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Brussels Chinatown

In Brussels, there is an unofficial Chinatown waiting to be discovered by visitors in the capital of Belgium.

This Brussels Chinatown is located right in the city center and next to Brussels’ main tourist site; the Grand' Place also known as the Grote Markt or Market Square.

Inside Brussels Chinatown

Centered mainly on the streets of St-Katelijne, there existed all the typical features of a Chinatown; many Chinese restaurants, a handful of Chinese supermarkets, Chinese pastry shops, hair dressing saloon, art gallery, travel businesses and even a Chinese press.

These businesses play the dual role of catering to the needs of local Chinese community and also as a space of cross cultural interaction.

Of the various businesses in Brussels Chinatown, restaurants and supermarkets feature prominently as sites of cultural interaction since they have a good mix of clients not exclusively Chinese.

Officially unofficial Chinatown

Unlike Antwerp Chinatown, Belgium’s only official Chinatown, Brussels Chinatown does not have the boundary markers such as lions and archways. Despite that, it does perform the role of a Chinatown and is probably seen by the community as one.

Perhaps that is why a restaurant has called itself “Chinatown” almost like the officially unofficial announcement of its status of Brussels Chinatown.

Official Chinatown in the capital of European Union

As this Chinatown continues to grow, it will be interesting for it to earn its status as an official Chinatown in the capital of Belgium and European Union.

It will be a nice addition to the multicultural environment of Brussels and even better if it is crowned with its own impressive archway.

For the time being, use the Brussels Marriott as a landmark. Go to the backlane of Brussels Chinatown and you will see signboards with Chinese characters guiding you towards Brussels Chinatown.

 

 

Related article:

Belgium
Chinatowns of the world
Chinatowns in Europe

 








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