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Hotel Amigo, Brussels

Belgian style, Italian accent.

Steps from the Grand Place, Brussels’ UNESCO World Heritage site, sits the five-star Hotel Amigo, the preferred address of visiting celebrities and politicians, a quiet oasis among the tourists crowding the cobblestone streets. Built just in advance of the 1958 World’s Fair, the 173-room Hotel Amigo became a Rocco Forte Hotel in 2000, renovated and refurbished by co-owner and hotel design director Olga Polizzi.

A red velvet circular banquette surrounded by 15th century paving stones encourages guests to pause for a moment in the hotel’s lobby, a gallery for 18th century Flemish and Aubusson tapestries. Adjacent to the lobby, Bar Amigo overlooks the bustling streets, providing a daytime refuge for guests to relax in overstuffed green and red leather loveseats. As soon as the clock strikes five, a well-heeled post-work crowd streams through the bar doors for cinq à sept.

The luxury of Hotel Amigo’s rooms is apparent from one’s first step onto the thickly plush carpet. The spacious sitting room of a Classic Suite is decorated in soft shades of cream, brown, and green, and the walls are adorned with reproductions of Marcel Broodthaers’s surrealist paintings, black and white portrait sketches by Anton Goossens, and pear-shaped wood sculptures in homage to artist René Magritte.

The bedroom’s king size bed is a crisp and tempting pile of white linens and the adjacent dressing room is an urbane lady’s dream: a table with an attached makeup mirror is set in front or a large window; behind it, the two-sided closet offers a pair of grey and white striped slippers, several padded and wood hangers, a lavender closet sachet, and, for those keen to maintain their exercise routines, a yoga mat and free weights. A newly-acquired Fabienne Delvigne hat or Maison Martin Margiela dress would be happily ensconced in this space.

The Carrara marble bathroom features heated floors, a steam shower, thick terry cloth robes, and warm towels thanks to the heated towel rack surrounding the deep soaker tub. Heeley bath amenities in elegant black and white packaging are displayed on the long marble shelf behind the commode, while a framed portrait of Belgium’s favourite traveller, Tintin, is a humorous touch to the sleek décor.

Suite guests are provided with breakfast in their room or within Ristorante Bocconi, the in-house restaurant featuring classic Italian cuisine made with seasonal Belgian ingredients. With cheeky Fornasetti plates displayed on the walls, diners might find themselves rubbing shoulders with European power players fresh from meetings at the European Union. The martini bar area provides complimentary antipasti with cocktails, and after indulging in the four course set dinner menu, guests will happily have sweet dreams thanks to Galler Chocolatier offerings on the pillow.

Hotel Amigo, Brussels, rue de l’Amigo 1, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium, +32 2 547 47 47.