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Daringman cafe in Brussels protected as heritage site

15:00 24/02/2024

The interior and facade of the cafe Au Daringman at the junction of Rue de Flandre and rue du Chien Marin, also known as "Chez Martine", will be protected as a heritage site, Brussels secretary of state Ans Persoons has announced.

“After cult cafés such as l'Espérance, l'Archiduc, the Métropole, the Cirio, La Ruche, Brasserie Verschueren and the Falstaff, we add Au Daringman to an impressive list of protected Brussels cafes,” said Persoons.

The building’s interior is designed to mimic the Art Deco-inspired style of the second world war and after, using simple plywood panels and imitation leather because wood and genuine leather were scarce at the time.

Persoons explained that while such cafes were quickly labelled "old-fashioned" because of the late application of an Art Deco-inspired design, the cafe has both heritage and social and aesthetic value which should be preserved for future generations as a typical example of Brussels' rich café culture.

Geometric patterns in the cafe aimed to give it a contemporary look at the time of its construction, with the design continued in the panelling and the bar to form a coherent whole with the simple furniture.

The proposal to classify the cafe interior is part of a wider series of proposals to classify and protect the remarkable cafe interiors of Brussels.

Written by Helen Lyons