Monday, 15 June 2015

Bruges City Break: Part One

Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges BelgiumExploring new cities can be so refreshing (and exciting), however sometimes, it can be just as nice to revisit somewhere you've previously discovered.  There's a certain degree of comfort and security in doing so, as you know where you're going and can sit back and enjoy the ride, as opposed to eagerly searching to squeeze as much out of the city as possible in the time you have.  On this occasion, my 'revisit' was the historic city centre of Bruges, a place I never grow tired of regardless how many times I visit!  One thing I do change however, is the hotel to return to at the end of each day - this time, I had the pleasure of staying at the Grand Hotel Casselbergh.

Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges Belgium
Part of Executive Room at the Grand Hotel Casselbergh
After quite an early start, I was relieved to arrive at the hotel mid-afternoon.  My first impression of the Grand Hotel Casselbergh was a very, very positive one and especially as the staff were so welcoming and tirelessly helpful.  The hotel's website had promised 'Luxury of the past, designed for the future' and in every way conceivable, that was fulfilled; the hotel is located at the very heart of the historic city and it's decor really does remind you of that at every turn.

From previous interior design posts on A Glass Of Ice, it would seem many of you share my appreciation of design schemes that merge earthy, neutral colours with soft textures and flashes of metallics.. with this in mind, I was in heaven.  To put it into perspective, I have about fifteen photos saved to my Mac of the lamp shown below and a further ten of the picture frames mounted to the wall!    

Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges Belgium

Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges Belgium
The bathroom came with a nice collection of L'Occitane toiletries
After an hour was spent in the hotel room unpacking and freshening up, we headed out for dinner.  Although the menu looked delicious at the Grand Hotel Casselbergh (anyone for chocolate fondant pudding?), it seemed a pity to cage ourselves in when we had only just arrived.  As soon as we could, we headed straight out for the main square in search of somewhere to enjoy dinner.  One thing was for certain though, we wouldn't be sitting outdoors.  The first day spent in Bruges was both cold and windy, however thankfully the weather continued to improve from there and by the time I was waving goodbye to the city, the temperature had risen to an impressive 27°C!

Grand Hotel Casselbergh Bruges Belgium
Grand Hotel Casselbergh, Entrance Hall

After just a two minute walk, we came across one of my favourite restaurants, La Belle Vue (located at 2 Steenstraat) and by this point, I was just about ready to faceplant the half roast chicken shown above, thanks to both tiredness and hunger!  It seems to receive a fair amount of negative reviews online, however regardless of the price, there's no denying the food is delicious and the location is ideal.  For this meal, we sat in a corner seat directly next to a large window - have I ever shared how much I love people watching?!

One thing to note, however, is that the dessert menu wasn't thrilling.  Instead, we walked about ten minutes through the city to reach another of my favourite places, the quiant Tea-room De Proeverie, and I'm not alone with my appreciation for this one as it seems to consistently be a hit with tourists!  I indulged in a couple of slices of apple cake on this occasion, however I highly recommend their vast menu of cupcakes as well.  Oh and all hot drinks come with a china dish containing three chocolate crisps and one chocolate praline truffle.  Cute?  I think so!  

Tea-room De Proeverie Bruges Belgium
Tea-room De Proeverie, Bruges

Tea-room De Proeverie Bruges Belgium
Tea-room De Proeverie Bruges Belgium
Tea-room De Proeverie Bruges BelgiumAfter settling into Bruges and eating a ridiculous amount of food, all that was left to do before heading back to the hotel (see hotel information here) was to wander through the cobbled streets and admire the city we were staying in..

Blouse - Giulia

Cardigan - Zara

Bag - Ralph Lauren


Chinos - Ralph Lauren (similar here)







I hope you've enjoyed the first instalment of my Bruges travel diary; part two will be coming shortly.. anticipate plenty more food, sunshine and architecture!

With love,

Gabrielle x

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161 comments

  1. Amazing shots!
    Have a great evening!
    Natallia Jolliet
    http://www.alexphotographygeneva.blogspot.com/

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  2. It looks marvellous, am happy you enjoyed yourself x

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    1. Thanks lovely, I truly did have a fantastic time :)

      Gabrielle x

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  3. Beautiful photos!

    http://thegaragestarlets.com

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  4. Looks amazing!!! You're hotel looks really pretty too!
    Melanie @ meandmr.com

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    1. Mm, it was probably my favourite hotel stayed in when visiting Bruges, I have to say!

