The magnificent 1898 post office of Ghent, Belgium is repurposed as a luxury hotel

In the heart of beautiful Ghent, Belgium, a historic 1898 post office has been repurposed and renewed as a new luxury hotel called 1898 The Post.

Belonging to the Zannier hotel group, the 38-room hotel pays homage to the building’s heritage, but has a warm, modern ambiance.

Located in the heart of Ghent, and boasting a magnificent 177-foot (54-meter) clock tower, it’s sandwiched between the Graslei and Grain Market.

One of Ghent’s gorgeous canal areas.
Photo credit: Storm Cunningham

For those who haven’t yet had the pleasure, I (Storm) strongly recommend adding Ghent to your next European travel itinerary (along with the incredible town of Bruges, just a short train ride away). I had that pleasure when I keynoted the 6th annual European Conference on Ecological Restoration, which took place there in 2008.

After opening its doors in 1909, Ghent’s grand post office quickly became a hub of activity, remaining in operation until 2001. Now transformed, visitors from around the world can sleep and dine in the midst of history.

Built between 1898 and 1910, Ghent’s post office building was designed by architect Louis Cloquet in collaboration with Stéphane Mortier for the 1913 World exhibition.

It is built in an eclectic style, with predominantly neo-Gothic and neo-Renaissance influences, echoing the beautiful façade of the Gildehuis der Vrije Schippers along the Graslei Canal.

The striking clock tower, 52 meters tall, adds an exquisite touch to the historical vista formed by the Belfry of Ghent, St Bavo’s Cathedral, and St. Michael’s Bridge.

With great views through the grand window, the restored wood and indirect lighting create a cozy atmosphere accented with a contemporary touch of freshness. The natural earth colors of the interior design combine a local sense of place with a relaxed feeling of being at home.

In addition to the guestrooms, there is a multi-functional room suited for both business and tourism gatherings – from meetings and product presentations to festive dinners. Breakfast and afternoon tea are available to the guests as well as open to the public.

The hotel’s crowning touch is the cocktail bar – called The Cobbler, after the special type of cocktail shaker. The bar’s ambiance reflects an old-time atmosphere- with a stunning view of the spires of historic Ghent. With an identity of its own, The Cobbler’s hopes to be the finest cocktail bar in the city.

See the 1898 The Post website.

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