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Brussels Town Hall is an intricate Gothic marvel that forms the focal point of Brussels' iconic Grand Place and is easily one of the city's most lavish civic buildings. The Town Hall was chiefly designed by two architects: the left wing by Jacques van Thienen in 1402, and the right wing by Jean van Ruysbroeck in 1445-1450. The two rear wings were added much later in 1712 but were designed in harmony with the architectural style of the original, L-shaped building. The exterior walls of the Town Hall feature numerous statues that depict saints, nobles, and other figures, each a vivid image of the people they represent. Uniting these efforts is the striking and exquisite Gothic tower at the center topped by a statue of St. Michael, the patron saint of Brussels. Inside, the elegant rooms are decorated with tapestries and paintings from the 16th, 17th and 18th Centuries. Brussels Town Hall is an arresting sight, especially when lit up at night.
The Column of Congress was designed in 1850 by architect Joseph Poelaert, who later also built the Palais de Justice. The column is 47 meters (154 feet) high, and on top there is a 25 meter (82 feet) high statue of Léopold I, the country's first king. This column was erected in commemoration of the National Congress who established the Belgian constitution in 1831. At the foot of the column is the eternal flame, in remembrance of the victims of the two World Wars. In the column itself is the grave of the Unknown Soldier. Every November 11th (Remembrance Day) there is a ceremony here in the presence of the Royal Family.
Este é um bairro tradicional de trabalhadores ocupado pelo gigante Palácio de Justiça (construído em 1866-1883, e até recentemente, o maior edifício do mundo). O Marolles agora oferece uma vasta selecção de restaurantes e de lojas de antigüidades. Restaurantes de classe conformam uma vizinhança com bares. O bairro é famoso por sua feira diária no Place du Jeu-de-Balle, a praça central, mas chegue cedo (antes da 6 da manhã) se quiser ver as verdadeiras pechinchas.
In the shadow of Grand Place, a small passageway gives access to one of the most pleasant places in the city. Rue des Bouchers is a lovely narrow street that is lined with restaurants. On display lie mussels, lobsters and oysters, all nicely decorated, awaiting hungry tourists. The restaurant doors are always open and, at the first sign of sun, tables and chairs line the alley.
Belgium's iconic Grand Place stands as a testament to the city's glorious cultural and economic legacy. Recognized as one of the most splendid market squares in Europe, its arcade is completely enclosed by tall, gabled Flemish Renaissance buildings decorated with intricate ornamentation and carved statues. Of the buildings that surround the square, the Town Hall with its Brabantine Gothic tower and the Neo-Gothic Brussels City Museum are especially remarkable. Impressive as it is by day, the square is even more stunning at night under the golden glow of street lights. During spring and summer evenings there is a light show that brings to life the city's musical and cultural heritage.
Located in the area of Ixelles, the Ixelles Ponds are a set of two ponds that make for a popular gathering place for locals. The water here is not safe for contact and so visitors are not allowed enter the pond. One can walk along the shore and enjoy the peace or enjoy the picturesque Art Nouveau houses nearby. Sit down on a bench and out look out onto the water to admire the waterfowl or enjoy a picturesque walk around the ponds.