Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Stock Exchange

The old stock exchange Børsen in Copenhagen is bursting with details. This shot is from above the main entrance and tells about its foundation in 1624 by King Christian IV. The most characteristic feature of it is the dragon spire, unlike any other spire in Copenhagen. Situated right next to Parliament in Christiansborg Palace it was still in use as a stock exchange until 1974. It's now owned by the Danish Chamber of Commerce and is used as a place for meetings and exhibitions.

Monday, June 29, 2009

"It's 21 past 9"

Yesterdays clock was a bit slow moving, but this one is traditional, though a bit big and very eye catching. It's on the side of the catwalk connecting two parts of Egmont's building in Copenhagen and spanning a busy street. Egmont is one of Scandinavia's leading media groups with interests in magazines, television, films and music.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Last post?

This might be the last post for the next week or so from me, as I'm not sure if I'll be able to get online much, if at all. I have planned and uploaded the posts, but as some of you bloggers might have noticed, Google have a problem with posting the scheduled posts at the right time or at all. If they haven't solved this problem then you might have to wait a week for my posts on details of Copenhagen.

For the last couple of weeks I haven't been able to follow up on your many nice comments as my work schedule have been more than a bit overbooked, and unfortunately I haven't been able to follow the many fantastic blogs out there either. That'll be the case for the next week too, but then I promise to take a look on all the comments and posts I've missed out on.

Fear not, I'll be back before you know it:-)

Btw the photo above is from Holmen's Cemetery. It's a child's windmill placed at one of the graves and blown by the wind.

What's the time?

Many buildings in Copenhagen have a clock on the facade, but this is the only one (as far as I know) that's got a clock shoving the zodiac. I haven't been around it long enough to see if it's actually working, but I'll keep an eye on it:-)

I always marvel at the attention to detail that the old builders put into their buildings, but with the present wages I don't think many can afford it today.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Golden apples

The fountain Caritasbrønden (Charity Well) on Gammel Torv (Old Square) in Copenhagen have surprise on certain days; golden globes representing golden apples is put in the upper fountain to jump on the jets of water. This occurs on Royal birthdays and Constitution Day and is a tradition going back to the 18th Century.

The fountain is from 1608, built by King Christian IV, the great Danish renaissance builder, and it's the oldest fountain in Copenhagen.

Friday, June 26, 2009

In English please

On Gammel Torv (Old Square) in Copenhagen I stumbled on an exhibition by a photographer named Doug Lansky. What were on show were his photos of strange and very funny signs from around the world. It just shows that English can be a bit of a challenge for many people.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

A necessity?

I haven't got a car and this is one of the main reasons; parking meters. In Copenhagen it's extremely expensive to park your car (4 Euro an hour in the day time), and with very few parking spaces around it's a battle to find a free one anyway. This is one of the new solar powered parking meters found on every corner of the inner city. With an expensive and rather slow public transport system, the best and quickest way to get around the city is by bicycle. Beware though that many of the drivers of these are quite sure that they are immortal, so they believe the red light and other "minor" traffic rules doesn't apply to them. With more and more bikes on the dedicated cycle paths it can be a battle there too.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


On most of the older squares in Copenhagen these kiosks are open for business. Selling coffee, cold drinks and sweets they are quite popular and quite charming too, I think. Kongens Nytorv, where I found this one, is Copenhagens most distinguished and exclusive square with the most luxurious hotel (D'Angelterre), the French Embassy, an art center and the Royal Theater lining the circular space.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A milestone

These old milestones are seen in many places in Copenhagen. This one I found in Christianshavn just where the old gate to Amager stood, the so-called Southern Gate or Amager Gate. It shows the distance to various villages on Amager such as Dragør and St. Magleby. Even though they don't have much function today it's nice to be reminded that 11 km was a long trip in the old days when on foot or by ox cart.

Attitude of Gratitude Award

Another honour was bestowed me by Trojan Gayle of Trojan's Corner. A many thanks to him for this award.

The rules of this award are as follows:

1.Put the logo on your blog or post.

That I can do:-)

2. Nominate at least 10 blogs that show an attitude of gratitude.

I know that I have to nominate 10 other bloggers, and it won't be difficult to find worthy recipients, but as with the awards of yesterday, I'll have to sleep a little on it to make sure I pick the right ones.

3. Link to your nominees within your post.

That will be done in time to come.

4. Comment on their blogs to let them know they've received this award.

I will in due time:-)

5. Share the love and link to this post and the person who nominated you for the award. Tell us how you've come to have an attitude of gratitude.