      Gabrielle x

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  5. Traveling to new places is always a fun thing!

    http://beautyfollower.blogspot.gr

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    Replies
    1. That's true, although revisiting can be just as fun 'when done right' ;)

      Gabrielle x

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  6. I only know of Bruges from a movie called In Bruges that I once caught on tv with Colin Farrell and it seemed like such a quaint city. Glad that I'll be able to see more of it vicariously through your recent adventures there.

    Rowena @ rolala loves

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    Replies
    1. I'm yet to see that film, I'll have to take a look! I'm happy to have been able to give you an up-to-date insight of the city, Rowena :)

      Gabrielle x

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  7. I went to Bruges last Christmas so this post made me so happy! My boyfriend and I absolutely loved the place so it's so nice to browse through your pictures! I think I would have faceplanted that chicken too - it looks delicious!

    Can't wait to see your second post (I hope it includes Belgian chocolate!)

    xx lacoconoire.com

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    1. That's lovely to hear, I'm so pleased someone else feels the same way about Bruges! It must be wonderful at Christmastime, I visited once in October so the shops were creeping in that direction :)

      Gabrielle x

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  8. The hotel is gorgeous! :-) I love Hotel bathroom shampoos and creams :-D especially when they're a great selection! The food looks amazing I'd love to visit Bruges! Glad you're having an amazing time Gabrielle <3 :)

    Serene xoxo

    http://www.imserenel.wordpress.com

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    1. Haha it can certainly be fun to see what brand has been stocked - L'Occitane was a nice surprise!

      Gabrielle x

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  9. I love the images so much!

    ** I'm inviting you to join Love, Beauty Bloggers on facebook. A place for beauty and fashion bloggers from all over the world to promote their latest posts!

    xoxo;
    BEAUTYEDITER.COM

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  10. What a gorgeous city, Gabrielle! The pictures are fantasic, it looks like you had so much fun! The hotel room also looks really nice and the food delicious! I love this kind of posts and I really enjoyed this one. Thanks for sharing! xx

    http://alemint.blogspot.com/

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    1. It really is a destination worth visiting at least once - I had a brilliant time! Ah, I love reading/viewing travel posts too.. I'm glad you enjoyed this María :)

      Gabrielle x

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  11. I love exploring new places! Love the photos :)

    RedLip&Love

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    1. That makes two of us!

      Gabrielle x

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  12. hey gabrielle! it speaks volumes, when you want to re-visit a place. the hotel is lovely. i love their neutral decor. seems you had to do some light traveling for dinner and then again for dessert :) the roasted chicken looked delicious. that's a shame their desserts were not up to par. glad you found a place that had both beautiful and delicious cupcakes! thanks for sharing your adventure. beautiful! oh, and I LOVE your sandals!
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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    1. That's a good point, it means you just can't get enough of the place! The hotel's decor was very attractive and you're right, we'd have burned off what we ate in no time haha ;) Oh thanks very much Kim, they're on sale now at Dune!

      Gabrielle x

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  13. Happy Monday, lovely! Looks just stunning! Seriously love stopping by your blog!
    Sending you much love!!!
    xoxo, Vanessa
    www.whatwouldvwear.net

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    Replies
    1. That's so lovely to be told, have a wonderful weekend Vanessa!!

      Gabrielle x

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  14. It looks so pretty & sounds like you had such a great time. Can't wait for the next one:). Love the pictures by the way:) x

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    1. I'm glad you're enjoying this Bruges travel diary, Mille :)

      Gabrielle x

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  15. Stunning shots!
    Have a great evening!
    Angela Donava
    http://www.lookbooks.fr/

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  16. Such an amazing apartment and city!
    xx, Flora
    http://lapapillonnoire.blogspot.hu/

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    Replies
    1. Bruges is certainly very pretty - this is a hotel by the way, not an apartment!

      Gabrielle x

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  17. Bruges is on my wishlist. Whenever I see or hear anything more, it just fuels the wish! Lovely post xx

    VanessaVonJames | Fashion Blog

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    1. I'd recommend keeping it firmly on your wish list until you visit!

