Host Story: Exploring The Hidden Gems of Brussels
Dec. 25 2021
by Lachlan

Host Story: Exploring The Hidden Gems of Brussels

Without further ado, we bring you Bram and Ali, two passionate misterb&b hosts from bustling Brussels! They are proud Belgians who are even prouder of their city. Bram and Ali love welcoming LGBTQ travelers from across the globe, so they can aquaint them with some of the city's best hidden gems: brunch spots and nightlife hangouts a given! Read their story now, and be inspired for your next adventure to Belgium.


What does hosting for the gay community mean to you?

For us, it’s very important that people can be who they are. In many countries it’s still difficult to be part of an LGBTQ community. In the past 20 years, we have seen a lot of countries becoming increasingly open towards LGBTQ people and LGBTQ rights, but this is unfortunately not yet the case everywhere in the world. Our mission is for everybody to feel at home in Brussels and in our house. We love hosting people from all over the world and getting to see new inspiring cultures.

Why did you become hosts?

We are quite the travelers ourselves. We prefer staying in houses instead of hotels, as it makes us feel less like a tourist and more like a local. A few years ago we moved to Belgium’s most exciting city, Brussels. We moved into a two-bedroom apartment and decided to put the extra bedroom on misterbnb. We haven’t regretted it at all!

In your opinion what attracts guests to your city?

Brussels is a very vibrant and international city. We are more than just beer, chocolates and frites, although you definitely have to try all of this! As the capital of Belgium and the center of Europe, there is always something to do. Whether you like going to museums, having great food at some of the city’s amazing restaurants, or partying till the sun rises, everyone will find something fun to do. Also, its central location makes it very easy to travel around to other beautiful places in Belgium. So take the train and visit one of the cute medieval cities like Bruges or Ghent. Go shopping in Antwerp or discover the lovely nature and villages of the Ardennes

What is your best memory of a guest?

Our first guest was such a nice guy. He came to Brussels to do a course,and he ended up staying here for two weeks. We showed him the Brussels nightlife, and walked around the city during the day. It was a really nice first experience, and it felt like we had known him for ages already. Due to Covid-19, it’s been a while since we have welcomed guests to our home, however last week, we were finally able to host a super fun couple. It’s so nice to be able to host again!


Do you feel more involved with the LGBTQ community since you started hosting?

Definitely, a big part of a tourist trip to Brussels is to experience the city’s nightlife. Since we started hosting, we spend more time there for sure. While you won’t find us in the gay bars every weekend, we are still thrilled to show our guests the amazing gay nightlife of the city when they stay.

Describe your perfect day in Brussels

Waking up slowly and after a nice shower you head to the city for a nice brunch. We have so many nice brunch places here. This is really one of the things we love doing. After your brunch, go for a walk in the center. The must-see is definitely the Grand Place, a UNESCO world heritage site. You will be amazed by all the nice gold leafed guild houses, each telling its own story. Take one of the side streets that bring you to the greatest smallest national monument on the planet, the Manneken Pis. If you are still hungry, you can try one of the waffles there.

After a relaxing stroll, climb the Mont des Arts and enjoy the most beautiful view over the city. Once there, choose one or more museums to visit. We have the world famous Magritte museum, the Music Instrument Museum, and of course the BelVue museum where you can find out more about the history of Belgium, and its key role in establishing a modern democracy.

Go sit in the Royal Park and read a book. If it’s a weekday, you might see some of Belgium's politicians crossing the park. A lot of important buildings are situated around this park. From the Royal Palace – which opens its doors in summer for free – to the federal parliament building. For dinner, go somewhere outside of the center. The Brussels region consists of 19 municipalities that all have their own character. Go to the Parvis de Saint-Gilles, a beautiful square full of restaurants and nice bars. Or head to Saint-Boniface, which offers a lovely view of a church on a little square. After dinner, go to ‘the gay street’, which is full of little gay bars. The streets get quite full during the weekends. This is a great way to start your night. Brussels has a lot of famous parties throughout the year! Party till late and then of course, you can be reassured you will have a nice sleep at our place.


How has hosting impacted your life?

The social aspect has been the most important one.  Hosting people has expanded our friendship group. It gives you such a nice feeling that your guests can become friends. It’s so rewarding traveling around the world and meeting up with them! 

Give us 3 reasons why you recommend hosting on misterb&b

1) It’s a great way to meet new people! You get to meet people who you will stay in touch with way after they’ve left your apartment.

2) The feeling of helping people: You know your city better than your guests (on most occasions), which means you can help them with all their needs and questions.

3) Showing your guests the hidden gems: It’s always nice to show your guests the places tourists don’t know about. Whether it’s a restaurant or a nice place to visit, you can amaze your guests with your insider knowledge. 


Why should a guest stay with you?

We offer you a nice room with a double bed in a newly-built apartment. On sunny days, our balcony is definitely the perfect escape after a hectic day exploring the city. We are always up for a nice chat in our living room! If you need any tips about the city, just ask us because we are here to help. Our apartment is very well located in a quiet street, yet it’s super close to the city center. It’s close to the metro, tram and bus lines, so you can reach the other side of the city in no time. 


Loved this? Discover more of our hosts on our dedicated Host Story page and make new connections. 

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