I'm very grateful to Trojan for his support and comments on this blog. His kindness has no bounds. It has been a pleasure to see his blog evolve and mature in the last couple of months. I hope that will continue in the future:-) A thousand thanks again!

Monday, June 22, 2009


This unicorn decorates an apothecary at Christianshavns Torv (Christianshavn's Square). This kind of figurines or stone carvings are seen on many of the older buildings in Copenhagen, though often not as elaborate as this one.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A flood of awards

Eddie_Bluelights of Clouds and Silvery Linings have awarded me a flood of awards:

The Uplifting Blogger Award that "goes to fellow bloggers who visit frequently and raise spirits with their kind words of encouragement, their beautiful images and their wonderful outlook on life. They make blogging a positive experience and continue to make life richer..." with a plate of Fish and Chips on the side.

On top of that plate was a Zombie Chicken Award that is given to "the Blogger who believes in the Tao of the Zombie Chicken – excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all…"

And last, but not least, was a peace dove to place on the side panel to show what all this blogging is ultimately about.

A thousand thanks to Eddie for this flood, which I might need the fire department to clear me of :-) Do pay him a visit as his is a blog where you can't help but be entertained and awed. I will in due time pass these awards on, and the trouble with that is which one of the many great blogs out there to choose. Oh well, I'll sleep on it...

Need a colour?

People seeing this building for the first time gets a bit surprised, to say it mildly. This explosion of colours is a cinema called Palads Theater in central Copenhagen. Originally a white building built in 1918 to house the Palads Theater, it was re-painted in 1989 by Poul Gernes to the horror of quite a few of the citizens. Now it's considered a landmark. I admit, when I first saw it, I thought that it was one of the ugliest sights I'd ever seen, but now I have warmed to it.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A big painting

This painting on a house end is from the same street as yesterday's post, Gl. Kongevej. In fact it's right across from the Planetarium I showed you in an earlier post. I'm not sure what the motive is, so I'm open to suggestions:-)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Painting the house

In Copenhagen many of the older house ends are painted. It can be a naturalistic painting, an add or more abstract like the one above found in Gl. Kongevej (Old King's Road) in Frederiksberg. A great idea to cover otherwise dull surfaces in colours and forms instead of just giving them one colour (which of course would be a shade of grey). Some of these paintings was in fact made by artists like Henry Heerup or Hans Scherfig. Many of the paintings disappear over time due to neglect, smog or demolition, or they're covered by new owners who like something else.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Let there be light

Queen Louise's Bridge spanning Peblingesø (Peblinge Lake, pebling was a student in a grammar school) is one fine bridge, and these old lamp posts are great. The bridge was built in 1885-1887 and named after King Frederik IX's Queen. It was designed by architect Vilhelm Dahlerup, who also designed the Dragon Lamps of a previous post. On the bridge are 8 of these lamps and 4 flag poles.

On the lamp posts are details like these.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


At St Thomas's Square at the end of Frederiksberg Allé are two monuments to commemorate the foundation of the city of Frederiksberg. On all four sides of the monuments are these great copper lions. Frederiksberg is a municipality that is surrounded by the municipality of Copenhagen. It's the smallest municipality areawise in Denmark and has a total population of 95.000. It started out as a farming town in June 2, 1651 when King Frederik III gave 20 Danish-Dutch families the right to settle here. When a Royal Palace was build on top of Valby Hill the town started to grow as a merchant town, and now you'll have to look in futile for any farms in this area. It's considered a upper class area, especially among its inhabitants.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A big pretzel

Many Americans might think that the shop decorated with this sign is a sure place to buy a pretzel, but that would be wrong. It's the Danish sign for a bakery, and the "pretzel" shown is called a kringle in Danish; it's a huge Danish pastry, enough for 10 people. Usually it's bought in smaller slices. It's flaky layers of Danish filled with almond paste, raisins and apricot filling, shaped into a pretzel, just before it is baked, it is topped with sugar and sliced almonds. The crown above it shows that the bakers were appointed by the Court.

I found this sign in Hyskenstræde. Hysken is the old Danish word for outhouse and Stræde means alley, so this was the alley the night men used to carter the night soil from the city's outhouses to the canal around Christiansborg Palace. This must have been quite a smelly place once upon a time.

BTW Due to a busy work schedule in this and the following weeks, I might not be able to answer your comments as quickly as I would have liked, but don't worry, as soon as time permits, I'll get back to you. Another thing I'm neglecting at the moment is my visits to all of your great blogs; again I promise that I'll turn up when my time isn't divided between work, meals and sleep:-)

Monday, June 15, 2009


On a very red building in one of my favorite squares in Copenhagen, Gråbrødre Torv (Grey Monks Square) this sign is placed over a door. Translated to English it says:

The first stone
I have laid
Why I thank the Lord
What the fire have devoured
The Lord again have given
BKL 1732

This area was destroyed in a big fire in 1728, but hastily rebuild so that it's now a really nice square, lined with original houses from the middle 18th Century. In the center of the square is a big chestnut tree and some great restaurants can be found here, among them the (in Denmark) famous Peder Oxe.