      Gabrielle x

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  18. I loved the Grand Hotel Casselbergh when we stayed there last year, so grand and fancy, our room had a chandelier! We also had a lovely meal at the restaurant opposite.

    I love that so much of this is food, Bruges is all about the pretty buildings and lots of eating and drinking!

    Lisa | Not Quite Enough

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    1. As we discussed on Instagram, I'm so glad you loved this hotel as well - it's a pleasure to stay at! I hadn't thought of dining at the restaurant opposite.. perhaps next time :)

      Gabrielle x

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  19. Such a beautiful place I love it

    xx
    Tyana
    cityofglitter.com

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  20. love your first picture. i have an obsession with architecture

    http://only4feet9.blogspot.com

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    1. You're not alone there Annick, thanks very much!

      Gabrielle x

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  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. I'm excited to see Part 2! The hotel looks lovely and I adore your casual chic outfit!

      Tina
      www.justatinabit.com

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    2. Part two is now up and part three is coming tomorrow! Thanks very much Tina!

      Gabrielle x

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  22. Oh, wow!! I've been to Bruges last summer and it really is a gorgeous city :D I miss travelling <3 the food looks delicious, yummy

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    1. So pleased you agree! Ah, perhaps it's time to book yourself on another trip?! ;)

      Gabrielle x

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  23. everything looks wonderful.. and yum that food

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    1. Mmm memories of Belgian food..

      Gabrielle x

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  24. Wow. That bathroom looks amazing. The pictures are so beautiful and the food looks delicious. Thoder cupcakes look some precious!

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    Replies
    1. Bathrooms are so important when staying at a hotel, so it was a relief to be met by such a beautiful one!

      Gabrielle x

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  25. One of the best things when travelling is getting to eat more food than what we're used to. ;) Everything looks so good and those cupcakes at the end are beyond lovely. I could live in a tea-room like that one! The hotel is gorgeous, too! Love the picture of flowers and the chandelier with the stairs in the background. Overall Bruges city looks magical <3
    xx

    http://www.stylebydeb.com

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    1. Haha I couldn't agree with you more, Deb! The cupcakes were delicious, I opted for a plain chocolate one to secure a hit of Belgium's finest feature. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on these photos, I appreciate it :)

      Gabrielle x

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  26. I loved this blog post! The hotel looked so charming with a vintage appeal. The food looked delicious and your style is very inspiring :) check out my magazine http://bauchlefashion.com

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    1. 'Charming with a vintage appeal' - a very nice way of describing the Grand Hotel Casslebergh, Heather! Thanks so much, how lovely of you to say :)

      ps. thanks so much for asking to interview me, I'll have my answers over to you as soon as I can!

      Gabrielle x

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  27. Replies
    1. That's great, I'm excited for you!

      Gabrielle x

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  28. This place looks amazing and the food looks delicious :)
    fashionphases.com

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    1. The food was simply divine!

      Gabrielle x

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  29. I do love travelling and seeing new place but you are right it is nice to re-visit places as well! There are things that I missed the first time too!. Love your gorgeous pictures, everything looks so amazing! The streets are full of culture. You looked amazing on your adventure!

    Rebecca
    www.winnipegstyle.ca

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    1. I feel the same way, though Bruges is an exception for me! So pleased you've enjoyed this blog post Rebecca and thank you for your kind words :)

      Gabrielle x

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  30. The interior of that hotel does look dreamy. I can totally understand you taking plenty of pictures of it! I never know what the food in Belgium is like so I'm glad you took us along on your meals :) Looking forward to the second part xx

    www.tongue-in-chic.com

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    1. Hotels can be such a pleasure to photograph, especially when they look this good! Oh yes, like any European city, Bruges has plenty of interesting foods on offer :)

      Gabrielle x

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  31. Beautiful photos! I love your outfit, you look great :) The hotel looks really nice, I definitely wouldn't mind staying there.

    Ash | Liakada

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    1. Thank you! This outfit was probably a little warm for a sunny day, but it was comfortable!

      Gabrielle x

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  32. Oh my Gabrielle,

    This is such a wonderful post. The street and city looks pretty serene and quiet at that point, which is good in some ways, relaxing. Now I am curious for one, how far is your home to Bruges, and second, why would there be negative reviews on the that chicken menu coz it looks super yummy to me, though (just that it looks a little dry, so little gravy?)

