Best areas to stay in Brussels - Top districts and hotels

Best areas to stay in Brussels – Top districts and hotels

What you need to know about the best areas to stay in Brussels

Brussels, the “capital of Europe” is a charming place that offers travelers excellent food, fascinating art collections and thriving alternative neighborhoods where emerging designers and bohemian artists exhibit their creations.

This Belgian city has a wide range of things to do. It is not a big city, so finding the best area to stay in Brussels is easier than in other capitals such as Madrid or Berlin.

The top area to stay in Brussels is, without a doubt, around Grand Place square, in the old district of the city. However, hotels here are usually quite expensive. A night in a three star hotel in this area can set you back €90 or more.

Being a world-class political and business capital, the cost of accommodation in Brussels can be very high, although you can find interesting offers in peripheral neighborhoods.

Fortunately, there are many charming neighborhoods that are central and still cheap, for example Molenbeek.

This is a small guide with the best areas to stay in Brussels, so your stay in the Belgian capital can be perfect.

1. Best Area: Brussels Centrum

The Historic District of Brussels comprises the central area of the city and is, as expected, the most interesting area to stay in the city.

Packed with people and things to do day and night;, restaurants, bars and entertainment venues, it is in this area where most of the attractions the capital has to offer are located.

Brussel’s icons such as the Grand Place, the Stock Exchange Palace, the Manneken Pis and the beautiful Galeries St. Hubert are all located in Brussels Centrum.

In this neighborhood you can walk almost everywhere; museums, attractions and landmarks are within reach.

Hand-picked hotels in this area

MORE HOTELS IN THE AREA

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Area Rating:

Best area to stay in Brussels: Centrum

Best area to stay in Brussels: Centrum

Central Brussels - Click to see all hotels on a map

Central Brussels – Click to see all hotels on a map

Why stay here:

  • Grand Place
  • Impressive museums
  • Manneken Pis
  • Close to all attractions
  • Connected by metro
 

 

 

2. Ixelles

This colorful neighborhood, south of central Brussels, is considered one of the most affluent in the Belgian capital.

This is the birthplace of famous artists such as the Argentine writer Julio Cortázar or the famous international actress Audrey Hepburn.

Boulevard de Louise and Waterloo are full of shops and restaurants. The area near the Porte de Namour station is home to a large African community.

Ixelles is a very central district connected by metro.

The area near the Louise station is the closest to the centre and you can walk to the Grande Place in 15 minutes.

Its cobbled small streets and garden squares are full of charm and history.

Hand-picked hotels in this area

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Area Rating:

Alojarse en Bruselas - Ixelles

Where to stay in Brussels – Ixelles

Alojamiento en Ixelles - Click to see all hotels on a map

Ixelles – Click to see all hotels on a map

Why stay here:

  • Excellent shopping area
  • Connected by metro
  • Charming little streets
  • Shops and galleries
  • Restaurants and nightlife
 

 

 

3. Saint-Gilles

Saint Gilles is also located south of the centre of Brussels.

It has an artistic flair to it. St Gilles is very popular among the student population of Brussels and mixes an eclectic cultural background.

This neighborhood has some of the best cheap bars and restaurants in the city.

Saint Gilles has two different faces. The area around Brussels-Midi/Zuid train station is more working-class and multicultural, while the southern area, bordering Ixelles, is full of regal properties and Art Nouveau mansions, some designed by Horta and his disciples.

Hand-picked hotels in this area

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Area Rating:

Alojarse en Saint Gilles - Bruselas

Best areas to stay in Brussels – Saint Gilles

Saint Gilles

Saint Gilles – Click to see all hotels on a map

Why stay here:

  • CCentral and well connected
  • Young atmosphere
  • Great nightlife
  • Cheap accommodation
  • Connected by metro and train
 

 

 

4. European Quarter

Brussel’s European Quarte is located east of the city centre.

It is the business area par excellence of the city and it hosts a large number of EU institutions, as well as the headquarters of major international companies such as Google. Among its attractions are the Cinquantenaire Park, the Brussels Park and the Royal Palace.

The European Quarter is one of the most elegant and coveted areas to stay in Brussels, so hotels in the area tend to be on the pscale side. However, there are more budget B&B and small hotel options as well.

The area is connected by the metro system.

Hand-picked hotels in this area

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Area Rating:

Best area to stay in Brussels - European Quarter

Best area to stay in Brussels – European Quarter

European Quarter - Click to see all hotels on a map

European Quarter – Click to see all hotels on a map

Why stay here:

  • Beautiful parks
  • EU institutions
  • Royal Palace
  • Luxury hotels
  • Connected by metro
 

 

 

5. Molenbeek – Saint Jean

The district of Molenbeek – Saint Jean in Brussels is located to the west of the city.

It is a traditionally Muslim and working-class district that in recent years has gone through an important process of urban renewal and gentrification to become one of the most alternative and vibrant neighborhoods in the Belgian capital.

Molenbeek is not far from the centre and is connected by trams. Although it is not the most attractive or elegant district of Brussels, the prices of accommodation in this area are the lowest in the city.

Molenbeek is also full of backpackers hostels.

Hand-picked hotels in this area

MORE HOTELS IN THE AREA

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Area Rating:

Alojarse en Bruselas - Molenbeek

Best districts to stay in Brussels – Molenbeek

Molenbeek - St Jean - Click to see all hotels on a map

Molenbeek – St Jean – Click to see all hotels on a map

Why stay here:

  • Very central
  • Connected by trams
  • Ethnic food
  • Cheap hotels
  • Alternative atmosphere
 

 

 

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About the Author

My name is Luis Cicerone. When I was little, I would walk around the house with an atlas in my hand. My rainy Sundays were spent memorising maps and capitals. At fifteen I did my first solo trip and since then I travel whenever I can. I work in travel marketing. I love photography, movies and cat videos.

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