The Belgian pavilion was designed by Patrick Genard & Asociados, in collaboration with architect Marc Belderbos and construction contractors Besix - Vanhout. It was inspired by the urban planning concept 'Lobe City'. It symbolises, in a scale model, an ideal urban organisation of the future, consisting of a centre and peripheral districts separated by green entrances that oxygenate the city.
Limiting energy and water consumption and choosing natural and recyclable materials: nothing has been left to chance in order to make this pavilion a coherent eco-sustainable building.
A short guided tour:
One enters the pavilion through a first space, called the Farm, alluding to our traditional farms. Visitors can then discover what Belgium and its 3 regions are and what the country can offer in terms of innovative food solutions.
The décor in which visitors move around is reminiscent of this land, especially the famous Belgian beers, through a wall of stylised bottles. This part of the pavilion also features Belgian celebrities of Italian origin.
This is also where you can watch live demonstrations by leading chocolate makers.
Visitors then go down to the basement, to the Cellar, a living laboratory where they can discover techniques such as aquaponics and alternative food sources such as algae, insects and wild plants. The products from these crops are also used in the restaurant's kitchen.
The visitor then climbs the spiral glass staircase (a reference to DNA, the symbol of life) to reach the heart of the pavilion, the Atrium, a glass geode that refers to the Royal Greenhouses of Laeken. In this relaxing space, visitors can taste the country's specialities in the restaurant, refresh themselves in the Birra Belga or watch culinary demonstrations.
The piazza in front has been designed to invite visitors to come and relax with a drink, eat a chip or a waffle, or simply enjoy the outdoor activities organised in the amphitheatre.