An open air DJ bar with an underground flavour. Held every Friday and Saturday night in summertime (weather permitting) the DJs spin a plethora of discs ranging from electropunk to drum 'n' bass via goa trance, acid house and the occasionally rather commercial dance set. The party is held in what is known as the Royal Park opposite the Royal Palace and starts around 11 in the evening, steaming on until the early hours (6-7am, although the party ended earlier last summer).
It's best to have a meeting place in case you get lost as the crowds are thick and it's easy to misplace friends in the happy chaos. Drink prices are average for Brussels (ie cheaper than most expat bars).
Le Parc de Bruxelles, opposite the Royal Palace; nearest metro: Kunst-Wet/Arts-Loi;
The only big techno club in Brussels. Past guests include Jeff Mills, Kevin Saunderson, Derrick May, Carl Cox, Laurent Garnier, Dave Clarke, Stacey Pullen and Sven Väth to name just a few. The resident DJs spin classy vinyl, and while the crowd can be rather impersonal, there's a friendly vibe especially around 4 in the morning.
Best to check out the website to stay in touch with events, but events are regularly advertised. Seeing Bukem play there last year was seriously wicked and the club itself is well known as one of the places to be for ravers in Brussels.
Rue Blaes; nearest metro: Porte de Halle; www.fuse.be
The Union is a bohemian piratical bar in a bohemian, piratical area (St Gilles). It was originally the home of the Union of St Gilles football club (holders of the longest unbeaten record of any football club in Belgium) and now plays host to punks, hippies, and stoners of every description (although I wouldn't recommend lighting one up there, new Belgian legislation regarding cannabis notwithstanding).
The décor is composed of insane clowns, grinning pirates, a nice poster of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and various other head toys that will both amuse and fascinate the casual observer. Some nice runework in the loos is representative of the anarchistic spirit of this counter-cultural icon.
St Gilles, the 'Parvis'; nearest tram stop: Parvis de St Gilles
Bizon café is a blues bar in the St Gery area. It offers a wide range of chilled vodkas, genevers, Belgian beers and bison blood (try it you'll like it) in a smoky blues atmosphere. About the only party going on in Brussels on a Monday night is the café's jam session, which hosts such blues circuit favourites as Bai Kamara, Geezer Young, Roman, Stevie and Rob Fewster.
A genuine crowd spirit with the chance to get trollied on a Monday night whenever it's been hard getting back to work.
Karperbrug 7; near central station and the Grand Place; www.cafebizon.com
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