The steeple at Brüsseler Platz, © Timo Klein

Brus­sels Square

Your go-to place for kiosk beer

The Brus­sels Square in the heart of the Bel­gian Quarter in one of the few places in Co­logne with a cer­tain charm and an at­mo­sphere that makes you want to sit in the openair on a sunny even­ing with a beer in your hand. While in the af­ter­noon, on a week­day, maybe two hand­fuls of people pop­u­late the square, on week­ends in the sum­mer, sev­er­al hun­dreds go there. That makes Brus­sels Square the hot­test night­life open-air place in town, but it drives res­id­ents to mad­ness. For many years now, they com­plain about the noc­turn­al noise. At­tempts to me­di­ate between the Ord­nung­samt and party-happy rev­el­ers fail con­stantly. In the even­ings, a fun spec­tacle can be watched as clean­ing crews sweep away the night owls, just to watch them all re­turn shortly there­after.

The reas­on for this is not only the cent­ral loc­a­tion of the Brus­sels Square in the middle of the Bel­gian Quarter, al­though the many pubs around the Aachen­er Straße and the side streets, nu­mer­ous theat­ers and clubs play a role. Above all, Brus­sels Square has been the hot­spot for Co­logne's mu­sic and art scene since the early 1990s. The ed­it­ors of the mu­sic magazine "Spex" had their of­fices only a few streets away and star­ted their long party nights with all their friends in Hall­mack­en­reuth­er, nights that ended at the bar of of the Six Pack. And here in this area of the Brus­sels Square at the be­gin­ning of the 1990s, the "Sound of Co­logne" was cre­ated. This sound turned the city in the 90s with la­bels like a-mu­sik and kom­pakt, re­cord shops like Groove At­tack and kom­pakt (all in walk­ing dis­tance of the square) and his com­puter mu­sic without stars, without chor­uses, without hits in­to a world-fam­ous mecca for elec­tron­ic mu­sic.

Jan St. Wern­er of Mouse on Mars told how this scene evolved:

"At some point I shared a base­ment flat with Georg Odijk and Mar­cus Schmick­ler on Brüssel­er Platz. Then we per­suaded Georg to sort all the mail-or­der stuff in such a way on the shelves that we could open the door once or twice a week. Everything was sor­ted so that not only Georg but also oth­ers could find things, and twice a week we opened our door ? and sud­denly we had a re­cord store. At the same time, there was the re­cord store called De­li­ri­um. It?s a chain, like a kind of mini-techno fran­chise for Ger­many. And at some point, the guys there said: ?We?re go­ing to do our own thing. We?re go­ing to call it Kom­pakt and turn it in­to our own store.? That happened al­most at the same time. And it was sim­il­ar with Kom­pakt and Groove At­tack."

Fur­ther in­form­a­tion:
Brüssel­er Platz, 50674 Co­logne

Ulis Mu­sik­laden:

Bari­ton Live Mu­sic Club:


His­tor­ische Aufführung­s­prax­is:

Zen­trum für Alte Mu­sik:

The atmosphere at Brüsseler Platz, © Ole Löding

All Pop-Spots of Co­logne