Copenhagen is often referred to as one of the most popular cities and Europe, with just about the highest quality of life. And anyone who spent the last few days of August there will invariably agree. Blue sky, great mood, many young, pleasant and well-dressed people, that lightness of being that so strongly contrasts with the gravitas of life in Germany.
After years of stagnation and the decline of Copenhagen's long-standing furniture fair, which did not manage to stand its ground given the massive competition from Stockholm, this year Copenhagen has set out to free itself of the past. In the form of the small design fair named Code 09, which deliberately does not see itself as a reanimated furniture fair. And especially in the form of the "Copenhagen Design Week", which for the first time brings exhibitions, stores, showrooms and events all over town together to create a meaningful whole. In the course of two days, it offers you a good overview of the Copenhagen design world - with many an exciting glimpse of the fashion, art and architecture the city has to offer. The city's freeport to the north has emerged as the new hotspot for the best of Danish design. Alongside the Gubi showroom and the Montana, Vola, Erik Jörgensen and Kvadrat branches that opened in May in the former "Pakhus 48", now, ready for the Design Week, the new Fritz Hansen showroom is up and running. And they all enjoy a spectacular location at the water's edge and with a great view of downtown.
Speaking of which, downtown visitors will be wooed by the department store "Illums Bolighus", without doubt one of Europe's most beautiful design stores, just as they will be tempted by the small shops, such as that of new label Moomenti or the Engelbrechts showroom. The "It's a small world" exhibition organized by the Danish Design Center directly opposite the main railways station focuses on the role of the designer as problem solver.
At the fair itself I am especially taken by the concrete furniture designed by Komplot at the entrance and the exhibition on "Nordic Selected Design", which showcases the best design of the last decade from Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Iceland. Not to mention the exhibition on the "Aspen Design Challenge", for which students from all over the world tussled with the problem of water and possible solutions - from the viewpoint of design.
But the real star is Copenhagen itself, such an open-minded, innovative and cosmopolitan city, underscoring its status as one of the world's leading design and architectural metropolises.