The square got its name from the old Franciscan monastery that lay here from 1238 until 1530 were it was closed because of the excesses and life of luxury of these so-called beggar monks.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Water spout

On a building in Frederiksberg Allé this strange water spout can be found. It's on a building called Sans Souci, a building build in the beginning of the 20th Century. The name is older though; here was a country home build in 1798 by master builder J M Quist who gave it the name of Sans Souci. A nearby restaurant also keeps the name alive.

Frederiksberg Allé have been called the Champs Elysees of Copenhagen, and the avenue do bear a kind of resemblance with that great place; tall trees line the strait broad street and the buildings from 1900 are rather nice. It's a fashionable (and expensive) address to have, but it's got very few shops, very little traffic and only a couple of café's to visit. Champs Elysees it's not, but I think it's a nice street anyway.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Not a hat maker

Signs can be deceptive; this is not a hat maker's sign but the sign of Image House, a company that is a "supplier of components and systems for automatic visual inspection and analysis in laboratories and industries" as they state on their website. Their office is in Store Kannikestræde or Great Collegial Canon Alley, named after the three old colleges in the area.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Hats anyone?

Another hat maker...and one of the oldest in Copenhagen. It's said to be the only gentlemen's hat maker in Scandinavia, but I doubt that to be honest. The shop is on one of the busiest pedestrian streets in Denmark, Købmagergade (Merchant Street), wich is part of the area called Strøget (literally the Shopping Street).

Here most of the major retailers have a shop and it's packed with people. You can be sure to encounter street performers, beggars, bleeding hearts trying to get a signature on a petition or just plain old fraudsters and pickpockets. At night I avoid this area, as mobs of drunken youngsters dominate it as soon as it turns dark.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Need a hat?

In the old part of Copenhagen you can find all manner of old signs. This hangs outside a...hatmaker (of course). I love these old signs; they have so much more charm than the new ones.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A new Dragon

Yesterdays dragon lamp was a hundred years old, this one is only a couple of years old. It is right next to the Copper Tower I've shown in a previous post and is lighting a parking lot. It was designed by Dutch architect Adrian Geuze, who actually was inspired by Vilhelm Dahlerup's Dragon Lamps. When I saw it, I really felt stared at! So yes, they do know how to make fine details today too.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Blog de Ouro

Today I received this nice award thrice, once from Joo of Daily haiku, once from Unseen Rajasthan from Unseen Rajasthan and once from Asta from Hyperenergy and other obstacles. I'm really honoured and happy to recieve this one. Thank you to the three of you:-) And to all others; do pay them a visit as all three know how make an interesting blog.

Now I have to follow rules which are:

- Put the Award in the blog
- Link back to the blog who gave you it
- Pass the Award on to other blogs
- Inform owners about Award
- Make rules visible

And these are my blogs:

Scottsdale Daily Photo
Photo Carraol Images of Mexico City
Clueless in Boston
Nikon sniper
Trieste Daily Photo

All great blogs that deserves to be recognised.

PS: I've had to revise this post as I got the award more than once:-)

Honest Scrap Award

Jacob of Creative Confections and Ocala Daily Photo has awarded me the Honest Scrap Award. This is a great honor, for the Honest Scrap Award is bestowed upon a blogger whose blog content or design is, in the giver's opinion, brilliant. The Honest Scrap Award is for bloggers who post from their heart, who oftentimes put their heart on display as they write from the depths of their soul.

It is suggested that recipients provide 10 different ways in which they are honest. That is a tall order, as it's sometimes better not to be too honest ("Honey, do I look fat in this dress?"), but I'll try anyway:

