My favourite Court



During my first years as a lawyer in the 70ies, this was a house of mystery. The ‘Juge d’instruction’ had his offices there, but you could not assist at the interrogation of your client. Visits were a respectful, and questions seldom answered. However some diplomacy could offer a glimpse in the turn of a procedure, sometimes the light in the tunnel. The building was symbolic of justice then: an splendid place, but a ruin if you consider comfort. I remember seeing the room under my feet through the cracks of the the wooden floor. Even if secrecy prevailed, no door closed properly, not even the double doors.  After it was sold to a bank, its old splendor was restored in meticulous detail. Now it serves as a prestigious reception and conference location for the Bruges Harbour Authority (MBZ) and Voka.

At ‘Open Momument Day’ 2010 the first chance ever was given to “publicly” visit it in decades, with authorisation of a photo shoot. I was one of the very happy few, and enjoyed every moment in it.

Welcome to the residence of André-Louis van den Bogaerde (1726 - 1799) mayor of the ‘Franc de Bruges’, a “bastion of the aristocracy” (Jean Van Cleven, La Maison de Caese du Franc de Bruges, modèle de l’art de vivre au XVIIIe siècle, Maisons d’hier et aujourd’hui 1999).


Harbour House De Caese