The bar in the August was once a chapel

Antwerp has a new and original boutique hotel called August in the very heart of the Jewish quarter.

Housed within five heritage-listed structures, the 44-room property is quite unique embodying a celebration of history and Flemish culture. Set in the former nuns’ living quarters, almost no room is quite alike. Each offers views over the hotel’s gardens or Antwerp’s distinctive cityscape, and the suites lead out onto terraces overlooking the chapel, courtyard and pond.

What the previous occupants would have made of it we are not sure but the stunning bar and lounge are set in the former nuns’ private chapel. There is a spa with an outdoor swimming pool, and an elegant guest library.

“When you restore a building, you have to do it with respect. We have to consider the past as being a beautiful gift,” explained Belgian architect Vincent Van Duysen. Soaring wooden ceilings, arched windows and restored patterned floor tiles frame pared-down interiors, which are defined by the use of desaturated colours augmented by a few well-chosen statement design pieces.

By Malcolm Ginsberg
Editor in Chief
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