    Haha, can tell you loved your room, with that amount of pics taken *_^ Looks like a breezy and lovely getaway you had there.

    Shall have my eyes peeled here for your second parter then *_^ Thanks for sharing!

    Cheers,
    Jeann
    http://luminnej.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you so much for this wonderful message, Jeann. Even when Bruges is at it's busiest, it still seems calm and tranquil which is such a positive. To answer your questions, it takes approximately four hours to reach Bruges when I'm driving the distance and there were no negative reviews on the chicken, more on the restaurant's staff!

      I'm really glad you've enjoyed the first part of my travel diary, the second part is up now! :)

      Gabrielle x

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  33. Exploring new cities can definitely be fun. And I feel like I've just explored this city with you. I just loved all of these photos. Thanks for allowing me to travel with you through photos.

    Kia / The House of KTS
    www.houseofkts.com

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    1. I love sharing travel diaries via my blog for exactly that reason! Have a fantastic weekend Kia..

      Gabrielle x

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  34. Loving these shots, lady! I do love getting out and about in a new city- always so much to see!

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Ashley

      Gabrielle x

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  35. what a lovely hotel!
    you look so pretty...love your long hair!

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    1. Oh thank you so much Ivana, you're so sweet!

      Gabrielle x

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  36. Oh wow! Looks like an amazing time. Beautiful architecture and cobblestone streets--I love that! And the food looks delicious!

    xo, Bry

    Swept.Away.to.Positano.Naughty&Nice

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    1. The architecture has to be the main highlight of Bruges, it's so intricate and unusual!

      Gabrielle x

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  37. Great pics, the food looks delicious and the hotel looks really nice too!

    http://www.notesofglam95.blogspot.it/

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    1. Thank you Vanessa, all the food shown in this post was heavenly!

      Gabrielle x

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  38. Ahhh Bruges is a city that is definitely on my list! The photos look amazing - I love the one of you on the bridge, and the buildings there look amazing. Lovely post! - Tasha

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    1. Be sure to keep it there until you visit, it's a wonderful city! Thanks Tasha, that bridge is such a hotspot for tourists.. I was lucky to have one without anyone else around :)

      Gabrielle x

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  39. Great shot of you on the bridge, Gabrielle. I love the cobbles in Bruges, and of course all the chocolates!

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

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    1. Thanks a million Suze, that's a popular spot for tourists!

      Gabrielle x

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  40. it looks like such a cool place, love a good food photo as well!

    danielle | avec danielle // giveaway

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    1. Haha you and me both girl!

      Gabrielle x

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  41. Great pictures

    New post :
    www.miharujulie.com

    ReplyDelete
  42. I'd love to visit Belgium! I did a study abroad in London a few years back and got to travel a bit around Europe, but I never made it to Belgium and am really regretting it. Beautiful photos!

    Kaylee
    Adventures in Everyday Life

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    1. I hope you find the time in the future to stop by Bruges and do some exploring! I love that you studied abroad by the way, that must have been so exciting :)

      Gabrielle x

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  43. Amazing adventure... I wish I could see Bruges!
    Edita
    www.pret-a-reporter.co.uk

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    1. I hope you do in the near future, Edita!

      Gabrielle x

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  44. I'm green with envy ;) I hope you have a wonderful trip!

    Jasmine x
    For a Real Woman

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    1. Haha I'm often that way reading travel diaries! Thank you Jasmine..

      Gabrielle x

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  45. that's a beautiful hotel! hope you had fun :)

    ReplyDelete
  46. Ugh all the food looks gorgeous, and the hotel looks amazing! I just went on a city break in Paris and they are so great aren't they! Looks like Bruges is on my list :)

    India | www.touchscreensandbeautyqueens.com

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    1. Ah, I'm the same.. reaching out to the screen for a cupcake! That sounds fantastic, I hope Paris treated you well :)

      Gabrielle x

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  47. I love the decor in this hotel and the food looks delicious! Bruges looks really pretty, I love towns with cobbled streets :)
    Also I deleted the comment you left on my blog by mistake! I'm really sorry!

