Gîte d'Etape - Youth Hostel Jacques Brel, Brussels

City Centre
3,048 Reviews
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Gîte d'Etape - Youth Hostel Jacques Brel Reviews

Gte d'Etape-Auberge de Jeunesse Jacques Brel is a large, modern hostel housed in a beautiful period building close to the heart of Brussels. Spacious and very well equipped (including a games room), this hostel is suited to both small and large groups and also attracts families. It is notable for a generous breakfast in a clean, modern, comfortable self-service restaurant.

The Location

It is located about fifteen minutes' walk from the Grande Place, in the northeast Saint-Josse-ten-Noode Quarter of Brussels. The Royal Place, le Musee des Beaux Arts, the famous Musical Instruments Museum, the War Museum, and the European Union institutions and Parliamentarium are all with walking distance. Arriving by Eurostar at Gare du Midi, the best route is by Metro Line Two or Six, alighting at Metro stop Botanique. Coming from the airport, bus routes twelve or twenty-one take you to the centre, or use the airport train until it connects with the Metro network, conveniently at Rogier for connection to Lines Two or Six.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The dorms have conventional, two-berth wooden bunks which are sturdy, each with its own bunk light recessed into the plasterwork. Power-point provision is not to individual bunks and is just about adequate in quantity for the room. There are few hooks, but good provision of in-dorm lockers (bring your own padlock). There is a desk and a couple of chairs. The large opening window can be obscured completely at night by a roller shutter blind. There is ample space between bunks to dress and change. The feel is airy, clean, and slightly utilitarian. Mattresses are comfortable, and bedding is clean and soft.

Dorms have a small en suite with shower and hand-wash basin, but toilets are located in the central lift lobby on each floor, though not in huge numbers, and will likely be busy if the hostel is fully occupied. The shower is powerful and hot.

Common Spaces

The reception area is permanently staffed and building access is strictly controlled to guests only. The entrance lobby has relaxed seating, three computers for guests use, toilets, and displays of leaflets on local attractions. Leading off this area is a bar which offers both food and drink, and a games room with ping pong table and other games. A self-catering kitchen is located on the first floor, together with a restaurant serving an excellent continental breakfast with plenty of choice and no portion control. There is free Wi-Fi throughout, and download speeds are perfectly reasonable. There is an outside seating area, still within the building footprint, that is popular with smokers.


Gte d'Etape - Auberge de Jeunesse Jacques Brel is very clean, well run, and ideally suited to larger groups and families wanting to explore Brussels. At quiet times of the year, it can seem somewhat underused and barn-like. There is an excellent sauna on the very next street.

Conscientious reviewer
Outside Reception Seating in Reception Games room Dorm (a) Dorm (b) Dorm (c) Dorm (d) Wash hand basin in ensuite Ensuite shower

Very Solid Hostel

One of the best deals in all benelux; a three person room with its own bathroom and shower will run you 20 euros a night, with cheaper prices for the larger rooms. Breakfast is standard, but free. The real draw here is the bar, where you'll find a wide variety of surprisingly inexpensive belgian beers to compliment people you'll meet. The staff are all extremely nice and helpful, and be sure to get a "Use-it" map from the desk, as it's chock-full of great info. The kitchen for travelers closes rather early, and wifi only works on the first two floors, but those are pretty minor concerns.

Age 20 | American

Good facilities

the dorm is tidy and new and have a good view of the neighborhood. the location is not far away from metro.


Although it's a bit out of the way and the rooms are iffy, HI - Brussels - Jacques Brel Hostel is a great hostel. Everyone is really cool and the atmosphere is awesome.

The Location

This hostel is kind of out of the way from the city centre, but it's well worth the trip. You have to navigate through some winding roads to find it, but it's right beside a lovely square, making for a pretty decent view from the window. On the bright side, there are so many little restaurants and shops nearby that it's not a big deal if you're not in the mood to trek to the city centre for dinner.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The rooms are small but decent. Everything is quite clean, and there are lockable cabinets for your valuables (bring your own lock). The view from the window is nice, and if you open it up you can get a breeze running through the room in lieu of air conditioning. There are lots of electrical outlets. The bathrooms are very small, and the shower is so awkwardly placed in a way that you could sit on the toilet whilst bathing yourself. Because there's only a shower curtain as a barrier, water gets everywhere. Also, the fan in the bathroom is really loud; much to the dismay of any roommate who is trying to sleep if you go in there at night.

