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to art or shop in Antwerp?? Why, let's do both!

This week I was able to sneak over to Antwerp TWICE and it was fantastic! Antwerp is known for it's fashion industry, and with that carries a healthy vibe of all things indie and artistic. yes, please. The first day, the hubs and I met for lunch at The Horta Cafe , which is housed in an art nouveau masterpiece by Victor Horta. Champagne for lunch: check, architechtural gem: check, then 25 steps from early 17thc barouque painter Ruben's house and studio: check. He had to head back to work, kids were in school, so I took the opportunity to geek out at Ruben's house by myself. Ahh.... it reminded me of a previous trip to London before kids, where the hubs had to work, so I tagged along. It was January (aka, FLIPPIN COLD), but i had the most spectacular time geeking out in the British library over ancient illuminated manuscripts and taking guided literary walks until I could no longer feel my limbs. I was in English Lit/History major heaven! So, fast forward 14 years, and here I saunter, on a Wednesday afternoon.. just me and 450 years of history. Score! Peter Paul Rubens was a Flemish Baroque painter (1577-1640) that achieved success in his lifetime. He built this residence (one of several), in Antwerp and it still survives. There are some period furnishings, and a fair amount of art and sculptures. The perfect little spot for an hour of art and history on a drizzly Wednesday, kidless afternoon ;) I wasn't allowed to take photos inside (I realized that after I took the photo of his self-portrait).. so that's why you're seeing mostly outdoor shots.

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