The TRAIN HOSTEL project was initially designed to be a normal hostel in a nicely preserved part of
Brussels, near the beautiful late 19 th century Schaerbeek train station.
All changed when the Belgian railway company (SNCB) announced their intention to build a brand new TRAIN museum in the very same station: TRAIN WORLD. We identified the opportunity this created to develop a more FUN project, based on train and a sort of "night at the museum" concept.
We discussed the idea with François Schuiten, a famous Belgian writer and scenographist, with SNCB/NMBS (Belgian railway company) and the local authorities. All of them liked the idea. Then started a long road of conceptualisation, getting authorisations, funds chasing, carriages purchasing, and building…
Fitting authentic railway carriages into and above an 100 year old, existing building, implies
reinforcing existing foundations and building structure. It also involves an innovating architectural approach for an expected striking effect. François Schuiten and SNCB are the key partners in this development. The decoration is based on authentic industrial antique material. The funding and running of the operation is 100% private.