A five-minute stroll from Nyhavn, overlooking the sea, old Copenhagen and Amalienborg Palace, the massive Admiral was once a grain warehouse (circa 1787). Today it's one of the least expensive top hotels, cutting some frills and prices but retaining charm, from the cannons dotted around the place to the trendy warehouse-feel of the hotel's good-quality SALT restaurant. The harbor views are excellent.
Ask staff if they can point out the bullet holes in the walls from the famous Battle of Copenhagen, 1801, when British forces led by Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson attacked the city.
Thick stone walls are broken by rows of windows; guest rooms mix maritime accents with modern furnishings and prints. Each room has a sitting area with leather sofas surrounded by 200-year-old exposed rafter beams. Rooms on the first through fourth floors also have French balconies. As of 2018, rooms are currently being spruced up and given a more modern feel, although the existing tasteful decor doesn't feel tired by any means.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Half of the hotel's rooms overlook the harbor, half the street and old Copenhagen. Both views are pleasant, but the sea view is really the one to write home about.
The bathrooms, too, are in the process of being upgraded, and the change is perhaps a little more welcome here than in the rooms - from somewhat generic, if clean and comfortable, beige to more striking grey and gold. Cosmetics are all fairtrade.
A huge lobby runs the width of the hotel, dotted about with cannons, beams and chairs. The size is probably a good thing when the cruise guests come to town, as it might be the only one in town that can host the crowds without feeling cramped.
The hotel has a small wellness area with a sauna, steam bath and walk-in shower. In-house masseuses are also on hand.
There's no gym on-site, although guests can work out at Fitness DK, a 10-minute walk from the hotel, for 80 Danish kroner. Maps of harbourside jogging routes are also available.
The SALT bar and restaurant lends Nordic touches to modern French brasserie food. A beautiful harborfront café offers great views in summer. Breakfast is comprehensive and tasty.
Many of the city's main attractions, from the harborfront to the palace, are on your doorstep, although the neighborhood is still quiet. Alternatively, Kongens Nytorv Metro is a 10-minute walk.
Madklubben Bistro-de-Luxe (8-minute walk), the original outpost of this small-scale, hip chain in the city is pretty close, and worth a trip to feel like you're mingling with trendy locals and getting top cuisine at fairly reasonable prices. In summer, Copenhagen Street Food market (15-minute walk) is just across the river.
For a relaxed beer, try snug British-style pub, Charlie's Bar (14-minute walk). Bash19 (1-minute walk) is a refined gastropub, Copenhagen-style, very close to the hotel.
WHY WE LIKE IT
In the middle of the action, with bags of history and plenty of space, the Admiral is a top choice that doesn't charge top dollar. It's not super fancy, but the rooms - completely with 200-year-old beams in almost every one - are characterful, the harborfront views are lovely and the restaurant is relaxed and welcoming.