For the almost six years I’ve lived in Denmark, I’ve lived in Sluseholmen, a relatively new residential area at the bottom of the Copenhagen harbor. When we first moved here, it was quite far out and quiet, there were no stores apart from a lone Irma and a cafe that closed soon after.
Over the past three years or so, though, the area has virtually exploded with growth. New residential buildings now cover the entire stretch up to Fisketorvet shopping mall, there’s a school, and more and more people are moving here. In the beginning, it kind of felt like an invasion of sorts – as if our little secret area had been discovered. And yes, living across from construction sites for the better part of two years isn’t that fun, either.
But the development does have its benefits. With more and more people moving out here, more and more businesses came as well. We now have a Ricco’s coffee shop, sushi, pizza, and a Netto supermarket (a much appreciated relief for our lazy grocery budget!) in walking distance. New residential buildings have store space on the ground floors and I’m crossing my fingers for a nice bakery, flower shop, or wine bar.
Over the next couple of weeks, I’m planning to introduce a few places around Sluseholmen and the older Sydhavn neighborhood, to show that this area is worth a trip!
Yum Yoga & Café
Though it has only been open for about a month, Yum Yoga & Café has quickly become a favorite of mine. Located on the Teglholmen island right by the boat bus stop, it’s a combination of – you guessed it – yoga studio and cafe with a focus on healthy, delicious food.
The two owners, Sidsel and Lulu, are from the area – Sidsel has lived in Sluseholmen from the very beginning and Lulu grew up in the older part of Sydhavn, before moving away and then moving back more recently.
Their cafe is a beautiful space right by the water: you can lounge in deck chairs outside with a coffee or a lunchtime salad, or practice yoga with a view of the harbor – a pretty unique experience even for Copenhagen!
The interior is beautifully decorated in soft pastel tones – mint, turquoise, and blush – with an airy feel to it. The branding is very consistent and thought-through, which I personally am a huge fan of. Their coffee is delicious and – of course – dairy free milks are available.
A place to dwell
For their yoga studio, it was important to Sidsel and Lulu to create a place to dwell, where you could hang out after a yoga session to enjoy the afterglow and serenity that yoga creates before heading back out into the hustle and bustle of everyday life. If you’ve ever practiced yoga, you’ll know the feeling after a good session – a sense of calm and peace of mind – but that bubble quickly bursts as soon as you step out on the noisy street, fish for your phone in your purse to check your emails or latest social media notifications, and think about the groceries you still need to buy for dinner.
We wanted to create a space where you could enjoy the feeling after a yoga class and slowly prepare yourself to head back out into the world. – Lulu
They initially expected that most of their “spillover” would be yoga students staying for a cup of coffee after class, but they’re actually noticing quite a lot of crossover the other way, too: cafe guests noticing the yoga studio and swinging the next day to take a class.
Personally, I love the idea of creating a holistic experience. It’s unique in the Copenhagen yoga scene, and even though I’m not used to hanging around after a yoga class quite yet, I certainly hope to do so more frequently in the future.
Focus on sustainability
One of the great things about opening your own place is that you can put your own touch on everything and really focus on what’s most important to you. – Sidsel
One thing Sidsel and Lulu are passionate about is sustainability. This idea runs as a red thread through all of Yum, starting with the materials used in interior design and ending with the recyclable packaging for their food and drinks.
The yoga studio uses eco-friendly cork mats – which, by the way, are absolutely fantastic! – made from recycled cork and rubber. The cafe does not have straws, another conscious decision to reduce plastic waste, which also doubles as a conversation starter and helps raise awareness among patrons for topics like waste reduction and plastic pollution.
The cafe’s food offering is sourced from local organic bakery Bagerdygtigt and Grennesminde Gård, an organic farm in nearby Taastrup, which focuses on local and seasonal ingredients. They sell sparkling tea from a local Copenhagen company and honey made in Sydhavn – a testament to their commitment to the area.
Dynamic yoga with different teachers
Neither Sidsel nor Lulu are yoga teachers themselves, though especially Lulu is a long-time practitioner. That means that the yoga studio is still finding its signature style. Most commonly, it’s yoga teachers who open their own studios, meaning that their studios will inevitably be a reflection of their own yoga and teaching style. At Yum, the focus is on dynamic forms of yoga, including relatively unique forms like Kundalini and Jivamukti.
Teachers at Yum are a diverse mix of newer and experienced teachers, reflecting the owners’ belief that every teacher has something unique to bring to the table – or rather, the mat.
I’m super thrilled to have such a lovely place open so close by my house, and I’m sure I’ll be a frequent visitor to both the cafe and the yoga studio. If you see me there, come say hi!
Yum Yoga & Café | Alliancevej 22, 2450 Copenhagen | yum.dk