This neoclassical town house was built in 1876 and extended upwards in 1887 when it became the home of Émile Bockstael, Mayor of Laeken/Laken, who lived here until 1920. A series of paintings inspired by the art of Ancient Egypt adorns the hall and stairwell, but whether they were commissioned by Bockstael – a member of the Cercle des Amis Philanthropes (Circle of Philanthropic Friends), whose temple marked the high point of Egyptomania – or the next owner remains a mystery. Experts have worked out that the artist based the works on tombs at the necropolises of Beni Hasan and Dra’ Abu el-Naga’. With an Empire-style office on the first floor, a Louis-XVI drawing room, a dining room lined with tapestries on rustic themes (known as Ténières) and a veranda decorated in Art Nouveau floral style, the building seems to be a compendium of the history of art. Queens now plans to hold exhibitions here and to make the reception rooms available for chamber-music concerts.
Guided tours: Sat. & Sun. at 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 14:00, 15:00, 16:00 and 17:00 (in French); 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 14:30, 15:30, 16:30 and 17:30 (in Dutch). In cooperation with Atelier de Recherche et d’Action Urbaines (ARAU) and Korei Guided Tours.
Sat. & Sun., 10:00 to 18:00
Avenue de la Reine/Koninginnelaan 266, Brussels-Laeken/Laken
Guided tours and by reservation only