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Need a decent hostel near NATO in Brussels for a couple months

Need a decent hostel near NATO in Brussels for a couple months

Jun 16th, 2009, 10:01 AM
  #1  
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Need a decent hostel near NATO in Brussels for a couple months

I am in need of a good hostel or basic hotel close to NATO in Brussels for my son. Neither he nor I have never been to Brussels and don't know the area. Seems NATO headquarters is near the airport. Anyway he needs a place to stay for 7 weeks starting June. 23rd. Probably a hostel or a room in someones flat or home would be ideal. Any suggestions? Thanks
char1755 is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 10:10 AM
  #2  
 
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I would think a studio apartment would be best for 7 weeks and the longer you stay the cheaper it is per day. It would be tough living in a hostel for 7 weeks unless he could get a single room and they had some cooking facilities. Apartments usually have washers, stoves, refrigerators and for longer stays (more than a week or two) will clean weekly.

Try hostelworld.com or other hostel sites to find hostels and their facilities and ratings.

You didn't state why he will be near NATO HQ but can't the people he will be working/studing with offer some accommodation resources.

Also search on this board for apartments in Belgium or look in guidebooks for recommendations.
adrienne is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 10:23 AM
  #3  
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Thanks for your info - he has been told a general area to stay in which is near NATO but that is it. He has emailed a few people about apartments but seems people want money upfront or contracts signed and I don't think he should do that - how do you know if it is a scam?? Would it be better to just get over there and look for housing?
char1755 is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 10:58 AM
  #4  
 
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It will be difficult to find apartments at the last minute. They are very popular now, even for short stays of a few nights. I've rented apartments in Italy and France and many many people on this board have rented apartments. I did have to give a deposit and think that's natural since the agency/landlord would not want to be out the rent if there was a no show.

After you find an apartment you can post the link on this forum and ask for opinions about it to help you determine if it is a good deal.

I guess you can never know if something is a scam or not; even with hotels or rooms in someone's house. Scams do exist but I think in a very very small percentage of the time. Think about all the things you've done in your life and how many time have you been scammed? You will have some information about the agency or owner of the apartment and can check on Tripadvisor for recommendations but not everyone posts a recommendation, good or bad. I would not worry about an apartment being a scam.

Check vrbo.com (vacation rental by owner) for apartments or do a google search.
adrienne is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 11:05 AM
  #5  
 
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I was a State Department intern at NATO during the summer of 2001 and shared an apartment with two other interns. We rented from Brussels Business Flats (www.bbf.be). It was pricy at the time, even though the exchange rate was far better. A one-bedroom apartment at our building is now running at 1,040 euros a month. It was close to NATO (30 minute walk), although we usually took the bus.

As you mentioned, NATO is near the airport on the northern outskirts of Brussels. The neighborhood is mostly large, featureless apartment buildings. I'm not sure whether it would be easy or even possible to rent a room in an apartment in that area.

Another intern that summer rented a studio apartment on rue Franklin near the EU buildings. I don't recall how she found it, but I know she hadn't arranged it ahead of time. Your son might try staying in a hostel for his first week while looking for something more permanent. With NATO and the EU in town, Brussels has a huge transient population. It should be relatively easy to find something short term once he's on the ground. Craigslist also has some listings for short term stays in Brussels to give him an idea of what might be available and at what price.
tippecanoe is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 11:19 AM
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Let's Go Europe is IMO the best source of infos on hostels - also a wealth of other info - at any major library or bookstore.
Palenque is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 11:27 AM
  #7  
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He does not want to spend a ton of money so probably a small studio that has a kitchen would be perfect. I will get him to look at everyones suggestions. Would be perfect if someone would just rent a room to him in their own home and have breakfast and dinner every once in a while for him - bet that would be hard to find??
char1755 is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 12:37 PM
  #8  
 
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Brussels Bed and Breakfasts
Brussels, Belgium Bed and Breakfast and Inns directory. Wide selection Brussels B&Bs to choose from.
www.bedandbreakfast.com/brussels-belgium.html
Palenque is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 12:44 PM
  #9  
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Like the idea of a bed and breakfast!! Found out need something near Schuman Circle area
char1755 is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 01:02 PM
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Could you tell us why your son is spending the summer in Brussels? Is it work or school? Could either of these offer assistance of some sort?

