Antwerp diamonds.chocolates.trendy.hip.shopping

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Less is more ... rather than overwhelming you with volumes of travel tips, here is a specific list of exclusive recommendations with Mr & Mrs Crystal's stamp of approval.

bars

De Kaai

De Kaai is a hip hangar hangout, and for those learning how cool Antwerp has become, that means a night of Flemish revelry by the dockside. It is a complete party package with expertly mixed drinks, a trendy lounge club and a great dance space. De Kaai is both a restaurant and a bar making it the perfect spot for a fabulous, contemporary and stylish night out.

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 View Map ... Hangar 26/1, Rijnkaai 96, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium
De Vagant

When in Antwerp, do what the locals do, and that’s not entirely centred on drinking beer. Belgium’s other national drink - gin (known locally as “jenever”) dominates the menu at De Vagant. It may feel like an alternative drinking option, but whilst enjoying a few nips at this local institution, you may just feel like a local!

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 View Map ... 25 Reyndersstraat, Antwerp, Belgium
Stereo Sushi

Stereo Sushi is an underground bar serving sushi and sake earlier in the evening and transforming into a club later on, where some of Europe’s best house DJs spin the decks. The atmosphere is cool but by no means chilled, and the dancing soars to the next level when the crowd start dancing on the tables. Stereo Sushi is a fabulous place to party and stylishly combines wining, dining and grooving.

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 View Map ... Luikstraat 6, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium
Verso Café and Martini Bar

Enrich your shopping experience with a pit stop at the Martini Bar at Verso, a tiny space furnished with slick white d├ęcor, at the entrance to fashion emporium Verso. A fireplace with an overlooking buffalo head will strike your attention, but not as much as the pretty fashionistas and brand-savvy patrons. Like its sister bar in Milan’s Dolce & Gabbana shop, this is a place with eccentric glamour. One sip of a luscious cocktail will help you forget about your credit card statement.

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 View Map ... 9-11 Lange Gasthuisstraat, Antwerp, Belgium

what we think

Head to Antwerp for quirky vintage pieces, avant garde designer labels, slick street wear or even glistening diamonds – it has recently become one of the hottest European shopping destinations. Take a stroll through the charismatic downtown streets, wander through the historic squares and pause only for a pot of fresh moules and frittes, washed down with a perfectly poured Belgian beer. In the winter months, enjoy mulled wine with traditional waffles whilst soaking up the vibrant atmosphere of the Christmas markets. Antwerp claims to have founded house music and a night out at one of its restaurant-cum-clubs certainly supports this theory.