiful historic ballrooms – the Rotunden (for up to 80 people) has original chandeliers, walls painted with blossom motifs and floors with pale wooden boards. The smaller Nimb Bar, meanwhile, puts on a lavish, child-free Bloody Mary brunch on Sundays, and can seat 50-people banquet-style.

The Kuplen can be hired for 20-people meetings, while the Brasserie can host 250 guests. The subterranean Vinotek can accommodate 100 delegates standing, and the four terrace salons also up to 100 when combined.

LEISURE FACILITIES

As well as access to the Tivoli gardens in summer, when you can often see and hear live concerts going on, there is a modest basement fitness room with three Technogym machines, a Kinesis station and Swiss balls. As mentioned previously, there are plans to also open a spa.

VERDICT

A unique property with excellent dining options and charming historical features. It’s not cheap though. There is a good choice of characterful event spaces and the location in the Tivoli gardens makes it very special. A lovely choice, especially if extending your stay over a weekend, but you may struggle to book a lower category room over the summer when it’s busy.

FACT FILE

  • HOW MANY ROOMS? 17 including 12 suites
  • HIGHLIGHTS The sumptuous homely interiors with Nespresso machines, open fires, Aesop products and B&O tech in the bedrooms, as well as the views into the gardens and the excellent food served in the Brasserie.
  • PRICE Internet rates for a Deluxe Double room started from Kr 5,900 (£567) in July.
  • CONTACT Hotel Nimb, Bernstorffsgade 5, Copenhagen; tel +45 8870 0000; slh.com

Jenny Southan

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