CMB56 hotel review - Antwerp, Belgium
Antwerp's reputation for creative fertility was developed by the likes of Eddy Jambers, who was dealing in vintage design back when Dries Van Noten was still a nipper. Back in the 1990s, Jambers rented this former hostel, squatting upstairs with friends while running a gallery downstairs with the performance artist Ludo Mich. It was only five years ago that he was able to buy the townhouse and renovate, fixing to the roof one of his more extraordinary finds: an old barge wheelhouse, which now provides views over the River Scheldt. Jambers named the new ground-floor gallery (pictured) CMB58 or Compagnie Magnifek Belge, which needs no translation. These days, Jambers lives on the second floor but rents out the first and third floors, which are outfitted in flamboyant midcentury collectibles (offers welcome) and local art that prompts the odd double take. A horse's head mounted over the balustrade was once attached to a beloved champion racer, a silver-suited astronaut was an old prop of Ludo Mich's, and a seven-foot-tall, fame-red figure is a 1997 work by Jambers' brother, Mark Jambers.