What is(are) your name(s)?
Mrs Maaiken Steens
For how long have you been running a B&B?
Please share something about the history of your present bed and breakfast.
I started in 1994 providing accommodation for university students and International Erasmus Interchanging for students. The actual B&B business started in 2004. I decided to run a B&B to meet people from the whole world here in my cosy house. My husband and I, we have no children and lodging young families is a great joy for us.
What are the unique characteristics of your B&B?
My B&B is very particular, a very special architectural house "carpediem". My husband, a retired teacher in history, may provide, if wanted, information about Brussels Grand-place and other sites to visit. I am a retired musician and now I like to stay home and to have guests in the house. I welcome my guests with a typical regional artisan beer "Lindemans-Kriek" and I enjoy serving delicious breakfasts in my private dinner-room. I became the official nomination HORECA AWARDS 2009: classification for the better B&B in Flanders, Belgium.
Based on your guests' opinions, what feature of your B&B has made their stay special?
My guests enjoy especially the calmness in the house and the the beautiful green belt around Brussels here. They like our typical Bruges style house, the beautiful dressed morning table with the delicious and fresh breakfast food. Guests are impressed by the typical Bruges style cosy villa and they enjoy their stay in this special architectural Flemish house where several languages are spoken. The parking place for the cars is in our private drive-in and gives a feeling of security during the stay of our guests. The supermarket and a few little shops are at 300 m. Several restaurants are nearby.
Please describe in short your bed and breakfast and its general services and amenities.
My B&B received the official Nomination HORECA AWARDS 2009 in Flanders Belgium. On my website you may read about the meaning of this award. Guests have access to the garden and the covered patio with garden seats and table. If wanted, in cold and wet weather, there is possibility to do sauna-therapy for wellness, which costs extra. There are tourist maps, brochures and folders to visit the surrounding and the Museum of Central Africa situated at 2 km in Tervuren.
How many rooms are offered at your B&B and what is its maximum capacity?
There are 2 comfortable guest rooms. Sheets and towels are included.
What kinds of rooms do you offer?
The green room on the 1st floor has a very comfortable double bed in "King William" style. The rose romantic studio is on the 2nd floor, under the roof, more separated of the house-people. There is a wash table with warm and cold water in both rooms as well as Internet connection (cable and WI-FI), TV and well equipped kitchenette. Both rooms are suitable for families. Discounts are available for a longer stays. It is very quiet and peaceful in the house. The birds in the garden wake you up in spring and summertime. The lady of the house is also helpful and will meet you on the airport or the metro-station with her car.
Please describe the in-room facilities for each type of room in your B&B.
Both rooms have central heating and a wash table with warm and cold water, TV set, tea and coffee making facilities. Several windows can be opened. The green room has a kitchenette and the romantic studio has a separate well-equipped kitchen and ironing facilities. The bathroom is a shower-room with djerba bath, an upper shower and a hand-shower. The bathroom is on the 1st floor, near the green room. Bath robes, hairdryers and shower gel are provided. The sauna cabin is in the shared bathroom. Often there is only 1 room in occupation and in that case there is a private bathroom.
Which room is your personal favorite?
I like both of my rooms. For people older than 55 years, the green room is excellent because it is on the first floor. The rose romantic studio is on the second floor and the children like it very much. It is very spacious - 46 sq.m + 20 sq.m. separate kitchen.
What do the room rates include?
The room rates include Internet, residence tax, parking, insurance CR. Breakfast, sauna and using the kitchen in the studio cost extra.
Do you offer any special packages?
We offer special packages on big holidays such as Christmas, Easter, New Year's Eve. We also offer a loyalty card (-10% room price) starting on the 2nd day of stay. Children under 6 years stay free.
What may guests expect from a typical breakfast at your property?
Breakfast isn't compulsory. It is served in the private dining-room for an additional price. It includes fresh orange juice, boiled egg or omelet, Flemish cheese-slices, fruit-jam, sandwiches, coffee, Flemish butter biscuits, white and dark breads, butter, yogurt. Fresh-made coffee or tea (green tea, Darjeeling, English breakfast tea. etc.). In every room are provided self-service coffee and tea facilities for free.
