Heartbroken’s Guide to Summer in Brussels

Heartbroken’s Guide to Summer in Brussels on Trippin

In partnership with Ace & Tate

Heartbroken’s Guide to Summer in Brussels

Heartbroken collective on Trippin

To mark Ace & Tate’s ‘Bring on the Sun’ campaign, we’ve partnered up with the brand and collaborated with collectives across Europe to bring you their recommendations for the best ‘sun spots’ in their home city.

This series celebrates the transformative nature of summer and each city guide will shine a light on must-visit locations for enjoying the sunshine, local style.

As the headquarters of the EU and NATO, Brussels is known to many as the capital of Europe. A lush, green city, situated perfectly in the centre of the continent, it boasts a fascinating history and a host of cultural monuments.

Formal nineteenth century architecture sits comfortably next to cutting edge art galleries and there’s always a spot to grab a beer. The vibe is cool but understated, with a strong neighbourhood feel.

Heartbroken is a collective based in Brussels that has been throwing club nights in the city since 2015. The group celebrates the sensitive side of clubbing, calling itself ‘a very emotional club night’.

“We kind of bonded over listening to a lot of emotional and sad music. As a catharsis it’s great, when you feel a bit down and then you go to the club and go through very strong feelings all together,” says Liyo, a member of the group.

The team behind Heartbroken have come from far and wide to live in Brussels, a city which they find to be “very diverse and very chill,” especially when the sun’s out.

“During summer, it’s still breathable and not too crowded, as only a few neighbourhoods have mass tourism. There are some nice green spaces, and it’s still manageable to do everything by foot. It’s also super easy to run into friends by accident and people gather very naturally,” says Liyo.

Read their guide to find the best local flea markets, ice cream places and community spaces to hang out in summertime.

Jeu de Balle

It’s a very old and typical Brussels daily flea market. You can find good bargains and nice antiques as well as a lot of weird stuff. I used to go there since I’m a kid with my Dad and we would just look for some nice furniture for the house, and after that we would have a sandwich and a soup at la Clef d’Or, a cafe that’s right on the square and is still running today. Those are my dearest childhood memories.

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It’s my favourite ice cream spot, I think, in the world. During the first lockdown everything was closed, and you could only have takeaways and I would walk from my home 35 minutes all the way to Bargello and every day I would go and buy one ice cream and that was like my highlight of the day. It’s a true Italian style ice cream parlour, they have these flavours that I love and that you don’t find so often, dark chocolate sorbet and tuscan cream with pistachio and almonds.

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Place Louis Morichar

It’s a little park located in the heart of Saint Gilles, that typically represents the diversity of Brussels as a lot of different crowds mix there. There is a basketball court and a field where people play pétanque while sipping a beer, the kids play in the grass and the skaters use the upper level’s flat ground with their friends watching them sitting on the stairs. During the first lockdown, it spontaneously became a big hang out place as the bars were closed down, to the point that the police came to confiscate the skating equipment due to neighbourhood complaints.

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Jamaican Food Truck

They make these awesome jerk chicken plates and also fish but also, they make these cocktails which are a bit too strong but are really good, it’s worth the money. They have a DJ, he plays reggae and dancehall and he’s always very hyped about being there, it’s a very nice vibe.

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Decoratelier started as a scenography workshop that his owner, Jozef Wouters, opened to other collectives and people from the neighbourhood, and it quickly became a strong community and an inclusive lab for all kinds of ideas and projects. The space is easy to adapt as they use modular scaffoldings to create a different setting for every event, so they have had theatre performances, screenings, club nights as well as karaoke and a gym club.

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