Yesterday we went to our old city Antwerp and ate at one of my favourite places, Brasserie Gustav. The brasserie is next to the Opera house in the city centre, close to the Central Station. The place has that nostalgic feel and the friendly waiters wear long white aprons. It is spacious with French windows, large mirrors on the walls, marble columns and a high ceiling, but it looks cosy and very French. Next to it is the F. Rooseveltplaats square, which is the city's main bus station. That view isn't anything special, but it never bothers me because Gustav has a wonderful atmosphere and the food is excellent. By the way, that is my salmon sandwich and rosé in the top-right photo. Delicious.
We had thought about spending the day in either Brussels or Namur, the capital of the Wallonia region, but at the last minute we chose Antwerp.
Being spontaneous paid off. It was a beautiful day and the city looked its best. It felt like coming home, without the feeling being bittersweet in any way. I felt no regret for having left Belgium for Luxembourg.
I have to add here that the area around the Central Station hasn't exactly been my favourite area, but as we wanted to go to Gustav, that's where we went. To our wonderful surprise one side of De Keyserlei, the street that leads from the station, had already been given a facelift (photo to the right). It used to be rather unattractive, but I knew they had plans for improvement. The area for pedestrians is now much wider and the restaurant area looks so much better. Even though the other side is still under construction everything looked nice and charming.
This made my Antwerp heart very happy and I look forward to returning when they have finished.