City Center – The Grand Place

Brussels History Captured by the Grand PlaceYou must have seen the Times Square of New York, even if it is virtual, and you think that’s how a public square should look like. Now come with me to the Grand Place in Brussels. You will not see modern buildings or huge LCD screens. Instead, you will see two glowering structures – Brussels Town Hall and Museum of the City of Brussels.

Brussels Town Hall

Gothic in its design, this building was constructed between 1402 and 1454 in different stages. The east wing was built between 1402 and 1420 under Jacob van Thienen.  From 1444 to 1452, a new wing was added to the town hall. In 1454 the tower replaced the old belfry.

The tower is a 96 meter or 315 feet tall structure and was designed by Jan van Ruysbroek and the court architect of Philip the Good. The architecture reflects an early 14th century Gothic style called the Brabantine Gothic.

Museum of the City of Brussels

Built in 1860 and unveiled in 1887, this museum stands right opposite the town hall. The museum features sculptures, engravings, paintings, tapestries, photos and models, which includes a prominent representation-to-scale of the town in the Middle Ages. There are two scenarios of the city of Brussels that is depicted in this museum – its early days and when it started to flourish in the 1500s.

There is such great history in these two buildings that make it worth to see. To visit Brussels, you need a Belgian Visit Visa.

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