Discover Benelux, Issue 44, August 2017

Page 24

Discover Benelux  |  Antwerp  |  Top Food, Drink & Sleep Spots


Putting the guest at the centre of attention takes quite a literal meaning at U Eat & Sleep Antwerp. This brand new gem on Het Eilandje in Antwerp has brought the experience of sleeping, eating and enjoyment all under one roof, combining design hotel rooms, three different food experiences and the most beautiful sun terrace of the city into one place, where everything is possible. Luxurious yet accessible, cosy yet trendy, international yet Antwerp-worthy: U feels very much unlike anything else in Flanders. Rather than focusing on one element, the hotel turned restaurant (or restaurant turned hotel) provides a full experience of sleeping, eating, relaxing, and even working - depending on one’s expectations. If you were not obliged to go out and explore beautiful Antwerp, you would not want to leave. 24  |  Issue 44  |  August 2017

U meet “U-Antwerp puts the focus on ‘you’,” begins co-owner Hans Otten. “U is a place to meet and experience, whether you are on a business trip or honeymoon.” This philosophy is translated into U’s ambiance. Instead of finding yourself in a hotel that happens to host a restaurant (or vice-versa), U excels in all: accessibility, openness and luxury. U is helmed by chef Viki Geunes and media personality Hans Otten. Meeting eight years ago during the recordings of the TV programme Het Hotel Westende their friendship has evolved from exclusively private to professional as well, with U as the result of their mutual dream and vision. “Both Viki and me – Viki as a culinary expert and myself as a TV presenter – frequently travel to other countries. We both have had a sufficient taste of other countries and therefore noticed what Flanders

was missing in terms of hospitality. In international cities such as London, New York and Barcelona there is a strong focus on hotels and restaurants that provide one full experience, rather than focusing on one strength.”