When and where is breakfast served?
Normal breakfast time: served between 08.00 h and 09.00 h and on Sundays between 08.00 h and 10.00 h. It is served only in the private dining-room, but it is possible for children to take breakfast in their pajamas in case of exclusive use. In the summertime, breakfast can be served at the covered garden-terrace.
Are dietary needs accommodated?
People with dietary requirements have to inform us at least one day prior to their stay. We will cater for one's specific dietary needs without additional payment. We usually don't include meat in our breakfast and if wanted, it has to be paid.
Do you serve other meals?
Are there cooking facilities, which guests may use?
Yes. The Green room has a kitchenette for warming up meals and also table facilities, fridge, plates, microwave, coffee maker and water boiler. The Rose studio has a well equipped full-kitchen and table-facilities, fridge, plates, microwave, grill-oven, coffee maker, water boiler, electric wok. There is an additional fee for using the kitchen.
Is your bed and breakfast suitable for children?
I may accommodate children of all ages. There is a double children bed and a baby-bed for children up to five years of age in the separate room annexed to the rose studio.
Do you accept pets?
We don't accept pets. I'll inform for facilities in the surrounding.
What is your smoking policy?
No smoking in the house. Smoking corner in the covered garden-terrace available.
Is there a parking facility on premises or nearby?
Parking places in the drive-in of the house. Street-parking available: a dead end street, very calm and away from the main street.
Is your B&B suitable for disabled guests?
No, not suitable for disabled people.
What safety precautions are provided at your B&B?
Smoke and carbon monoxyde alarms, 2 fire extinguishers, 1 fire-blanket. Fire-ladder in the rose studio.
What is your check-in/check-out policy?
Check-in from 17.00, check-out by 11.00 am. Agreements possible upon prior notice.
Are there a minimum number of nights for staying at your B&B?
No supplements for 1 night stay.
How can guests check availability and make a reservation?
Check availability by email, by phone. Confirming reservation by email. Prepayment of 10% of the total cost by post or bank transfer. No credit cards, no checks, only cash payments for the additional 90% of the total cost.
What is you cancellation policy?
If cancelled and no other guest rents the room, the 10% are not refunded.
What types of payment do you accept?
No credit cards, no checks. The 10% confirmation can be made by post or bank transfer for the 10%. Cash payment at check-in for the rest 90%.
Is there a special etiquette that guests should know about and comply with?
When it rains or snows, guests have to take off their wet shoes because inside there is a wooden ground covering. Wet umbrellas and wet coats also stay in the entrance hall of the house. My property is situated in a residential area with good people, sporty clothing is also appropriate.
Please tell us what things guests might enjoy visiting, seeing, doing, etc. in your area.
Surrounding: Royal Museum for Central Africa at 2 km distance TERVUREN and Tervuren Arboretum, Parc+Lake. The Grand-place of Brussels Center - Brussels Atomium - Mini-Europe: at max 10 km metro connection. The medieval city of Brugge is at 85 km, the University city of Leuven is at 17 km with a train & bus connection. Antwerp Zoo and Mondial Fish Aquarium: at 37 km. Attraction Walibi Parc: at 22 km. Swimming Poles Overijse, Woluwe, Zaventem at 6 km. Brussels Airport at 6 km. The Nord Sea Coast at 110 km. Paris may b reached by Thalys train. London is reached by Eurostar train or shuttle.
Where is your B&B located and how it may be reached?
My B&B is situated in the Green Belt of Brussels at 8 km from the Brussels Center (Grand-place), at 6 km from Brussels Airport Zaventem. See on my personal website page "Routes" how to reach by car and by public transport (airport, train and metro). www.nieuwlijsternest.be
What would you say to people who have never stayed in a bed and breakfast?
Welcome: be our guest in the New Trushnest!
Is there something more that you want to share about your property?
Children only staying with the parents or a nanny. Children may not stay alone in the rooms or in the bathroom.