  1. When writing on my blog I often has to refer to Wikipedia and a dictionaryI do my posts in advance, mainly to avoid being forced to abandon a daily post because of busyness.
  2. I positively hate to be the center of attention, especially at parties and conventions, so forget to get me to hold that inspiring speech.
  3. I do suffer acutely of vertigo. Rollercoasters and tall towers are not my thing. I do have a season pass to Copenhagens biggest amusement park, Tivoli, but that's only to enjoy the garden.
  4. I often cancel everything in the weekends, shut down my phones and refuse to open the door. I do need some time off from people from time to time.
  5. I'm lazy, especially when an unpleasant task has to be done. Why do it today, if it can be postponed until next month? Luckily enough I also work well under pressure.
  6. When having to choose between sports, reality programs and chicken breeding from the Faroes Islands on the telly, I choose a good book.
  7. I read a lot, but I prefer to be entertained instead of having to endure one of the litterary classics. Hemingway, Dostejevskiij and Karen Blixen are not on my bookshelves, Bernhard Cornwell, Robert Ludlum and Steven Pratchett are.
  8. The same goes for movies. I love a good movie, but I think life is too short to be bored by them.
  9. I'm a controle freak when travelling. Everything is planned from home and nothing is left to chance. I can change the plans on-the-fly, but that only result in new detailed plans.
  10. Also when travelling I have the principle that if it can't fit in one bag, something will be left behind.
It is also suggested the award be bestowed upon other deserving bloggers, and that I intend to do.

Theme start: Details

As I told yesterday, I'm starting a new theme today, details of the city. In this theme I'll show you lamps and poles, stone carvings and figurines, doors and windows, signs and posters, and all manner of details in the city of Copenhagen. I might not write so much to each post and I will only post a few photos at a time, but I'll try to show you what I think is the most important in a city, the details. A city can have great buildings and roads and loads of people, but what really defines it, is the smallest of details.

Today's image is from Toldboderne, the old tax booths on the wharf of Langelinie. Here a couple of dragon lamps give light to the area. They were designed by Vilhelm Dahlerup in 1892. They don't make them like this anymore...or rather that was what I thought! I'll show you tomorrow how sadly mistaken I was.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Visit the stars!

A fitting end of my theme, a building bathed in a sunset

Right next to one of the artificial lakes that ring the old part of Copenhagen is a building that houses the biggest IMAX theater in Copenhagen, the Tycho Brahe Planetarium. It's named after renowned Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, who is known for his many observations on the movement of stars and planets. The legend tells that he died in Prague of a burst bladder at a Royal dinner, because he couldn't leave before the king.

The fountains make for good rainbows

The Planetarium's star projector can show 4.000 stars and the solar system, and underneath is a small museum. It also got a great restaurant appropriately called Cassiopeia. The building was a gift by Bodil and Helge Petersen to the Urania Foundation, and it was finished in 1989.

This concludes my theme of modern buildings. I've missed out on quite a few, but I think it's time to move on, before you get too bored with buildings. I'll stay in town, so to speak because my new theme starting tomorrow will be about what really defines a city, the details.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

From Fast Patrol Boats to apartments

This building was formerly used as a production hall for fast patrol boats when the area of Holmen was the biggest Danish Naval Base. The concrete hall was built in 1952, is 130 m long, 33 m wide and 17 m tall. When the Navy abandoned most of the area in the 1990's the building was rebuilt as an apartment block with a very large glass roofed atrium and its very own internal wharf. Of the original building only the visible concrete pillars and the steel girders are left. With its wharf right beside the canals around the old fortifications this is a regular stop for all the sightseeing boats.

Tomorrow I'll show you the last stop on my tour of modern buildings in this theme, as I'll start a new theme in two days. The building tomorrow would like to take us to the stars...or at least show them to us:-)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

From red to green in 20 years

The Copper Tower or Plesner Building is just a stone throw away from the statue of the Little Mermaid on Langelinie Warf. It's covered in copper plating, and therefore it started out flaming red (I haven't got a picture of that), then turned brown but as the copper oxidise further it'll turn green in the next couple of decades. Built in 2004 it houses the international law firm Plesner and has shops and cafe´s on the ground floor.

Just across from it are the ferries to Norway and Poland, and next to it is a little old building; a former train station. The train station is preserved and so can't be torn down or moved.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Bury that coffin!

Probably the most debated building in Copenhagen this one is either hated or loved by the citizens. Built in 1996 to house ticket sale for the public transport, tourist information and public toilets it wasn't the most expensive building with a cost of 1.5 mio. Euros. It's situated at Copenhagen's City House Square, one of the busiest places in Copenhagen with a great number of crossing bus lines, lots of cars and bikes and pedestrians in great flocks.

Critics say that it divides the square into two, it's design clashes with the buildings surrounding the square and that it's plain ugly. Several mayors have promised to tear it down, until they discovered what the cost would be and that something had to replace it. So the Black Coffin, as it has been nicknamed, still stands firm.

The discussion have finally ended though, because a new metro station will be built here, so now the building is on the demolition plan for this year. One of the "tenants" in the building will have to find a new location to place a television studio, as Denmark's Radio's Evening Show has been broadcast live from here for the last couple of years.

The City Hall

I for one won't miss this coffin!