The Danish Hotel Icon – SAS Royal Hotel Copenhagen

In 1956, the Danish design maestro Arne Jacobsen was given the coveted opportunity to design the world’s “first designer hotel”. The result is a stunning piece of modernist architecture celebrated the world over as the SAS Royal Hotel, the first skyscraper in Copenhagen. Built for the airline Scandinavian Airlines System (“SAS”), Jacobsen’s influences permeated every detail of the twenty-two storey masterpiece, from exterior design to interiors and furnishings. It was for this building that Jacobsen designed his iconic Egg, Swan, Drop and Pot chairs, which earned him critical acclaim in the fields of building and furniture design.



As an aficionado of Danish design, the hotel beckoned every time I visited the city. Well-located in Copenhagen’s city centre and a mere 3 minutes from Tivoli amusement park and Central Station, it was an unmissable landmark. Learning of its timely refurbishment in early 2018, we eventually decided to part with the hefty A$400 / night price tag (circa US$300 / night equivalent) and opened our eyes to the opulence of Scandinavian design.


Today, the SAS Royal Hotel (now rebranded as Radisson Collection Hotel, Royal Copenhagen) is still testament to the style icon’s aesthetic endurance. Whilst the redesign sought to modernise the interiors, it continued to celebrate its pre-existing character and soul.


The suspended spiral staircase, one of the most recognised features of the original design, has been artfully restored, allowing it to regain its rightful prominence as a seamless connection between the lobby and mezzanine space. Ultimately, in Jacobsen’s hotel, it will always be the furniture that takes pride of place and cements its position at the apex of Scandinavian luxury.



The writer stayed at Radisson Collection Hotel, Royal Copenhagen on 3 April 2018 as a full fee paying patron.

10 Comments Add yours

  1. Len Kagami says:

    Your photos look like they are coming out of the hotel’s portfolio 😀 Probably better!

    1. Jolene says:

      Thank you, that’s very high praise coming from you! The photos were very expensive haha, considering how expensive a night’s stay was, and I normally stay at crappy hotels to save $$… Where’s the most expensive place you’ve stayed at?

      1. Len Kagami says:

        I guess it was the stay in the Six Senses Resort in Ninh Van Bay. Approximately 500$ per night. But we paid it with holiday points, so it wasn’t very hurtful 🙂

  2. Forestwood says:

    This post makes me think this hotel is definite must stay despite the price tag!

    1. Jolene says:

      This hotel is awesome, and it’s been on my wish list for quite some time (we only stayed one night but well worth it)!

      1. Forestwood says:

        At that rate, I am not all that surprised you only stayed one night!!

  3. Isabelle says:

    Given the short geographical distance between Oslo and Copenhagen, we visited the capital of Denmark quite a few times but only stayed in this stunning hotel once. I recognised the artful details described in your post. Beautifully written and fabulous pictures Jolene! 😊

    1. Jolene says:

      Thanks for dropping by Isabelle, and really glad to hear you’ve stayed there as well! It’s such a gem isn’t it? Hope it brought you many wonderful memories. 😊

  4. Michaela says:

    This stairway is gorgeous! Even though I’m not a lover of dark interiors, this hotel is a legend born of concrete and one just has to admire it.
    How did you like your stay there? Are the rooms as cool as the rest of t his place?

    1. Jolene says:

      Hi Michaela, the hotel is a legend for sure! The rooms are great and comfy, not as iconic though, but definitely 5-Star standards. Hope you get to visit one day. 😊

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