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Visit Antwerp

Antwerp – city on the Scheldt, city of Rubens, of diamonds, of fashion, a port city... The sum of all these different aspects is what makes Antwerp into a real city: a vibrant, welcoming metropolis, which is also great fun and heart-warming, with green areas where you can relax and peaceful corners. Antwerp is a veritable cultural capital, which prides itself on its impressive architecture and splendid art. Moreover, Antwerp is a fashionista's dream destination thanks to the stores of its world-renowned designers. The cafes only serve the best beers and foodies can enjoy the most delicious traditional and multicultural cuisine in the city’s restaurants. Antwerp: a pocket-sized metropolis which is sure to conquer anyone’s heart in no time at all

Tourist favorites in Antwerp

Cogels Osylei

Cogels-Osylei (1881–1914) is the architectural showpiece of the Zurenborg neighbourhood in the district of Berchem. It was named after Senator John Cogels and his wife, Josephine Osy, who owned most of the land in the street. The Antwerpers used to call it 'de Meir van Zurenborg' after the majestic promenade in the centre of the city. The variety of building styles in the neighbourhood is unique in Europe. Several renowned architects, including Joseph Bascourt, Jacques de Weert and Jules Hofman designed and built these gigantic town houses. In addition to Art Nouveau or Jugendstil this street includes examples of every possible neo-style, from neo-Gothic to neo-Byzantine. And yet, somehow, this amazing architectural patchwork seems to form one whole. In the 1960s there were plans to demolish Cogels-Osylei and the neighbouring streets and replace it with an office and apartment building. Luckily these plans never came to fruit. The entire neighbourhood has been listed since 1984 as a cityscape, as have most houses. All the houses have Flemish names: Huize Zonnebloem (The Sunflower House), De Sterre (The Star), De Mane (The Moon), De Sonne (The Sun), etc. One of the exceptions in this street are the four, almost identical neo-Baroque corner houses on the roundabout, also called 'white palaces', for which the architect drew inspiration from the Castle of Chambord in France.


Cathedral of Our Lady

The Cathedral has been dominating Antwerp's skyline with its northern spire for five centuries. Over time, however, the cathedral's appearance and interior regularly changed. As a result, this monumental edifice reflects many different styles including Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo. From the ninth to the twelfth century there was a small Chapel of Our Lady in this location; in the twelfth century a larger Roman church was built here. In 1352 the city commissioned the construction of a new church which was to be the largest Gothic church in the Low Countries. In 1521 the Church of Our Lady was completed. The intention was to build two identical spires, but after the new church largely burned down in 1533 all energy and resources were focused on restoring it in all its splendour. The completion of the second spire was thus postponed, and finally it was never built. In 1559 the Diocese of Antwerp was founded and the Church of Our Lady became a Cathedral.During the iconoclasm of 20 August 1566 the Protestants destroyed a large part of the cathedral's valuable interior. In 1794 French revolutionaries pillaged it. But the cathedral managed to rise from its ashes time and again. In 1816 several important works of art, including three masterpieces by Rubens, were returned from Paris. The cathedral's spire is 123 metres high, the tallest spire in the Benelux countries.


Grote Markt (square)

Grote Markt is the actual heart of the medieval city centre. Antwerp has had a 'Merckt' since 1310. It only became 'groot' or large in the sixteenth century when it was deemed to small as a space for trade. The vegetable sellers were allocated their own market, called 'Kleine Markt' or small market, to distinguish it from the oldest and most important market. Grote Markt is surrounded by several stunning sixteenth- and seventeenth-century guild houses. These authentic houses have been carefully restored. The other houses are nineteenth- and twentieth-century reconstructions, based on paintings and testimonials. The combination of Flemish Gothic and Italian Renaissance is typical of the Netherlands. The opulent decorations of the houses are largely due to the guilds, which expressed their wealth or power among others through their façades. The town hall, which was built between 1561 and 1564, is the most resplendent building in Grote Markt. This magnificent 'palazzo' is considered a Renaissance masterpiece. The marble façade has several pillars between the windows, statues in the niches, coats of arms and a loggia under the roof. It is a veritable treasure trove with several art treasures inside.


Central Station

In 1835 the first train from Brussels to Antwerp arrived in Antwerp in a wooden station outside the city walls, in Koningin Astridplein. This structure was replaced in 1854 by a new wooden station building near the Antwerp Zoo's current entrance: East Station. But King Leopold II felt that Antwerp deserved a more prestigious station. In 1895 Bruges-born architect Louis dela Censerie set to work. Ten years later Antwerp's Central Station was officially inaugurated. The station consists of an elevated railway bed, a covered steel platform hall and a monumental station building for services and ticket hall.Antwerp's Central Station is considered one of the most beautiful stations worldwide. Between 2000 and 2009 the monumental building was completely modernised and expanded to accommodate the high-speed rail line. More platforms were opened on two additional underground levels, an additional entrance with station hall was built in Kievitplein and space was created for shops and restaurants. The unique metal platform roof had previously been restored. In the past Antwerp Central Station was a terminus where trains had to turn around. But since 2007, trains can continue their journey thanks to the railway tunnel between Antwerp Central Station and the north of the city.


Museum Plantin-Moretus/Prints Room (interior)

Plantin-Moretus MuseumThe museum is located on the picturesque Vrijdagmarkt in the historic centre of the city. A real must see – and certainly not only restricted to visitors who have an interest in the development and the history of book publishing. Sightseeing tourists invariably put this museum at the top of their list of places to see in Antwerp.The Plantin-Moretus Museum is the continuation of the Officina Plantiniana, founded by Christoffel Plantijn in 1555, as the first industrial printing works in history. Today it constitutes the only fully equipped printing works-publishing house, which dates back to the Renaissance and Baroque Period. In 2001 Unesco granted the old company and home archives and the oldest printing presses world heritage status. This magnificent patrician house, the unique typographical treasury and the resplendent book museum were added to the World Heritage List in 2002.It is here that the Masters of the Gulden Passer (The Golden Compass) lived and worked. Visitors can still admire the original interior of the house, decorated with tapestries, gilded leather walls, paintings and sculptures. The museum also gives an educational overview of the whole book production process from the 15th to the 18th Century. End your visit in one of the many libraries of the museum or take a breath of fresh air in one of the gardens of the inner courtyard.


