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Hi - I'm moving to Brussels for six months on a work placement and have been put into a studio in some place called Etterbeek. All the guides I read say its a very dull area of Brussels wihtout much going on. Is the city centre the best place to locate for young people? thanx

Brussels, Belgium
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30,884 posts
3 reviews
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1. Re: Etterbeek

Guidebooks are intended for tourists, and indeed there aren't many "sights" in Etterbeek apart from the Cinquantenaire museums, so of course they are going to recommend that tourists concentrate on the centre where the Grand' Place is. However, for one thing it doesn't sound as though you want to spend your 6 months here sight-seeing, and for another, all the communes are much too large to generalise, they all contain a mixture of "quartiers".

I don't understand what the problem is, anyway. The main student area of Brussels is the commune of Ixelles (1050), which contains both the VUB and ULB so no lack of young people there, and this is right next to Etterbeek (1040): Etterbeek railway station is actually in Ixelles. Also, I don't know whether you realise quite how small the city is: population is only 1 Mio and the fact that most communes are well-served by public transport (Uccle however has no metro, they thought it would bring in the riff-raff..). From Mérode metro station, which is in Etterbeek, it is only 7 stops to De Brouckère, which is the city centre. Perhaps you also don't realise that while there are plenty of bars and cafés areound the St. Géry and St. Jacques areas near the Bourse, a) that doesn't necessarily make these good places to live; b) you can get there from anywhere else in town; c) there are plenty of other areas with bars and cafés e.g. around Place Flagey, Place St. Boniface and Place du Châtelain (Ixelles); and d) discothèques and clubs are not clustered in the city centre but dispersed around the communes, including in residential areas a lot further out than Etterbeek.

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2. Re: Etterbeek

Qanamari - I think you are trying to help, but you must realise that your rather patronising and pedantic manner doesn't really make you particularly helpful.

Simply because one happens to be young, doesn't automatically negate any interest in cultural or historical interests. There is more to life than going to bars and nightclubs you know.

Guidebooks, which by the way, are not destined for tourists alone, but also for people with longer term interests, all state that Etterbeek is dull, in the sense that there is not much of interest to see on a historical or cultural level there. Just because an area has a bar doesn't automatically make that area less dull.

The rest of your post is largely irrelevant so if anyone else has more positive and interesting input to give I would appreciate it.

Antwerp, Belgium
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13 posts
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3. Re: Etterbeek

I don't know what you are trying to mean with a dull area. All I can tell you about Etterbeek is that the European institutions and many offices are located between Warandepark and Jubelpark. I quite like this area cos it has a kind of relaxed atmosphere even though I work there :p

Indeed, there aren't many cultural and historical sites and for those you will have to venture into the city centre. However, it's easily reachable by public transport. Living in the city centre might mean you have to put with too much street noise.

Eugene, Oregon
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26,786 posts
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4. Re: Etterbeek

Grippa, qaminari is one of the most helpful posters on this board, and I really think you have to reread your original post to understand why she gave the information she did. What was the point of mentioning you were young unless your query was whether there were also other young people living nearby? That is why she gave you the information about the universities being nearby and also the nightlife. Now you say your concern was not having culture and museums near where you live. Who does? Can't you hop on the trolley and go to any museum you want, do you have to have it outside your door?

I think she completely answered your original query appropriately based on the information you provided.

Destination Expert
for Brussels
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1,085 posts
30 reviews
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5. Re: Etterbeek

I have lived in etterbeek for seven years and it is just a place with bars restaurants and shops with nothing particularly outstanding about it . I wouldnt want to live in a lively area anyway sio it is good for me but i am probably old and boring.

the good news is that it has good public transport links and therefore it is pretty easy to get anywhere to find whatever floats your boat.

6. Re: Etterbeek

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