    Sarah | sarahanne14.blogspot.com

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    1. The hotel's decor really added a lot to this city break and don't worry about that, it's no problem!

      Gabrielle x

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  48. Beautiful photos, the hotel looked so lovely and lets not get into the food pictures...yum!

    ~ xo Sheree
    http://poshclassymom.com
    IG: @poshclassymom

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Haha it's all about the food! ;)

      Gabrielle x

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  49. Amazing pics!
    Have a nice week!
    Photographer Gil Zetbase
    http://www.gilzetbase.com/

    ReplyDelete
  50. I love exploring new places, I just got home from England and France and it was such an amazing experience to explore. I need to check this city out, your pictures are gorgeous, thanks for sharing!

    XO,

    Meagan

    BLOGLOVIN'
    Hearts of Gold Blog
    Instagram @heartsofgoldblog

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    1. I'm so glad you had a good trip - especially as you visited England! Thanks Maegan, I appreciate you saying so :)

      Gabrielle x

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  51. Oh You were in Belgium! Nice post!
    x Mieke
    Take a chance on winning summer sandals on my blog: http://bit.ly/1R5KcU8

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    1. I was indeed and I had a brilliant time!

      Gabrielle x

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  52. The hotel looks absolutely charming, Gabrielle! Wishing you a fantastic time!

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

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    1. Thanks a million Shireen, I want to be back there haha!

      Gabrielle x

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  53. Replies
    1. Couldn't agree with you more!

      Gabrielle x

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  54. You look like you had so much fun! There is something exciting about visiting a place you've never been before...especially when you do it by yourself. That roast chicken looked amazing- super jealous!

    www.jessandtonic.com

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    1. I agree, although I have visited Bruges many times and I never grow tired of it!

      Gabrielle x

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  55. Marvellous. Bruges would be great to visit again. I want to go to the tea-room now. Such a beautiful and charming city. <3
    /Madison
    Wedding Inspiration

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    1. The tea-room is most definitely worth visiting.. if not only for a tasty slice or two of apple cake!

      Gabrielle x

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  56. Ever since seeing the film "In Bruges", this has been on our list of places to go. I love the architecture and it looks so peaceful.

    Lizzie Dripping

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    1. Ah, someone else has mentioned that film - I'll have to view at some point!

      Gabrielle x

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  57. I have to go to Bruges! Your photos are beautiful, I felt like I was almost there. That's the kind of hotel I like too!

    Leftbankgirl.blogspot.com

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    1. I hope that you do and love it as much as I do!

      Gabrielle x

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  58. Lovely pictures of a lovely place!

    http://industrialbarbie.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  59. I am loving all these photographs. I would feel like I'm in Heaven if I walked into a bathroom like that full of luxurious products.

    Connie | Sponsored by Coffee | Etsy

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    1. It can certainly be a lot of fun working your way through hotel bathroom toiletries!

      Gabrielle x

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  60. Hahaha I totally love people watching as creepy as that may sound.. when my boyfriend and I visited Portland we did that for an hour or so and just ate our snacks.. haha. This hotel is so gorgeous, so I can see why you picked it. That entrance hall is right up my alley and that bathroom! Wow. I'm loving all of your photos!! Keep them coming:-).

    www.wunderbliss.blogspot.ca

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    1. I don't at all blame you, I'm the same way and so the hour you spent people watching with your boyfriend (and snacks) sounds idyllic! Room for one more?! :)

      Gabrielle x

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  61. Bruges, the chocolate city!! I have been a few times and I loved it! Looking forward to see more pictures.
    Btw that's a big meal! Hahaha
    www.travelera.es

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    1. Haha that's how I often see it too.. the chocolate-viison goggles were firmly on my head!

      Gabrielle x

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  62. Everything looks so pretty and amazing! I'm in love with the pictures. You make me want to go traveling, haha

    xxx

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    1. That's the best thing you could have said, Melissa! So glad you enjoyed this post :)

      Gabrielle x

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  63. Hope you enjoyed this city :)
    I always went to school in bruges and loved it !

    www.thefashionpanda.be
    www.thefashionpanda.be

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    1. How lovely that you attended school in Bruges - you lucky thing!

