Stordalen said this week that his Nordic Choice Hotels will invest 880 Danish kroner (roughly one billion Norwegian kroner) in the project, which in addition to taking over the Hilton includes building a brand-new 500-room hotel near the airport.
The move comes just months after the flamboyant businessman purchased the former Post Danmark building in the heart of the Danish capital with plans to convert it into a luxury hotel.
Stordalen will control 882 rooms at the Copenhagen Airport. The existing 382-room Hilton will be converted to a Clarion Hotel in April and the new hotel will operate under the Comfort banner.
“For a hotel guy like myself, Copenhagen is a dream. Travel-wise, it is one of Europe’s most popular capitals,” Stordalen told Berlingske Business from Denmark when he made his investment announcement. “It’s fantastic the way people are so positive in their reactions to Copenhagen. People want to live here.”
While Stordalen may be a relatively new name in Denmark, he’s well known in both Norway and Sweden thanks to his penchant for creating headlines through outlandish ideas like suggesting that Denmark, Norway and Sweden should unite into one large country.
“About 10 million people live in Sweden. In Norway and Denmark, five million each. Twenty million would have been even better when it comes to selling cars, airplanes, or innovation,” he told Swedish daily Göteborgs Posten last year. “Think about what a fantastic country we would have been together.”
In 2015, Stordalen courted controversy by banning Scandinavian staples sausages and bacon from the menu at his hotel chain, before making a complete U-turn following complaints a week later. At the height of the 2015 refugee influx in Scandinavia, the billionaire offered 5,000 nights in his hotel chain to refugees who do not have a spot in asylum centres.
Last summer, he hit the headlines after falling off a jet ski as he arrived to open a new luxury hotel in Malmö, Sweden.