As for location, Schuman Circle isn't close to NATO, but there's a subway stop there. While NATO isn't on a subway line, it's well-connected to central Brussels by bus.
tippecanoe is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 02:18 PM
  #11  
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He actually will be working at NATO for the seven weeks before he heads off to grad school so that is why he is looking for something not too expensive since money is tight for him!! Wonder why they said for him to try Schuman Circle when it is not close - I guess the subway stop?? Can anyone recommend a better place for him to look? Thanks
char1755 is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 03:26 PM
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There is a bus from Schumann to Nato.

I live near Schumann and work near Nato.

Living in a hostel is not a good idea. He can share a house or an apartment or rent a studio.

Here is a link for Roommates
http://www.vlan.be/en/immo/roommate.html

The Vlan also has ads for studios/apartments etc.

Brussels Business Flats are very expensive. I lived there last year while my house was undergoing some work. I paid about 2k euros a month for a very small 2 bed.

Also, he doesn't want to live around Nato - the area is dead.

He should concentrate on post codes 1200, 1040, 1000 and 1030 in his search.

Around Schumann is fine, as the bus service is good and he'll find that lots of young people working in Nato are living there too.
Lawchick is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 03:29 PM
  #13  
 
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The dress code at NATO is professional. As an intern, I hauled suits, ties, and shoes over there along with other clothes to wear after work and when travelling on the weekend. With such a heavy load, spending any time in a hostel will be very difficult unless, as adrienne suggests, your son is able to get a single room.

Schuman Circle would be a nice place to live, but there is no reason to limit the search to that neighborhood. NATO is easily accesible from other points of the city. For only seven weeks, I'd be inclined to take whatever I could find in my price range so long as it's on a bus/subway line and not in a dangerous neighborhood. Areas to avoid are St. Joste/Sint Joost, the area around Gare du Nord, and Schaarbeek.
tippecanoe is offline  
Jun 16th, 2009, 11:43 PM
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Not all of Schaarbeek is bad - in fact many of the streets around Rond-Point Schumann are in Schaarbeek. Landlords in BXL are used to people staying for short periods because of the enormous number of visitors to do with the European Community and similar institutions. Lawchick's advice is good - I would be inclined to listen to her, based on my own experiences.

Lavandula
lavandula is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 12:44 AM
  #15  
 
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Yep, you should listen to me! Schaerbeek is actually very nice. It's a very big commune and a very small part of it is rotten. Indeed many streets around the EU a buildings and Schumann are in Schaerbeek.

If I can be of any help regarding your son finding something, don't hesitate to ask. I know all the streets in the area he will be looking in as I'm on a permanent house hunt........even in Schaerbeek!
Lawchick is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 07:37 AM
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some years ago at least Schaerbeek was a hot spot for nightlife for younger folk
Palenque is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 07:52 AM
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NATO Brussels have Listings of people looking for rooms/roomates. Have him post his requirements. It comes out every Thursday, contact the NATO Relocation Services Office.
Viajero2 is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 08:50 AM
  #18  
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Viajero2 - do you by chance know the website for NATO brussels relocation services office?
char1755 is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 10:57 AM
  #19  
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Ok seems son wants to stay in a hotel for the first 3 or 4 nights near the airport which is close to NATO to figure everything out first. Any ideas for resonable hotels in this area. I do see the Gresham and Mercure hotels - any other suggestions?
char1755 is offline  
Jun 17th, 2009, 11:52 AM
  #20  
 
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www.accorhotels.com may have the cheapest airport hotels - sometimes weekend specials, etc.
Palenque is offline  

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