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Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

SAS Crew Tips: Brussels

Many people think of Brussels as merely the administrative heart of the EU - but purser Paal Ole Sand knows there's another, tastier side to this beautiful city.

"Why I love Brussels? It’s a haven for those of us who really appreciate the good life – good food, beer, chocolate and cakes. It’s also ­unpretentious and laid-back, and right in the very heart of Europe", says Paal Ole Sand, purser at SAS. Here are his favourite places in Brussels.

 

Au Bon Vieux Temps

A well-kept secret, just a short stroll from Grand Place, you'll find this stunning bar dating back to 1695. The interior is gorgeous. The bar concentrates on Trappist beers produced in monasteries across Belgium. Be sure to try the world-famous Westvleteren 12, voted the best beer in the world in 2015.

Au Bon Vieux Temps

Impasse Saint-Nicolas 4

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Photo: Toucan Sur Mer

Toucan Sur Mer

The impeccable quality, service and freshness of the fish and seafood make this place a must on your next visit to Brussels. As this lovely seafood bistro only has a limited number of seats, making a table reservation is highly recommended. An absolutely stunning place for seafood lovers.

Toucan Sur Mer

Avenue Louise Lepoutre 17

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Photo: Aux Armes de Bruxelles

Aux Armes de Bruxelles

Locals and tourists are pampered with the best seafood available in this elegant eatery in the old town. Try the sole meunière - fish with butter and lemon - or one of the many classic moules frites varieties.

Aux Armes de Bruxelles

Rue de Bouchers 13

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Wittamer & Grand Sablon

Belgium is a paradise for beer lovers but its selection of cafés and chocolatiers is equally amazing. In and around the Grand Sablon square, you'll find some of Brussels - and the world's - absolute best chocolate makers. My personal favorite is Wittamer, but you'll also find famous brand names such as Neuhaus, Godiva and Pierre Marcolini.Every Saturday and Sunday there's an antique market in this square, and there's no better way to spend your day in the Belgium capital than indulging yourself in a delicious chocolate truffle and a freshly brewed espresso.

Wittamer & Grand Sablon

Place du Grand Sablon 6-12-13

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Poechenellekelder

Just across from the world famous Manneken Pis sculpture, you'll find this fantastic little bar with an extensive selection of beers. It's a perfect place for drinks and light snacks. The one-of-a-kind ambience, funny interior - it has puppet figures hanging from the ceiling, and a lovely outdoors patio, make this bar one of my Brussels favorites.

Poechenellekelder

Rue du Chéne 5

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Photo: A la Mort Subite

A la Mort Subite

The fourth generation of the Vossens family serves a variety of Mort Subite lambics - a type of beer brewed in the Brussels region - and other Belgian beers. Great location, with a flair of a bygone time. Established in 1928, and one of my favorite waterholes in the Belgian capital. The name translates as "a sudden death" and comes from a card game that was once played on these premises.

A la Mort Subite

Rue Montagne aux Herbes, Potageres 7

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Thon Hotel Bristol Stephanie

Set on Avenue Louise, amid some of the finest shopping in Brussels. This hotel has generously sized rooms, personal service and great value for the money. Try a lush cocktail at the bar, prepared by head barman Sinan.

Thon Hotel Bristol Stephanie

Avenue Louise 91-93

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