July 27, 2016

Thermae Palace Hotel and Brasserie Albert in Ostende

How wonderful to see old buildings preserved and institutions  from the past coming back to life again. Brasserie Albert on the ground floor of the  Thermae Palace hotel in Ostend is a perfect example. A little history on this hotel:
"One of the many projects of King Leopold II was the construction of a large thermal institute against the colonnade that he had built at the beginning of the century. In 1929 the plans of the French architects Flegenheimer, Bard and Garella together with those of AndrĂ© Daniels, architect from Ostend, for this so-called “Badenpaleis” (“Thermal Palace”) were approved of. The “Badenpaleis” had everything a health and spa resort needed, including a Turkish bath, mud baths and massage rooms. A swimming pool and a luxurious hotel with various conference rooms were also erected. In 1933 the majestic Thermae Palace Hotel, in Art Deco style, was officially opened by King Albert I and Queen Elisabeth. Because of the unique combination of mineral water and seawater this health resort grew into one of the most important spas of the whole of Europe. Numerous noble families and even the shah and his retinue came to Ostend to try out the healing effects of the thermal baths.The  “Thermaal Instituut” (“Thermal Institute”) suffered a lot from World Word II. After the war it was reopened as “Badenpaleis” (“Thermal Palace”) and hotel. In the beginning of the eighties the “Thermaal Instituut” was gradually run down. During the nineties the unique complex was completely renovated and the new Thermae Palace saw the light of day."http://www.thermaepalace.be/en/hotel

July 21, 2016

Happy July 21!

It was on 21 July 1831 that Leopold of Saxe-Coburg swore allegiance to the Belgian constitution and took the constitutional oath as the first King of Belgium. 
Today we celebrate the national holiday and this year I want to add a special message of hope and peace.  May the day be happy, peaceful and fun for all.

July 07, 2016

Averbode, the abbaye, history, tranquility and harmony

 "The abbey of Averbode was founded in 1134. Since then the courtyard has undergone many changes. Around 1800, the square evolves towards the configuration it has today with the church, the abbots quarters, the presbytery and the gatehouse as the surrounding buildings. In the very beginning the arrangement of the courtyard is limited to three slim cobble stone paths and a lawn. Later, the use of the area increases due to a larger number of visitors and the organization of activities in and around the square. In 1976, the primarily green square transforms into a practical, stone space which is more and more predominated by vehicles. The bad condition of the pavement, the parking habits of visitors and the renewed demand for tranquility and simplicity, all lead to the decision in 2010 to rebuild the square"    www.landezine.com   
Today, tourists can enjoy beer, cheese, and much more in a serene setting ..time to return for a visit.