Djernes & Bell has Transformed Dinesen Showroom in the Historic Mejlborg Building

The Danish brand Garde Hvalsøe, renowned for its high-quality kitchens and cabinetry, and Dinesen, a producer of high-end plank floorings, have collaborated on a transformative scale. Their joint showroom in Aarhus, Denmark, is a testament to their perfect synergy. Here, the elegance of Garde Hvalsøe kitchens and furniture is accentuated by the quality craftsmanship of Dinesen plank floors. The showroom, redesigned in partnership with Copenhagen-based architectural studio Djernes & Bell, is not just a typical showroom. It's a hybrid space that celebrates community and collaboration, extending its functionality beyond expectations.

The showroom, which covers 600 m2 and opened in 2018, is divided into two wings, with various spaces and a basement of another world. (Mejlborg Basement is a chapter of its own.) Bunn Studio redesigned the left wing in 2022, and in 2024, Djernes & Bell thoughtfully reworked the right wing. The new design, Ecology of a Home, celebrates the building’s Gothic Renaissance origins and its surrounding historical Nørre Stenbro area.

"With Ecology of a Home, we wanted to celebrate the transformative crafts connecting our homes to the surrounding landscapes. The care and tradition that enable the almost alchemic metamorphosis from seed to cabinetry provide a powerful narrative for our ecological connectedness. The tree - the forester - the craftsman, and the generations that wear in the floorboards or kitchen through use and care are all joined. Making is a collective and anthropological act. Together, we constantly make our environments through cycles of use and repair”.

- Justine Bell and Jonas Djernes

The Mejlborg building, a historical gem constructed in 1898, has undergone several transformations over the years, yet it has retained its original architectural features. The ornamental glass ceiling and colourful glass windows, typical examples of Victorian-era ornamentation and decoration, have been preserved. These materials, widely used during the Victorian era, have been championed again in the showroom's redesign, adding a touch of nostalgia and authenticity to the space.

Mejlborg's showroom redesign draws inspiration from each room's historical setting and original usage. The showcase highlights three transformative crafts through three typical home rooms. Each room is narrated through a unique craft that represents a particular theme.

The first room to enter in the right wing is the Salon, welcoming you through tailored, transparent curtains in fabric by Kvadrat and Stilling. To provide a perfect setting for people to gather, share ideas, and collaborate, Djernes & Bell added an asymmetric spatial room divider surrounding a cosy meeting area with a handcrafted round table and chairs from Magnus Olesen. The bespoke curved room divider is made of Dinesen Douglas and finished with Ash Oil. In the Salon, there's a tribute to the Kabinet design by Garde Hvalsøe, which takes inspiration from traditional Chinese cabinets used to display and safeguard valuable tableware.



The Kitchen features a Hoelgaard model by Garde Hvalsøe, partially designed by Djernes & Bell. The floors are made of Dinesen Ash Natural and finished with Light Oil. A round kitchen island with a leather top by Sørensen Leather is the room's centrepiece. Wooden panels crafted from Dinesen Douglas wood and finished with Ash Oil line the walls of the Kitchen.

The Pantry was designed with the renowned Danish restaurant Moment which supplied dried groceries and fermentation products. The walls and floor are Dinesen Ash with a dark Clay Oil finish, and the doorway is Douglas wood with an Ash Oil finish.



Drawing inspiration from Louis Kahn's Phillips Exeter Academy Library in New Hampshire, Djernes & Bell have designed a Study Room area with bespoke wooden workhouses with gables to match the library's asymmetric design. The Study Room is primarily used as an office for both brands and displays Dinesen Curated Widths in Oak Classic/Natural with a Light Oil finish. It features Douglas seating booths finished with Dinesen Clay Oil.

Many local designers decorated the showroom. Alexander Kirkeby, based in Aarhus, designed the beautiful glass artworks. Sarah Mirkhani crafted the ceramic works. The chairs are part of the 8000 series, a design icon produced by Magnus Olesen. The lamps are from the Scandinavian lighting house Wästberg, and the stone details between the door thresholds to each room are by Surface.

The walls and ceilings are painted with various colours from the environmentally friendly waterborne paint brand, File under Pop. This colour scheme matched the glass ceiling, creating a calming interior.




Hans Peter Dinesen, 5th generation and Brand Director

"With a community-driven ethos, we wanted to invite local artists and creative people to have a platform in this shared space. By offering leverage for their art craft to be showcased, the showroom hopes to provide a platform to local talent, which returns the building to its original roots as a community hub for the citizens of Aarhus in 1898.”

Hans Peter Dinesen, 5th generation and Brand Director

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