5 x S Marks the Spots in Brussels
Sandy founder S Marks the Spots
S Marks The Spots is an ever-growing treasure map by Sandy, a lawyer by day and blogger by night dividing her time between Brussels and London. An avid foodie with an incurable case of wanderlust, Sandy documents her favourite food spots and travel destinations on her blog and Instagram. Follow her spots and discover the coolest places in Brussels and beyond!
1) San Bruxelles
After his wildly successful two Michelin-starred restaurant L’Air du Temps in the province of Namur, Sang-Hoon Degeimbre decided to open a second restaurant, only in the Belgian capital this time. San serves dishes that are more accessible price-wise while maintaining a high quality of ingredients and cooking techniques. The space is colourful, cheerful and very welcoming while the menu consists of different bowls that change depending on the season. Make sure to book in advance and be prepared for a really special meal.
2) Café Flora
A great spot in Saint-Gilles whether you’re looking for a place to catch up with friends, have drinks in the evening, people-watch on the terrace on warm days or take some great pictures for your Instagram. Café Flora is an ode to design, with different styles coming together in the best way. There are so many details that stand out, from the graphic frescoes on the ceilings and the mismatched chairs to the antique moldings, velvet touches and funky columns.
3) Museum Van Buuren
The Museum of David and Alice van Buuren in Brussels is a beautiful house off the tourist trail that’s full of little surprises. David van Buuren was a Dutch banker and art collector who settled in Brussels in 1909 and got married to Alice Piette a few years later. Their house was built in typical Amsterdam School style and is decorated with rare art deco furniture and fittings created by renowned by Belgian, Dutch and French designers of the time. The surrounding gardens are also magnificent and include a labyrinth as well as the Garden of Hearts that everyone seems to love.
4) Galerie Bortier
Designed by Jean-Pierre Cluysenaer, the architect who’s behind the well-known Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert, the arcade was named after Mr. Bortier who supported the creation of the Marché de la Madeleine/Magdalenamarkt, one of the first covered markets in Brussels which was partly housed there. The market eventually closed but Galerie Bortier retained its charm throughout the years. Nowadays Galerie Bortier hosts second-hand bookshops and an art gallery where you can score great deals if you’re up for some treasure hunting.
5) Maison Renardy
This little gem of a café is a true oasis of calm with a traditional touch. Sweets are homemade, coffee is served on a silver platter and guests are welcomed by the friendly owners. Located close to the Matongé area, Maison Renardy was founded in 1912 and has remained a family-run business ever since. Their hot chocolate and handmade pralines are excellent and so is the selection of tea. A great spot to unwind and treat yourself off the beaten path.
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The 500 Hidden Secrets of Brussels reveals off-the-beaten-track places and interesting details for anyone who's keen to explore Brussel's best-kept secrets.
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