“Denmark is like a secret little place with its own special language.” – Helena Christensen
Recently, none other than The New York Times published an article about the Danish concept of hygge, a concept quickly traveling to the other side of the Atlantic :
It was well-written but nonetheless made us chuckle as we wrote about this very topic a couple of years ago on the page devoted to Copenhagen. It bears repeating :
To appreciate the seemingly endless pleasures of Denmark, particularly her people, one needs to first understand the Danish concept of hygge, a design philosophy which does not translate to a single English word. The premise is simple : one should create an environment which is comfortable, familiar, intimate, and inviting. It’s important to appreciate the effort in achieving this. Scandinavian winters are cold and harsh so one always needs to welcome family, friends and neighbors to environs which are instantly warm, not just in terms of temperature but approach, too. Stroll down any street in downtown Copenhagen, for example, in autumn and locate a hotel and look in the windows. You won’t be greeted with cold surfaces and harsh lighting. Instead, marvel at a wall 5 or 6 meters high and composed of hundreds of votive candles all lit. Or, duck into a cafe and be charmed by tables adorned with tapered candles and a fireplace nearby. That’s hygge.