Common Spaces

The common spaces in this hostel are excellent; there's a courtyard with lawn chairs, lights, and a fountain that connects the bar and the computer area (free Wi-Fi as well, by the way). It's very easy to meet new people, as everything is open and the alcohol is flowing. The music in the bar is really loud, but the bartender is extremely friendly and even gave us each a free beer. Front desk staff are also amazing and very helpful.


There is a huge pinboard by the computers with pamphlets for tours and pub crawls, both of which we would highly recommend. Brussels is a beautiful city, and this is a cool home base for exploring it.


Good location and Clean

Good Points -- Friendly and helpful staff, Fairly clean, Free internet, Laundry, Good location (close to Metro), Bar, Outdoor seating. Bad Points -- No lift on my side of the building (My room was on the third floor, with the last floor up a narrow flight of stairs), Room was small, Shower head could not be adjusted (water sprayed toward the curtain).


I visited Jacques Brel on 9/06/06. room was fine, but the rest! do not use the iron in the laundry room. It burned a fist sized hole in an expensive shirt, and it was set on min. Also when i checked out, i left an iPod nano on the bed. when i went back thrre hours later, no one had handed it in and management wouldn't let me back in the room to look or ask the thiefs, sorry, people that were in the room now. just said "sorry. this stuff happens." basically you get what you pay for. so in summary if all you're looking for is a bed, ok. if you're looking for security and peace for mind about your belongings, look elsewhere.


The first thing the Jacques Brel doesn't have going for it: it's in Brussels! The rooms were always stifling hot and the Internet could only be accessed when the bar opened at night. What's worse, when the bar opened it doubled as the reception desk, so good luck getting service! I will give it some credit; even though it was filled with school groups during my visit, my room was remarkably quiet. Also, the breakfast was quite good and well-rounded, i.e. cereal, toast, jam, coffee, tea, etc. I still wouldn't go back or recommend it.

The Rick

The hostel is situated at the end of Rue de la Sablonniere with many of its windows opening to a small square halfway between the underground stations Botanique and Madou.

The building is a bit of a labyrinth with lots of stairs to climb to get to the upper floors. The rooms are medium-sized if not exactly spacious. As with most hostels, the beds are bunk beds. Each bed is equipped with an individual light, which is a unique bonus. There are no chairs and table in the rooms, which can be a bit awkward if you want to eat in since there's no kitchen either. Magnetic cards are used as keys to unlock the doors. Padlocks cannot be borrowed but can be bought at the reception.

There's a bathroom for every room with basin and shower, but toilets are shared with people from other rooms. What's nice is that all bathrooms and toilets are spotless. The same is more or less true of the rest of the hostel as well. The rooms and public areas are generally nice and clean, but the place could do with a bit more colors and decoration to make it warmer.

Breakfast which is included in the price is not bad (the usual bread, cheese, something meaty, jam, cereal with orange juice and hot drinks). The capacity of the Internet area is rather limited but you can surf the net for free.

New arrivals can occupy their beds after 3 pm. The reception is closed after 7 pm, but latecomers can enter through the bar. The staff is far from being kind and helpful and not so good at foreign languages. Check out is late (11.30 am or 12.00 noon).

This hostel is ok and there's nothing outstanding one should really complain about, but it's neither extremely clean (sterile some people would say) nor very cosy. The lack of atmosphere - and also the lack of public rooms suitable for social activities - may be the reason for people not hanging around much making friends.

SUGAR Viktoria

More reviews...

Gîte d'Etape - Youth Hostel Jacques Brel Reviews from the Web

We enjoyed the hostel. Friendly atmosphere. No air conditioning. Free breakfast. Overall good hostel


We enjoyed our stay a lot.

Clean, well maintained and we even had a decent view from the room.

It was a bit hot but its hot in general everywhere these days. Perhaps consider ventilators in the room in summers.

