Our stay began inauspiciously enough; we breezed through check-in. When we arrived at our first room, we unloaded our luggage and had barely entered the room when I noticed that the toilet was running. It never stopped. Our bellman called the desk, back onto the luggage cart went our bags, and down the hall we went. The three large ashtrays in room two made it unacceptable.
Exasperated, I told the bellman we had requested non-smoking, and the desk clerk knew this. Again, he called down, after some arguing we loaded the cart and headed for the elevator and a non-smoking floor. As I walked around the bed in our new room, voila, a piece of luggage that was not ours. The room already had an occupant. Another call to the desk. Another move. This time we actually got to unload and move in. The next morning, we were awakened by a dripping sound. There was water leaking through our ceiling onto the carpet. We called maintenance and soon a man arrived he headed for our bathroom saying, "You have water?" I smiled and pointed to the ceiling; his look of shock was priceless "OH!" he said and left. We received a call from the desk; we had to move immediately.
Each of our rooms was slightly different. All were small; all had horrible orange-and-pink bedspreads and gray carpeting. The furniture was retro, maybe even deco. The bathrooms differed greatly. The one in our leaky room was gorgeous, large, newly decorated and with a bidet. Our last one was small, tan, and had a tub that wouldn’t drain.
Now is there a happy ending? Yes, like the first-class hotel it is, the General Manager of the Metropole has responded to my e-mail and given us a full refund of our stay; not only that, but he has invited us back to stay in a suite with buffet breakfast on the house. Now that is class.
Actually, the buffet breakfast at the Metrople is quite grand; just don’t try to toast anything but regular bread. Bob, the radical that he is, tried to toast raisin bread and almost caused an international incident; Joe also tried to remove a newspaper, but was intercepted by Interpol (really it was the maitre d’). I -- now you have to promise not to tell -- smuggled out a little jar of jelly, and I have been looking over my shoulder ever since.
Location is the draw here. It’s an easy walk to the Grand Place, Bus 55 goes uptown, the tram and subway are below your feet, and shopping and restaurants are right around the corner. There is even an Internet café next door. Given an overhaul, the Metropole could be perfect; right now, it isn’t.
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February 7, 2011
August 10, 2009
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April 7, 2005
If you are looking for the weekends, check the Internet, because a lot of the people who stay here are on business, so the price dramatically decreases by Thursday evening.
The lobby is beautiful very reminiscent of old Europe. With its elaborate molding and beautiful décor, you feel like you should be dressed to the nines and be mistaken for a movie star. In addition to the lobby being beautiful, the service is first-class. I was meeting my party here, and they had no problem separating out luggage, giving us directions, or putting us in rooms next door to each other.
The rooms had just been redone when we stayed there (about 1 1/2–2 years ago). They were fairly large by European standards, and the bed was extremely comfortable, and there was a lot of storage space. We were able to spread out and enjoy our stay instead of feeling like we were cramped in the closet of someone’s house (like some hotels make you feel). The colors were very complementary; our room was done in hues of blue, while the other room was done in shades of yellow. The rooms were always clean, and we never felt rushed to leave the room to go and sightsee/eat/drink/shop.
The breakfast was the best part of this entire deal. We made my dad go and change his shoes once because we felt that he wasn’t formal enough. This is my family, though--we like to do everything correctly and everything formally. Breakfast is served in the ballroom and is a huge European spread. There is everything from simple French bread to chocolate-filled croissants, fresh fruit, hard-boiled eggs, cereal, yogurt, cheese, and a variety of juices, coffee, and tea.
In addition, you must have a drink in the bar at this hotel, regardless of whether you stay here or not. I prefer the outside one, but either way, it is beautiful. Everything is very ornate, very classic, very elegant, and somewhat overpriced. Outside, the chairs and tables are rattan, and inside, it is much more formal. Try a Belgian beer (they have over 500) or a glass of wine, or even an after-dinner drink. We had such a good time having drinks here that we consider it a Brussels experience and have even framed the receipt.
From journal Sensory Delight: Brussels, Belgium
August 18, 2004
If you don’t plan to stay, you can have a nice drink at the Café Metropole. It has a special place in my heart because it was the first café I went to when I first arrived in Brussels. It is as beautiful as the rest of the hotel.
From journal Must-See Brussels
December 7, 2003
From journal Brussels A Grande Adventure
Oakhurst, New Jersey
September 14, 2000
From journal A Good Time in Brussels