Gruuthusemuseum in Bruges Reopens after Five Years of Restoration

After a five-year closure, the renovated Gruuthusemuseum opened its doors on 25 May 2019. The imposing city palace in the heart of Bruges closed in 2014 for a complete renovation and restoration. New rooms, a new museum concept and a magnificent collection can now be visited.

The reopened Gruuthusemuseum Photo: Sarah Bauwens (courtesy of the museum)

The reopened Gruuthusemuseum
Photo: Sarah Bauwens (courtesy of the museum)

Lodewijk van Gruuthuse, who gave the city palace its grandeur, lived in accordance with the motto ‘Plus est en vous’  (there is more in you). This also instructs how we should view the collection today. Majestic tapestries, colorful stained glass windows, elegant wooden sculptures, historic lace, Burgundian manuscripts and Chinese porcelain; each one of these objects has a unique story which brings three periods of Bruges’ rich history to life.

Lodewijk van Gruuthuse's motto ‘Plus est en vous’ (there is more in you) Photo: Sarah Bauwens (courtesy of the museum)

Lodewijk van Gruuthuse’s motto ‘Plus est en vous’ (there is more in you)
Photo: Sarah Bauwens (courtesy of the museum)

The new pavilion at the courtyard of the museum Photo: Inge Kinnet (courtesy of the museum)

The new pavilion at the courtyard of the museum
Photo: Inge Kinnet (courtesy of the museum)

For the renovation project, the City of Bruges decided to opt for a total approach. As part of the new museum site, a brand-new contemporary pavilion has been erected between the Gruuthusemuseum and the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk (Church of Our Lady), where in future Musea Bruges will not only sell tickets for both sites, but also for all other Musea Brugge locations in the city. The preservation and enhancement of the city’s monumental heritage, by removing ticket sale facilities from both monuments, was one of the most important objectives of the project.

Photo’s: Jan D’hondt (courtesy of the museum)

The varied collection of the Gruuthusemuseum includes a large and important collection of textiles such as historic lace, tapestries, and costumes. In 2017, Aleid Hemeryck and Inge Geysen, wrote about extraordinary textile collection for the CODART eZine. An Innovative Presentation of Lace in a Renewed Gruuthusemuseum is avalable in eZine 9 (summer 2017).

More information about the Gruuthusemuseum is available at the museum website.