Great hotels in Antwerp

Hotel 't Sandt

Hôtel 't Sandt is a luxury first class hotel in the centre of Antwerp, Belgium, reflecting the historical elegance of Antwerp Old Town. Housed in a magnificently restored neo-roccoco mansion, the Hôtel 't Sandt is located directly around the corner from most of the stylish design stores, funky restaurants and the trendy South quarter. This Antwerp accommodation is perfect as a base from which exploring the numerous sightseeing attractions Antwerp has to offer: Antwerp City Hall at the Grote Markt main square, the fascinating Guildhouses, or the Het Steen Fortress are just some examples of the enchanting things to see in Antwerp. Guests booking Hôtel 't Sandt may enjoy the beautiful Italian courtyard and the Summer terrace which offers an appealing view of the Cathedral. Weather permitting it is possible to have breakfast here. An attentive staff will make sure that your stay in Antwerp will be even more unforgettable than expected. Leave your car in the on-site garage and discover on foot this incredibly beautiful city.! Wireless Internet access is included in the price. Parking is not included in the price and costs €16,00. Breakfast is included in the price. Hôtel 't Sandt is a luxury first class hotel in the centre of Antwerp, Belgium, reflecting the historical elegance of Antwerp Old Town. Housed in a magnificently restored neo-roccoco mansion, the Hôtel 't Sandt is located directly around the corner from most of the stylish design stores, funky restaurants and the trendy South quarter.

Tulip Inn Antwerpen

Location. Tulip Inn Antwerpen is located in Antwerp's Ring Road neighborhood, close to Antwerp Zoo, Rubens House, and Museum Mayer van den Bergh. Nearby points of interest also include Modemuseum and Cathedral of Our Lady. Hotel Features. Tulip Inn Antwerpen's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. The hotel serves continental breakfasts each morning in the restaurant (surcharges apply). This 3-star property offers small meeting rooms, audiovisual equipment, and business services. Complimentary wireless Internet access is available in public areas and the hotel has an Internet point. This Antwerp property has event space consisting of banquet facilities and conference/meeting rooms. Guest parking is complimentary. Additional property amenities include currency exchange, complimentary newspapers in the lobby, and an elevator (lift). This is a smoke-free property. A total renovation of this property was completed in August 2011. Guestrooms. 126 guestrooms at Tulip Inn Antwerpen feature complimentary newspapers and windows that open. Bathrooms feature handheld showerheads. They also offer makeup/shaving mirrors, complimentary toiletries, and hair dryers. Wireless Internet access is complimentary. Guestrooms offer phones. Housekeeping is offered daily and guests may request wake-up calls. The recreational activities listed below are available either on site or nearby; fees may apply.

Marjorie II

Welcome on board the Marjorie II, a unique floating accommodation in Antwerp, designed to do luxury cruising. When entering the cruise ship you're struck immediately by the well-designed interior created for luxury, elegance and spaciousness. Ideal for an overnight stop or for a long stay, this child-friendly Antwerp city guest house has all you need to make you feel at home. Ideally moored in the old port of Antwerp only 500 meters from the cathedral and from all major tourist attractions, the Marjorie II guest house is a great choice for both leisure or business travelers. Within walking distance you will find bars, restaurants and shops. Relax in the beautiful and peaceful surroundings and enjoy a stunning view from the large panoramic windows. In the elegant dinning room you will find the highest quality of French-Belgian cuisine, served on the finest china and silverware, all of witch combine for a memorable culinary experience. New bicycles are free to use as well as the outdoor Jacuzzi. Even Vespas are available to rent (driving license is required). Games and videos are also available.

Condo Gardens Antwerpen

The following fees and deposits are charged by the property at time of service, check-in, or check-out. Breakfast fee: EUR 10 per person (approximately)Pet fee: EUR 5 per pet, per day Late check-out fee: EUR 25Early check-in fee: EUR 20Crib (infant bed) fee: EUR 7 per night The above list may not be comprehensive. Fees and deposits may not include tax and are subject to change.

Best Western Hotel Docklands

Location. Best Western Hotel Docklands is located in Antwerp's The Islet neighborhood, close to Museum Aan de Stoom, Vleeshuis, and Antwerp Market Square. Nearby points of interest also include Antwerp City Hall and Cathedral of Our Lady. Hotel Features. The hotel serves buffet breakfasts each morning (surcharges apply). A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Best Western Hotel Docklands features a marina, laundry facilities, and dry cleaning/laundry services. Wireless Internet access (surcharge) is available in public areas. Additional property amenities include self parking. Self parking is complimentary. The front desk is open during limited hours. This is a smoke-free property. A total renovation of this property was completed in March 2011. Guestrooms. 38 guestrooms at Best Western Hotel Docklands feature safes and windows that open. Beds come with signature bedding, Egyptian cotton sheets, and down blankets. Bathrooms feature bathtubs or showers, complimentary toiletries, and hair dryers. Wireless Internet access is complimentary. Guestrooms offer direct-dial phones. Flat-panel televisions have cable channels. Guests may request irons/ironing boards, extra towels/bedding, and wake-up calls. A nightly turndown service is offered. The recreational activities listed below are available either on site or nearby; fees may apply.

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