Copenhagen’s Kurhotel Skodsborg hotel approaches meetings holistically

by Oscar Magnus


At the Kurhotel Skodsborg, our “GusMester,” (Mist Master), Matthias, directs a blast of hot, perfumed air towards our sweating limbs with a matador-like swipe of the towel.

When combined with a plunge in the refreshing waters of the Oresund Strait, which separates Denmark and Sweden, this kind of aromatherapy may provide a near-instantaneous sensation of exhilaration and renewed vigor.

Young bearded man relaxing in a wooden sauna after a workout, wearing a white towel.

Relaxation and Wellness in a Wooden SaunaImage source: Fabio Principe/

As part of their comprehensive approach to their meetings and events portfolio, Denmark’s premier spa hotel offers “SaunaGus” as one of their distinctive activities.

More and more businesses are seeing the value of including wellness in their meeting and events programs in order to boost company culture, employee innovation, and employee productivity. Among the most hotly discussed future topics, it stands alongside “new technology” and “AI.”

Meeting planners and clients wishing to incentivize and improve attendees’ physical and mental health may find the Kurhotel Skodsborg’s unique combination of Nordic style, traditions, location, and healthy living ideas particularly helpful.

It’s common to hear that Danes are the happiest people on the planet. It’s no wonder, then, that the 23 meeting and event spaces at the Kurhotel Skodsborg, located just 20 minutes outside central Copenhagen, have been designed with the age-old principles of physical activity, healthy eating, exposure to natural elements like light and air, and a focus on one’s mental and spiritual health in mind.

The hotel’s location between the ocean and the forest (Dyrehaven, the former royal deer hunting grounds, now a UNESCO Heritage site) means that guests can go for a swim, ride bikes, run, walk, or just sit back and take in the scenery from one of the hotel’s two rooftop decks, one of which is used for yoga above the Spa & Fitness Centre and the other of which is perfect for cocktail receptions and al fresco events.

When you go through the hotel’s impressive white colonnades, you’ll find yourself amid a complex of buildings with a rich historical background. From 1852 on, it served as King Frederik VII’s summer resort. In 1898, Dr. Carl Ottosen established a sanatorium there, and the hotel continues to be guided by the tenets of the sanatorium he established. All of these factors come together to create venues that are really one of a kind.

Located next to the main hotel building is “Villa Rex,” a neo-classical structure that exudes old-world regal splendor and was formerly the site of royal dinners and state meetings. The villa’s main chamber leads onto a roundel room known as the “King’s Hall,” which can hold up to 70 people. The demonstration kitchen can accommodate 16 students as a culinary school, while the downstairs “Kitchen Rex” can accommodate 30–40 guests for food and wine tasting workshops that have been restored to their 19th-century glory.

Cooking workshop

Participants of an Andalusian Cooking Workshop at Mercado de Triana in Seville, Spain.

Andalusian Cooking Workshop at Mercado de TrianaImage source:Anibal Trejo/

Workshops in fitness and cooking with the hotel’s “Functional Lifestyle Mentor,” Thomas Rode, are an absolute must. The hotel’s Michelin-starred chef and health guru (an early adopter and watcher of the Paleo diet) epitomize the cutting-edge approach to business, physical fitness, and food that characterizes the whole establishment. We paddled out into the ocean with 12 kg kettle bell weights and SUPs, following in the footsteps of Rode’s weekly group of high-powered executives who have benefited from his approach (Stand-up Paddleboards).

A combination of swimming, doing push-ups while balancing on the boards, and using the water’s resistance against the bells ensures that you’ll be hungry after your workout. Then, with our assistance, Thomas prepares a delicious, nutritious, Paleo-oriented meal, teaching us valuable information on how to continue living this way when our visit is over. Motivating people in this way “builds collaboration, stimulates a competitive edge, and provides healthy living suggestions,” as he puts it.

Spa and fitness

Luxury, relaxation, and reward await the delegate in the large guestrooms, while the spa and fitness center, with its 120+ weekly schedule of courses, is only a key fob and hallway away from the major sections of the hotel. They may do as they like inside the Michelin-starred “Restaurant by Kroun,” which also has a stylish yet relaxing lounge with thick coffee table books and plush velvet seating. Modern conference rooms that can be combined in a variety of ways and connected together are located above and below the foyer, bar, and lounge areas.

The hotel’s MICE initiatives have helped it win many prizes in the last year, including “one of the 7 best spas in the world for 2018” in the Tatler Magazine Spa Guide and “best confectionery in Denmark” at the annual Danish Confectioner’s Championships. Mai Kappenberger, CEO of the Kurhotel Skodsborg, came up with the idea of “Mai’s Monday Meetings,” which won the Danish Events & Meetings Award for “Best Low Cost Meeting” in 2018. On the first Monday of every month, MMM gathers a group of accomplished women to try out a new fitness class, have a nutritious breakfast, and hear a speaker discuss an issue of the day.

A century after Dr. Carl Ottosen said, “Man has more endurance when work is interchanged with rest,” this statement is still true. Meeting and event planners have taken notice of the millennial generation’s heightened focus on health and wellness.

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