P1509 VDD The Grand Nieuwpoort Cam Cabins HR 20201218

Contact

info@thegrand.be

Address

Zeedijk 10
Hendrikaplein 1-9
Albert I-Laan 112
8620 Nieuwpoort
P1509 VDD The Grand Nieuwpoort Cam Cabins HR 20201218
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The Grand hendrikaplein shopped v1
1924

An eclectic style
with a Beaux Arts twist
and Art Deco accents

In 1924, the Societé Anonyme de Nieuport Bains tasked the Brussels architect Apollon Lagache (1882-1940) to design and build two prestigious buildings, namely the ‘Grand Hôtel’ and ‘Le Petit Casino’. He opted for an eclectic style with a Beaux-Arts look and feel and Art Deco accents. Both buildings towered above the other buildings, framing the skyline of Nieuwpoort-Bad.

‘Le Grand Hôtel’ to the left and ‘Le Petit Casino’ to the right on the beachfront of Nieuwpoort-Bad.
‘Le Grand Hôtel’ to the left and ‘Le Petit Casino’ to the right on the beachfront of Nieuwpoort-Bad.
1929-1940

A PRESTIGIOUS HOTEL

The “Grand Hôtel” was completed in 1929, whereas “Le Petit Casino” remained unfinished during the interwar period. Initially the hotel was a big success, largely because of the tram line from Ostend to De Panne. Like all high-end hotels of the 1920s, “Le Grand Hotel” had a number of public spaces that could be accessed from the entrance hall. The dining room led to the salon, bar and smoking room. The hotel also had a long loggia that gave out onto Hendrikaplein. The dining room was a large room with columns and parquet floors, with huge bay windows offering a stunning view of the sea. The salon’s round shape was accentuated by the columns that supported the tower above it.

The majestic grand staircase
The majestic grand staircase
The large dining room with a sea view
The large dining room with a sea view
The round salon
The round salon
The bar and smoking room
The bar and smoking room
1940 - 1945

Turbulent war years

From 13 May 1940, the ‘Grand Hôtel’ was used as an army hospital to tend to Belgium’s wounded soldiers. On 15 May, Queen Elisabeth visited the soldiers. During WWII, the building suffered heavy damage, destroying the iconic tower, domes, flagpoles, the loggia on the side of Hendrikaplein, the canopy and the corner terrace.

1946 - Damage including the flattened roofs, the amputated tower, the damaged façades and windows and the destroyed loggia.
1946 - Damage including the flattened roofs, the amputated tower, the damaged façades and windows and the destroyed loggia.
Sixties

Holiday residence

From 1958 until 1963, the building was used as a holiday residence and renamed the ‘White Residence’. The layout of the former hotel was partly reorganised and redesigned, merging existing rooms in addition to installing additional bathrooms and new kitchens. Many valuable elements disappeared during this first restoration.

Sixties - present

A MONUMENT IN DECAY

From the sixties onwards, the building deteriorated due to a lack of structural maintenance. The distinctive outline of this once renowned, magnificent Art Deco building was lost and overshadowed by the scale of the surrounding buildings as the city grew. The roof landscape looks decapitated and the ground floor level has been disfigured. The building has been stripped of its yesteryear aura and function as a historic beacon. Moreover, it has since become unusable, as it no longer meets the current safety, energy and usage requirements. The maintenance and cost management are a disaster. In the summer of 2018, the property was declared a fire and safety hazard and closed to the public. The monument has fallen into disrepair. The time has come for a renovation.

Present - 2024

The Grand

VDD Project Development, which specialises in the development of historic sites, acquired the building and is undertaking a comprehensive renovation of the ‘Grand Hôtel’ or ‘White Residence’. The company’s intention is to restore this monument to its former grandeur and reopen it, under its new name ‘The Grand’, in time for its centenary. The property development company has drawn up an ambitious renovation plan in collaboration with David Chipperfield Architects (UK), the Brussels restoration architects Origin, the Flanders Heritage Agency and the Municipality of Nieuwpoort. The plans for this unique restoration project have since been submitted.

Find out more about this project »

After the renovation
After the renovation
Screenshot 2021 01 11 at 14 11 43