The 5 most unusual cafes
1) Books & Brunch
Tabitha Ackaert and Jos Deroo have created a relaxed secondhand bookstore where they also serve healthy food and good coffee. You find thousands of books on pale green shelves, including an assortment of English books in an upstairs room. The owners have also created a little playroom for kids at the back with cute toadstool chairs.
One of the coolest spots in Bruges, Hermanus was originally a cluttered shop filled with motorcycles, engine parts and biker gear. The owners, Andy and Evy, added a cafe with exposed brick walls, vintage chairs and old motorcycle photos. And then in the winter of 2018 they moved to a larger location in the suburbs. But they have kept the relaxed mood of their ‘caffeine and gasoline store’.
3) Exceller Bikes
A specialised bike shop in the centre of Bruges where you can order a customised bike or get a quick repair done to a Brompton folding bike. The store also sells distinctive Belgian cycling jerseys, Brooks saddles and hip bike accessories. You can also drop in for a coffee served with a bowl of biscuits, or sit outside at a little round table with a craft beer from Brussels Beer Project.
4) Yesterday’s World
A cramped little bar with a list of 65 bottled beers on the menu along with tapas to nibble. But it is also an antique shop where you can buy the little round table where you are seated, or pick up an antique ornament to take home. Look out for occasional concerts in this space.
The eccentric Willy Retsin has furnished a crumbling former Masonic Lodge with a bizarre collection of symbolist paintings, dusty books and quirky statues. He opens it on Sunday evenings to allow guests to wander through the cluttered rooms, spill out into the overgrown garden and drink a rum cocktail.
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