With roots back to the 12th century, La Grand-Place is a cobbled square that is hidden away in Brussels with only 6 small alleys connecting it to the rest of the city. The square features a city hall that is dated in the 15th century, along with a selection of guildhalls from the late 17th century with stunning architecture.
Today, there is a variety of delightful cafes to visit, weekly flower markets to check out, and holiday fairs for visitors to enjoy while gazing at the historic buildings.
The Hotel de Ville
The Hotel de Ville, otherwise known as the town hall, is the highlight of La Grand-Place square with its Gothic architecture. Being the oldest building in the square, the town hall features an ancient bell tower with archangel Michael overlooking everything from the top in the form of a statue.
Today, visitors can take a guided tour through this building with endless chandeliers that will bring them back to a time almost forgotten.
Maison du Roi
Maison du Roi, or the King’s House, is another elaborate Gothic building that was first built in the 16th century and renovated in the 19th century. It used to be owned by the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire and the Spanish Empire, Charles V.
Today it is the home of the City Museum of Brussels with a collection of 16th century paintings and Mannekin Pis’ wardrobe, which are outfits for the little bronze statue of a boy urinating into a fountain right by Grand Place.
MAISON DES DUCS DE BRABANT
Maison des Ducs de Brabant, translated as The House of the Dukes of Brabant, is one large building that features seven homes. Some of these houses were used as guildhalls, such as for carpenters and tanners, along with a shop for chips.
Victor Hugo, one of the most famous French writers of all time, also lived in one of these houses. This building features an ornate façade with golden seals of the guilds that were housed here.
LE ROY D’ESPAGNE
Le Roy d’Espagne is the best bar to go to in La-Grand Place with great views overlooking the square and a variety of delicious Belgian beer to choose from. The building that this tavern is located in has the King of Belgium in the 17th century featured on the façade.