25hours Hotel: Faculty in Colorful Transformation


© Stephan Lemke

25hours Hotel is tucked away in a former university building in Copenhagen’s medieval city center. This luxury hotel boasts a unique interior design that seamlessly blends the original spirit of the buildings with a contemporary aesthetic, celebrating its historical heritage amidst the heart of the Inner City.

It’s easy to overlook as you pass by. The facade closely resembles the original one from 1885 and doesn’t draw much attention in an area preserved in the same subdued color palette. But here, in Copenhagen’s majestic medieval center, surrounded by landmarks such as Trinitatis Church, the Round Tower, Pilestræde, and Købmagergade, you’ll find the luxury 25hours Hotel in a former department of the University of Copenhagen.

The past facade with a colorful interior

Once you step inside the understated exterior of the relocated faculty, you’re greeted with a burst of color. Everywhere, there’s a playful atmosphere – from the soft, red velvet furniture to the patterned, multicolored tiled floors. In one of the building’s old courtyards, there’s now a bar that serves as a circular gathering point and welcome hall for both travelers and locals.

References to the building’s time as a university are scattered throughout, and in the reception area, a massive book sculpture by artist Alicia Martin takes center stage. The former classic Copenhagen backyard has four original entrances, and the department’s initials have been preserved on them.

Today, the area is covered with a glass ceiling placed at the same height as the other buildings rooftops, transforming the old courtyard into a bright and inviting space. From the bar, you can enter the hotel’s restaurant, which features a retractable glass ceiling, allowing the outdoors to blend with the indoor space on warm summer evenings.

Above the archaeology

Since the 1740s, the address has housed various buildings. First a printing press, then the factory for Royal Copenhagen, and most recently, a part of the University of Copenhagen until 2017. Since 2022, the hotel has called this address home. A significant part of the project’s DNA is the respect for the historic area, which sits on an old cemetery. During the renovation, numerous archaeological finds were made, from old coins to skeletons, which made the renovation more time-consuming than estimated because much had to be excavated for future preservation.

The hotel spans several buildings connected by two new structures in black metal with golden window frames, respecting the personalities of the original facades.

The complex is tied together by the formerly dark courtyards, all transformed to meet contemporary needs. Besides the restaurant and bar area in the former courtyards, a third one has been converted into a tranquil garden, where guests have free access from the adjacent rooms through large glass doors. The rooms themselves are all uniquely decorated with textures, patterns, and colors as consistent themes.

Near 25hours Hotel

If you’re at the 25hours Hotel, consider taking a short walk to the Round Tower. From 35 meters above street level, you’ll be treated to a panoramic view of Copenhagen. Nearby, you’ll also find King’s Garden, where you can see Rosenborg Castle, and Hauser Plads and Trinitatis Church are also worth a visit.