Olivia at the reception was extremely friendly and not only made us welcome but also suggested us local places to eat.


The property would benefit from some sound absorbing surfaces, the noice in the corridors and the sound profile in the rooms were just not pleasant. Too many flat surfaces just makes the sound bounce around


Hostel was in a decent location. Problem I had was one of the receptionists was very rude and acted like you should know the answers to your questions already. But most of the other staff were nice. The rooms on the very top floor were like a sauna though.


Great hostel, with friendly and helpful staff. The free breakfast is a basic one, but still very nice to have included. The location isnt horrible but during my stay there was road construction going on right outside of the hostel. Also, I stayed in a female dorm with an ensuite the shower itself did not have a curtain or door which I found weird. Especially since the smaller top windows were not frosted, I dont know if the angle protects you from being seen but I was worried about that. Last thing, it wa


It was a perfect place to stay especially for a solo traveler.


We loved it the environment was great and it was just across the center of the city. It was amazing


Overall this was is a nice hostel, unfortunately I think we just got really unlucky. We had a middle aged lady and her daughter in our room and she was very rude. We also had teenagers next door both nights we stayed, and they were running around slamming doors and screaming for 30-45 minutes both mornings at 8AM! Not sure where the staff was to stop that. There was also no staff to give our keys too during checkout. The location however was very nice, Im sure most people have good times here.


It was my first time ever at a hostel. I did the female dorm room and it was perfect. The only thing that was a negative for me was that it was not a youth hostel as they have promoted. There were people of all ages staying at the hostel.


The facilities and room was great, I really loved the beds with full curtains. The area right outside at night was a bit dodgy but other than that it was a good location near the city center and had a good happy hour!


Great free breakfast! Nice clean rooms!


We stayed in a private double room. The room was not very big but it was very nice. Although the location is not perfect, it is not far from the city center either. (about 20 minutes walking distance) Breakfast is not like Turkish breakfast of course, but at least it is varied. everyone can find something to eat


Good location and friendly staff with a decent amount of storage space and a pretty spacious loft type room. However there was no hot water and bathroom wasnt particularly clean, breakfast was ok but nothing special.


Not single a complaint from me, however, I was there for less than 24 hours.


Nice hostel overall. The reception is closed during certain times which can be a bit of a struggle. However the beds and breakfast provided are excellent.


Very well located and great hospitality!




Loved our stay here. Staff were lovely, rooms were clean, good atmosphere. Wish the kitchen was open earlier but the staff were helpful to open it so we could get our food for the day. Would definitely stay again :)


Great hostel


My room was super nice! Great space, nice atmosphere, great breakfast, clean bathrooms, chargers by each bed.

Would definitely recommend!



If you're looking to stay in Brussels in a friendly, international atmosphere, the Jacques Brel Youth Hostel is perfect for you. Located in the very heart of the city, it is ideal for all the sights. The Jacques Brel Youth Hostel organises special theme visits around Brussels, concerts, activities run by different associations and much more.

Location and Contact


"If you're looking to stay in Brussels in a friendly, international atmosphere, the Jacques Brel Youth Hostel is perfect for you. Located in the very heart of the city, it is ideal for all the sights."



Address: Rue de la Sablonnière, 30, City Centre, Brussels (Bruxelles/Brussel), Belgium

Gîte d'Etape - Youth Hostel Jacques Brel is listed on the following booking sites:

Hostelworld Booking.com HostelsClub


Website Gîte d'Etape - Youth Hostel Jacques Brel Brussels www.lesaubergesdejeunesse.be
Phone Number: +32 (0)2 218 0187
To add or correct information for this listing, please use the Listing Correction Form.

Facilities and Amenities

Groups (10+ people)

Solo Traveller



City Tours

Wi-Fi in Lobby/Commons

Bike Rental

Lockers in Lobby

Luggage Storage


24 Hour Security


Board Games

Clothes Dryer

Credit Card Payments

Currency Exchange


Evening Entertainment



Hair Dryers

Hot Showers



Live Music/Performance

Lounge Area

Meeting/Banquet facilities

Movie Library/Rental

Swimming Pool


Table Tennis

Wheelchair Accessible

Curfew: No Curfew


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