Silent Knowledge


October 10–12, 2018



Copenhagen, Denmark



In a sea of noise and data to be cultivated and mined, we celebrate intelligence that sings in silence—implicit wisdom that cannot be analyzed or replicated. As we look back on 25 years of Design Hotels™ and celebrate the future ahead, let’s consider the Silent Knowledge that has always been and will remain our animating force. At Arena*, we explored the changing nature of our environment with an eye to the future, teasing out various strategies and forms of understanding that can move us instinctively ahead.

Consistently measured among the world’s most livable cities, Copenhagen is an epicenter of innovative design, forward-thinking urbanism, and contemporary culture. Where better, then, to envision the future and look ahead at what’s to come for our community of creative hoteliers? This year’s Arena* was especially meaningful, because it marked the 25th anniversary of Design Hotels™—a quarter century of pioneering design and original experiences. What began in 1993 as a radical vision of what a hotel could be is now a remarkable global movement that’s changed the face of hospitality. How can we continue to blaze a trail, to think two steps ahead, to offer our community extraordinary new experiences and aesthetic environments?

The Conference

Thought leaders in business, technology, academia, publishing, hospitality, and beyond came to Arena* to celebrate and stress the value of Silent Knowledge. At a time when experience can be undervalued and data can be mistaken for knowledge, our presenters expounded upon the importance of implicit wisdom—intelligence that sings in silence.

Speakers & Artists at Arena* 2018

This year’s inspiring panel of experts, speakers, and artists explored the changing nature of our environment, teasing out various strategies and forms of understanding that can move us instinctively ahead.



On the Attribute of a Good City


Your Arena* Digital Companion

Thanks to Porter & Sail’s industry-leading mobile concierge app, Arena* attendees will once again have access to the wisdom and tips of discerning, sophisticated city residents. Where does Michelin-starred chef Christian Puglisi like to go for serious laidback eats and drinks (when he’s not manning one of his five Copenhagen eateries)? What are the favorite galleries of design-insider Chris Pedersen? Where are the Hygge Town hotspots that locals prefer? What about the fave hangouts of DJ-Producer Kasper Bjorke? These and many other in-the-know tips can help you experience the Copenhagen scene like a true local. And beyond its many recommendations, the Porter & Sail app will also tell you everything you need to know about your hotel and its surroundings, as well as all the Arena* events and activities.


Simply download to your smartphone and go!


October 10, 2018

Welcome Cocktail at

A museum, library, and research center, Copenhagen’s Glyptoteket is home to ancient objets d’art, as well as to a stunning central-courtyard Winter Garden covered in glass, with palms, fountains, and sculptures – the perfect spot to kick-off this year’s Arena*.




October 11 & October 12, 2018

Conference at the
Royal Danish Academy of Music

A powerhouse on the classical music world stage, RDAM presents concerts in a stunning setting, as well as offering study programs led by several of the greatest names in music. Its classic Danish design environment was home to both Arena* conference days.



October 11, 2018

Dinner & Party at
Copenhagen Contemporary

Set in a post-industrial landmark, Copenhagen Contemporary is the Danish capital’s newly-reopened art center and plays host to works from world-renowned contemporary artists. Here, Arena* attendees came together for a night of shared meals, toasts, mystic sounds, and a boisterous celebration. 



October 12–14, 2018

Arena* Owners Weekend

This year’s Owners Weekend brought together many of our Originals to share ideas, get inspired, and grow even closer bonds over a program of unique dinner experiences, private gallery visits, tours of local design studios, and many more authentic Copenhagen experiences.