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Denmark is one of the most beautifully peaceful and unspoiled places I’ve ever seen. You see, five million quiet folk don’t take up much room in a country larger than England. Those that you see, fall into at least one of the following categories: they are:
on a bicycle,
law abiding, or
all of the above.
Driving about, you feel as though you are sailing serenely over calm rolling seas of fields, green with summer crops, hyphenated by cats-paws of lavender, and edged by forests of beech and spruce. Wild roses bank the lanes and swans white-cap the sheltered bays.
The island of Funen, known as the Garden of Denmark, lives up to its reputation at every turning. En route to Falsled Kro by way of Kvaerndrup and Faborg, a painter’s palette of green forests, blue lakes and bright yellow fields is interspersed with little villages filled with carefully-tended gardens of every flower imaginable.
Comprised of three, 18th-century, thatch-roofed buildings, Falsled Kro has 11 rooms of which 3 are suites, plus a bookable hunting lodge in the woods 2-3 miles from the inn that also has a private tennis court.
When I last visited, I was given number 15 which had a charming sitting room with a fireplace, a bedroom with two queen-size beds and a large bathroom tiled in blue and white (natch) with separate W.C’s and bidet. It was very comfortable; I especially appreciated the private, stone-paved terrace with freshly white-washed furniture, an antique millstone as a breakfast table, and a lavender-trimmed lawn where I soaked up the sun. Inside, the row of decanters of whisky, vodka, gin and Port (which had very discreet markings to show the maid how much we’d had) was a stylish touch.
In the main building, there is a large but cozy bar with a central, copper-hooded fireplace. Enjoying an aperitif while perusing the menu, I spied Jean-Louis Lieffroy, the famous chef who is also the owner, behind the bar. I had been hoping for a chance to chat when lo and behold, he came over to personally take my order. I don’t know about you, but I got exhausted personally running a hotel after seven years and I doubt very much if I would be taking dinner orders after sixteen! Even though Jean-Louis is a legendary talent, he was very pleased to discuss his menu and in a shy and charming manner, helped compose a delightful meal.
Dinner on the terrace with the masts of the distant yacht basin filtering the setting sun, couldn’t have been better; the six-course gourmet feast the next evening was just as perfect.
This really is one of the magic places in the world. The service is demurely efficient; each member of the staff is prettier than the last, and the setting, idyllic.