From Show Business to Royalty

A close look at…
Brussels | Hotel Le Plaza

Together with the ‘Metropole’ (1895) and the ‘Astoria’ (1909), the ‘Plaza’ forms the trilogy
of historic grand hotels in Brussels. Inaugurated in 1930 in the sober, streamlined style that characterizes the period, the hotel’s facade bears a certain resemblance to the ‘George V’ in Paris to which it is often, albeit superficially, compared to.
The evident dividing line, however, is drawn by the extraordinary architectural asset of its Belgian counterpart: a massive performance venue with 1,300 seats, incorporated as an independently functioning, yet integral part of the project* that would draw the Who’s Who of the entertainment industry to both parts of the house.

Situated on the main North-South thoroughfare of the historic center, the program of the ‘Plaza’ was, at the time, entirely in sync with its location when it was the sophisticated urban pleasure ground of the capital. But after a closure of nearly two decades, the hotel reopened in 1996, arguably saved by a sound building structure and an original layout which only needed minor spatial modifications. Today officially affiliated with the Royal House of Belgium, the hotels has been courageously relaunched as a bastion of fine living in a central neighborhood that, though not unappealing, definitely lost the glow of earlier times.

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