An impressive new hotel Villa Copenhagen has opened within the Danish capital’s historic Central Post & Telegraph Head Office, originally built and designed in 1912 by architect Heinrich Wench. The century-old architectural landmark has a prime location adjacent to the famed Tivoli Gardens and Copenhagen’s main train station. F&B design studio, Epicurean – the emerging sister company from London-based luxury interior design house, Goddard Littlefair – was called upon to transform this former iconic building, with the aim to accentuate its historic aspects and architecture while also introducing contemporary Nordic designs. Specialising in creating and developing F&B concepts across both hotels and standalone venues, the team was tasked with designing Villa Copenhagen’s five food and beverage spaces, including a dynamic all-day restaurant Brasserie Kontrast.

Designed with the inner city locale in mind, The Brasserie has its own street entrance, which is positioned on the corner of the building facing the train station and ‘highline’, which leads residents and tourists into the new city district. Styled to be approachable for the Danish market and authentic to guests, it channels unpretentious mid-century design with beautifully crafted references of the past and present. Inspired by the hotel’s building and it’s detailing and quirks, the design intention for the Brasserie Kontrast was to create a feeling of the space being always present, accumulating character and memories over time.

The orange mohair upholstery welcomes guests upon arrival, and brings vibrancy and smile to the understated and textured room. Space features a ceiling from Granorte, an eco-friendly cork tile which provides a natural texture above eye level and provides acoustic and thermal insulation. Bespoke globe lights, inspired by Louis Poulsen lights hung within the building, were re-made by Flos Lighting with an added leather wrapped arm. Parquet flooring which once featured in the room was reinstated.

The building’s original brick walls were exposed, and original fan-lights which were above every doorway in the building – were stripped, redecorated and turned into mirrors within the area. Bringing Danish warmth to the heart of the restaurant, a large wrap around open kitchen was created, placing Chef Tore Gustafsson and his team centre stage, allowing them to be seen from every corner. Combining natural and mid-stained Oak in the joinery and furniture selections created a relaxed and non-contrived aesthetic akin to Scandinavian furniture where tones of timber are used in carpentry.

Taking cues from historic features found in the hotel, such as a dash-dot motif on the original post desk, Epicurean have cemented a feeling of timeless integrity into the scheme. Design team has sought to respect the non-hierarchical underpinnings of Danish dining, while drawing on its interiors expertise and hospitality prowess to deliver a thoughtful, contemporary and functional scheme.

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