The best streets for shopping in Brussels city centre
The best shopping Brussels has to offer
So, you’ve got your hotel in Brussels city centre sorted (Pentahotel Brussels city centre of course!) You’ve got trips to see Manneken Pis and the Atomium planned, and you’re ready to consume as many waffles, french fries, chocolate and moules as humanly possible. Naturally all washed down with a beer or two. Let’s pretend for a moment that you’re done with most of your touristy stuff, not in the mood for any more galleries or landmarks and your quest for culture has been satisfied for now. What next? Well, whilst it may not have the same reputation as some of the other major European cities, did you know that Brussels is also an underrated destination when it comes to shopping? That’s right, whether you are curious to see how an international brand or store differs from home, or you want to push the boat out and splash the cash on something a little more boutique, chances are you’ll be able to find it in Brussels, it is the Belgian capital after all.
Now, if only there was some way to find out the best shopping streets in Brussels city centre…
Ta-da! Welcome to our list of the best places to shop that Brussels has to offer. First up is Rue Neuve. The centrally located, pedestrianised street of Rue Neuve is a must for any shopaholic. With the famous department store Inno and the shopping centre City 2, which contains over 100 stores, if you need something in particular there’s a very good chance that you will find it here. If you don’t need something in particular, you’ll probably also be able to find something you want given the range of major and international brands available.
It is around 20-25 minutes away from Pentahotel Brussels city centre with public transport, but if you fancy burning off some of the inevitable calories from your Belgian stay, it is just 3km on foot.
This next one is interesting; just a stone’s throw from Chaussée de Charleroi (the street where Pentahotel Brussels City Centre is located) you will find Avenue Louise. If you decide to make the quick stroll from our place, you will be greeted by one of the fanciest shopping streets and some of the most luxurious and exclusive stores Brussels has to offer. Multiple prominent high-end brands have shops there, as do several local Belgian designers. However, if deluxe fashion and homeware isn’t your thing or you are just looking to save some cash, you can also find more casual and humble stores there as well, with the likes of Urban Outfitters and another Inno close by.
A selection of cafes and restaurants also provide the perfect opportunity to take a break and rest your weary feet mid-shop. Not only this but with its fashionistas and proximity to some of Brussels’ posher neighbourhoods, it is a great location for people-watching.
Place du Jeu de Balle flea market
Moving from the world of luxury to something a little more wallet-friendly, the Place du Jeu de Balle (also known as Vlooienmarkt Vossenplein) is a charming daily flea market that is over 150 years old. If you have no problem with buying things that are pre-loved, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to find yourself a hidden gem here. With clothing, books, vinyl’s and loads of antiques and trinkets you might have to rummage through some junk, but that’s half the fun right? When you do find something you can also feel free to haggle and try to get yourself the best bargain possible.
Another cool thing is that the market is open between 8 am and 2 pm (3 pm on weekends), 365 days a year, rain or shine it’s ever present. Also, it’s just 1.5km from our hotel in Brussels centre so you can easily make it over there in less than 20 minutes either by foot or with public transport.
This iconic shopping arcade appears on the majority of to-do and must-see lists for Brussels and with good reason. Consisting of three galleries; the King’s Gallery, the Queen’s Gallery, and the Prince’s Gallery, it is exactly as elegant and grandiose as you would expect. One of the first shopping arcades of its kind in Europe, it recently celebrated its 175th birthday. Its picturesque nature means it is worth a visit for the holiday snaps or Instagram content alone, but if you are looking to treat yourself, this is another perfect spot. Numerous jewellery shops and more high-end fashion stores can be found here, as can classy restaurants and comfortable cafes, however, what really drew us here (aside from the architecture) is the unbelievable selection of sweet treats. Multiple world-famous chocolatiers call Royal Saint-Hubert Galleries home. Not only that but you will also be able to find traditional Belgian products like pralines, cuberdons, speculoos, and waffles there too.
Our recommendation would be to grab something nice and eat it on the walk back to the Pentahotel, its only 25 minutes or so and you go past the Palais de Justice another one of Brussels most notable and important landmarks on the way.
There you have it, not only do we offer sweet accommodation in Brussels city centre, we’ve also got plenty of tips and recommendations that will really allow you to make the most of your stay. If you aren’t one for shopping (and you’ve still made it to the end of this piece) we can only advise you to chat with some of our lovely staff in the hotel itself, they’re really friendly and full of great recommendations and non web-based insider tips.