      Gabrielle x

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  64. NICE HOTEL, LOVELY PLACE
    NEW POST: http://melodyjacob1.blogspot.com/2015/06/prom-inspired-makeup.html

    ReplyDelete
  65. The food looks so absolutely delicious, thanks for sharing!

    Prudence
    www.prudencepetitestyle.com

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    1. You're very welcome, have a fantastic weekend Prudence

      Gabrielle x

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  66. I have been waiting for this! Seems like the perfect city break! Love you laid back in that chair too- so cute!
    Can't wait for the second instalment Gabrielle!

    X

    Anjelique

    www.anjelique.com.au

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    1. That's great to hear Anjelique and thanks for your kind words, you're too sweet! The second part is now up :)

      Gabrielle x

      Delete
  67. Lovely pictures, Bruges looks so beautiful I'd really love to visit!!

    The Everyday Life of Rachel

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    1. I really hope you do at some point in the future Rachel, I've no doubt you'd love it!

      Gabrielle x

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  68. Oh it looks like a nice hotel.
    The food looks delicious too and that cupcakess waaahh.
    XO

    Check my new post.
    The Bandwagon Chic | Instagram | Bloglovin

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    1. Mmm, the cupcakes were delicious!

      ps. for some reason both your blog and profile are coming up as unknown/removed?

      Gabrielle x

      Delete
  69. Oh wow - these photos are all gorgeous, I love travelling and visiting new places! I've been to Bruges and loved it but was so put off by how rude the people were - it was so sad to see as that's not how you want to remember a place.

    After seeing your photos though it is pretty tempting to go back and visit, maybe it was just the wrong time to go - I visited near Christmas!?

    Layla xx

    www.sprinklesofstyle.co.uk

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    1. I'm so surprised the people you encountered were rude on your visit, I have always found the local people to be lovely! Having said that, if we're talking about the staff in Zara.. not so much! haha ;)

      ps. hope you're enjoying the influx of sweet-treat photos, Layla!

      Gabrielle x

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  70. These are such beautiful, romantic shots. They make me miss Europe so much! Your blouse is beautiful - stunning as ever!
    http://www.zukiniz.com

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    1. Thank you Zuleika, that's lovely of you to say - I have become increasingly interested in photography lately! Oh thank you, I wish I had this blouse in every colour haha :)

      Gabrielle x

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  71. Beautiful photos! The hotel looks lovely and so does Bruges, and I want to eat all of the food! :) xx

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    1. The hotel was a pleasure to stay at and I don't blame you.. I wouldn't mind another slice of apple cake around about now too!

      Gabrielle x

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  72. I could not agree with you more about how nice it is to revisit locations while traveling. It makes it so much more comforting and familiar!

    Chelsea
    Ginger Side of Life

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    1. It's nice to know you feel the same way Chelsea, it really can be a comfort every once in a while!

      Gabrielle x

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  73. Hi sweetie, beautiful place! looking at your pics is so relaxing! thanks for sharing,
    Glamoury Armory Blog

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    1. That's wonderful to hear, thanks very much!

      Gabrielle x

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  74. Replies
    1. It really is a fantastic place to visit!

      Gabrielle x

      Delete
  75. ahh how am I just reading about your travels now! At least I have two more parts to go through hehe :) The hotel looks amazing! x
    | Life as a Petite || Fashion, Crafts & Lifestyle Blog |

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    1. Haha well it's nice to have you on board now Isabella - I hope you've enjoyed them all! :)

      Gabrielle x

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  76. Amazing pics, I am sure your vacation was fantastic! <3
    Kisses from Ukraine,
    x MS
    Military dress on the Ukrainian Stylish Report

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    1. Thanks Mariia, I really did have a fantastic time!

      Gabrielle x

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  77. I wouldn't mind staying here at all. Its a beautiful place and yummy food. Love it! :)

    missymayification.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this hotel - have a wonderful week!

      Gabrielle x

      Delete
  78. Bruges is one of my favorite city. I think its so charming and romantic as well. I have been there couple times before and your post made me wanna go back again :)) Thanks for sharing your trip.
    http://pancakesinbed.com NYC travel and lifestyle blog

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    1. I can understand why, it really does have something rather charming about it. That's lovely to hear, I'm so glad you've enjoyed this post Veronika :)

      Gabrielle x

      Delete

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