Discover Benelux, Issue 31, July 2016

Page 51

Discover Benelux | Antwerp | Top food, drink & sleep spots

Exceptionally classy guesthouse TEXT: KOEN GUIKING | PHOTOS: JVR108

Everything is perfect about the sophisticated guesthouse JVR108 in Antwerp. Guests have called their stayed here “magical”, “a divine experience”, “charming and first class”. Their reviews are peppered with superlatives to describe the exceptional hospitality of the hosts, the impeccable, sumptuously decorated rooms and the delicious breakfast. Why stay anywhere else? “We have always wanted to be in the hospitality business,” explain hosts Philip Ver Hoeye and Frederik Aers. Three years ago they turned their dream into reality: a beautiful historic building on 108 Jan Van Rijswijcklaan (hence the name JVR108), which was completely renovated with nothing less than top-quality products. “We brought in the newest technology when it comes to air conditioning, heating and so on, but all the restorations were done with respect

of the architectural features of the inside of the house,” says Ver Hoeye. Their home on the leafy, upmarket avenue near Antwerp Expo now contains three magnificent guest apartments and is stylishly decorated throughout. All the rooms have marble bathrooms, equipped with a bathtub and rain shower and supplied with bath and body fragrances from Floris London. The luxurious, comfortable Italian beds are set every morning with clean, soft bed linen; and a warm, homely feel is created with a mix of selected antiques and modern furniture. “The decorative cushions are from our own collection. Home decoration is another one of our passions,” Ver Hoeye says. Before heading to town, guests can have a luscious breakfast in the lounge. “On a sunny day, we can also serve it in the garden,” says the ever-convivial host.

Ultimate relaxation in vibrant Antwerp TEXT: XANDRA BOERSMA | PHOTOS: RAMADA PLAZA ANTWERP

If you do not know what you want from your weekend in Antwerp, the Ramada Plaza Antwerp hotel can help you make up your mind. Whether you want to enjoy city life, work out, or discover beautiful nature in the adjoining Hertogenpark. A little bit of peace and quiet; that is the Ramada Plaza Antwerp. Located on the edge of Antwerp’s city centre, practically inside the beautiful Hertogenpark, you will find the perfect activity for every-body. “We have newly renovated fitness and sauna facilities. There is free Wi-Fi if you want to do some work and a great bistro to enjoy an aperitif after work, one of our tasty dishes, or just a drink,” sales manager Nathalie Draaijer explains. The most important activity in a hotel is sleep, which you can do in one of the contemporary rooms. “Some of the largest in Antwerp,” says Draaijer. “You can choose a deluxe, executive or family room. And our

latest offerings are a studio and an apartment.” These opened last year and are ideal for longer stays. Hip and trendy, there is a Scandinavianstyle room with a kitchenette and lounge area. A personal approach is very important to the Ramada team. “We make sure we recognise our guests,” Draaijer says. “We know which floor they prefer their room to be on, what tonic they like with their gin. Personal service is what makes the difference in our eyes.” No wonder guests refer to them as the “closest thing to family”.

Issue 31 | July 2016 | 51