Many people from Belgium and abroad would be only too happy to discover the intriguing history and exceptional architecture of the Law Courts. The Covid-19 pandemic made this no longer possible. As of Saturday 9 April 2022, The Law Courts of Brussels opens its doors to the general public.
I am pleased that the general public will be able to rediscover the history and the exceptional spaces of the Law Courts. This gem has been kept hidden for the last two years but will now be accessible again to the public.Rudi Vervoort, Minister-President of the Brussels Region
Guided tours will be taking place once again in the building so everyone can once again discover the history and exceptional architecture of this mythical building. It is now even possible to register individually for a guided visit with an expert guide. An initiative that will undoubtedly appeal to a wide audience. The federal government, the government of Brussels and the Court of Cassation are joining forces for this purpose.
1. Cooperation project
The request to make the Law Courts more accessible to visitors is not new. Over the course of the past year, the Brussels-Capital Region, on a political level, along with the Court of Cassation, took the initiative of bringing everyone around the table. The Belgian Buildings Agency and the State Secretary in charge of it immediately went along with the story. The Belgian Buildings Agency devised the convention with the practical arrangements. This resulted in a collaboration between the Belgian Buildings Agency, the FPS Justice, the Court of Cassation and the Brussels-Capital Region, that committed €30,000 to carry out the guided tours.
Thanks to the cooperation between the different policy levels, from now on individual visitors can also enjoin a guided tour led by the guide associations Korei Guided Tours and Arkadia, every Wednesday and Saturday.
2. An impressive building
For many Belgians and the people of Brussels, there is something mysterious about the Law Courts and foreign visitors stand in awe upon discovering the size, the architecture and the location of this majestic building. It is one of the most photographed places in our capital, along with the adjacent Place Poelaert, offering a magnificent view over the city.
Everyone knows this emblematic building of Brussels, but only few have ever gone inside. I therefore recommend you climb the stairs to discover this gem of Joseph Poelaert and the view over Brussels from the square that bears his name.Rudi Vervoort, Minister-President of the Brussels Region
“Palais de Justice is part of our collective heritage, although not many people have visited its interior. Let’s change that! In addition to protecting and renovating our heritage, opening iconic buildings is a cornerstone of my heritage policy. That is why I took the initiative to gather everyone involved so that from now on all Brusselers and visitors can discover this landmark,” said Pascal Smet, Brussels State Secretary for Urbanism and Heritage.
With a total surface of approximately 80,000 m², the Law Courts of Brussels is one of the largest courthouses in the world and defines the skyline of the Belgian capital with its 142m high massive dome. On the inside, the reception area, the Salle des Pas Perdus, is approximately 3,600 m² with a compass rose with sixteen ray marks in the centre.
3. Practical information
Korei Guided Tours provides the guided tours in Dutch and English. Arkadia covers the guided tours in French. A visit lasts approximately 1 hour and a half and visitor groups are limited to a maximum of 25 people.
The guided tours with individual registration take place every Wednesday (afternoon) and Saturday (afternoon) as of 9 April 2022. Registration is mandatory via the agencies’ websites: Arkadia, for French, or Korei, for Dutch/English, and the following rates are applicable:
- Wednesday afternoon
- Adults: €13
- Under the age of 26: €10
- Saturday afternoon
- Adults: €16
- Under the age of 26: €12
Guided tours for groups are possible every workday between 10 a.m. and 4.45 p.m., with a maximum of 20 people per group. Registration for a group visit is also mandatory via e-mail to email@example.com (French) or firstname.lastname@example.org (Dutch/English) and the following rates are applicable:
- schools: 100 euros per guided tour;
- non-profit organisations: 150 euros per group;
- profit-organisations: 180 euros per group.