escape, minimal design, travel guides

Travel: An (honest) review of SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

The headboards at boutique hotel SP34 in Copenhagen are possibly the most instragrammed ever. I’d seen plenty of this hotel across social media, so it was first on my list of places to stay when I hopped over to the Danish capital for a work trip last month. The beautiful, minimal design lived up to all my expectations, with its pared-back style and relaxing, muted colours. There were a few things that could be improved that I’ll get onto later, but it’s still one of the best places to stay in the city.

Part of the Brøchner Hotels chain, SP34 is designed for ‘luxury bohemians’ with 118 simple yet elegant bedrooms, a cosy entrance lobby and bar, a private cinema for 25 people and access to two stylish restaurants. The hotel, right in the heart of the historic city centre, opened in April 2014 and featured on Condé Nast Traveler’s list of the 60 best new hotels in 2015. Located on Sankt Peders Stræde, the name refers to its address at number 34.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

The bedrooms are the main draw of SP34. Minimal but refined with a Nordic touch, they feature deep, dark, dove grey walls and soft, battleship grey carpets. It could have the effect of being oppressive, but the generous beds with their curved wooden headboards (which remind me a little of an Arne Jacobsen chair) and the crisp, white bedlinen lift the look and feel of the space. The leather headrests can slide up and down the wooden headboard to suit people of different heights.

Larger rooms feature a small table and chairs, while a clever, multifunctional storage unit can be used for hanging clothes or making a cup of tea. Jewel-like, amber light fittings and industrial-style task lights either side of the bed add ambience and style.

I had a lovely room up in the eaves, with a window looking out onto the rooftops. There was something quite magical about being warm and cosy inside and watching the snowflakes fall outside.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in CopenhagenTravel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

After a couple of years since opening, the rooms could probably do with a little TLC to be honest. For me the room was a little too stripped back, I could have done with a magazine or two or a few other finishing touches; in fact there wasn’t even any information with breakfast times, room service etc, not that I could find. I’m lucky enough to stay in quite a few nice hotels for my day job and on my travels, so I’ve got to know what works and what doesn’t. It’s all about the little details that make you feel at home – a fluffy dressing gown perhaps, some complimentary bottled water, a bed which isn’t too hard and most importantly a plug within easy reach of the bed (it’s amazing how many hotels can’t get this right…). It’s not really too much to ask, and I don’t think I was being too fussy here, but these things should be standard in any hotel room. Some of them were missing here at SP34, which prevented it being a perfect stay and more a 3 out of 5 star stay.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

That being said, the bathrooms were beautiful, with clean, white tiles and handsome concrete sink units. The REN bathroom products (my favourite!) were an added bonus, and the underfloor heating a real luxury. There was a slight smell of drains but its looks (and the opening of a window) made up for it, the room just probably hadn’t been used for a few days.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

The downstairs lobby is a really welcoming, homely space, with cosy couches for slouching, lots of artwork on display and a warming fireplace. There’s spaces for working on laptops, tables for meetings and areas to relax. The best bit? From 5-6pm everyday there is a wine hour, with a complimentary glass of red or white. What could be better than that to wind down after a day of sightseeing?

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

The organic breakfasts, hosted in the next door’s plant-filled restaurant Väkst, make for a great start to the day. There’s fresh juices and good coffee, buttery pastries and freshly baked bread, and all sorts of kilner pots with cereals, fruit salads and more.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

I didn’t get to try Väkst but you can read more about it over on my friend Hannah’s blog Hannah in the House. The centrepiece of the restaurant is this greenhouse, which connects the raw, industrial atmosphere of the basement floor with the light, green space of the ground floor.

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in CopenhagenTravel: A stay at SP34 hotel in CopenhagenTravel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

I’m sure I’ll be back to hotel SP34, not least for those cocooning headboards, minimal design and brilliant, central location. A few improvements could be made to bring it up to standard and the staff could have been more helpful, but I wanted to give you an honest review and show the reality behind the perfectly edited pictures of Instagram. Excitingly, a new luxury boutique hotel, Hotel Danmark, is opening in April by Brøchner Hotels and I can’t wait to visit and see how it shapes up in comparison.

Have you ever been to SP34, what did you think?

Travel: A stay at SP34 hotel in Copenhagen

Hotel SP34, Sankt Peders Stræde 34, Copenhagen. Reservations and more information here.

All images Cate St Hill

12 Comments

  1. I really love the string wall. The bathroom too – with the mix of tiling big and small. Lots of ideas to steal here.

  2. I love your honesty! I’ve stayed at SP34 a couple of times but not for 18 months or so, so interesting to hear it might need a bit of TLC. Great to hear they’re still doing wine hour! And I know just what you mean about plug sockets near bed – a pet hate of mine too! x

    • Thank you, glad you appreciate my honesty! The wine hour is the best though, I’d go back for that alone 😉

  3. It’s refreshing to see an honest review. I don’t think this would put me off visiting – but hopefully someone will see this post and make a few small changes. x ps. nice pics.

    • Thank you Carole, I really appreciate it. It wouldn’t put me off going back, but there’s just a few things it could improve on x

  4. Great post and I applaud you for being so honest. Sounds like they’ve rested on their laurels a bit

  5. Loved your review and your honesty! I think you are absolutely right to expect the little extras because that’s what makes it feel more like a home away from home! 🙂 That said, I love the headboards and the light fixtures and the bathroom is stunning. That greenhouse is really beautiful as well! xx

  6. I enjoyed reading this. Hope they get their comfort level up to their level of color use. I like when folks can use plants beautifully while still letting them be plants. The cactus is hilarious, though.

    • Thank you, yes they need a better balance of style and substance, but still a lovely stay and those headboards are still dreamy! x

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