Its fucking 41 degrees in Brussels, what do you expect me to do? Stay locked up in my place with no fan on? Nah nah, time to get my tan on… or unleash my social skill with a cocktail and some good music.
With all the Afterwork drinks organized in Brussels, « Apéro » is how it is socially acceptable to call it, I decided to actually attend as many as I could this year and to just see what the hype is all about. I started with the obvious one that spoke to me the most : « The Island Afterwork ». Fancy shit right?
It is basically a classic Afterwork: understand a DJ, a bar and a food truck, but the catch here is that it is organized in the lounge of a hotel in the European commission. I say Smart emplacement and good visibility.
Lovely Island-like decoration that gives the illusion, especially the cocktail served in a pineapple. Makes you wanna shake your Bam-Bam right?
It is the perfect spot if you like to dress-up to grab a drink, if you need a chill date spot, if you want to have a drink with your girlfriends or between friends and to basically enjoy good African food while listening to the latest (and overused dare I say) Afrobeats and hip hop tunes.
Love the colors they used though for their advertisement. Very tribal like.
What is also great about this Afterwork is that it starts at 6PM and has a very chill almost « New-York rooftop » like vibe, but as soon as the moon starts to shine, it turns into a dancing spot where you can easily find yourself embarked in a twerk contest with a stranger or in a huge Kuduro flashmob.
I will warn you though about 3 things:
- The wait is LOOOOONGG and the line is LOOOONGEEEERRR if you want to grab a drink starting from 9 pm – ish : The more people you see, the bigger the line at the bar and trust me there are no gentlemen when alcohol and drinks are involved. Ladies you are gonna queue, trust me on this one, so better to plan for it or get your drinks earlier on as there will be no service at the table
- The food served there can only be paid in cash actually and sometimes it can be a bit cold if you order it a bit late in the night. There is no bank close by and it will be too bad to miss out on good chicken wings or some plantains because of a bad planning.
- It is still an Afterwork linked to the weather so with bad weather you may find it empty, or even in good weather it may not be that full or not that vibrant. You have to accept this risk or you’ll end-up losing a great night of dancing and meeting new people because you thought it was « too cold » or today you don’t feel like going there
- Last thing: Don’t expect to find a seat or a sitting spot. like every hyped-up event, it gets jam packed very quickly so better to come in advance to squat a spot that you are sure to never leave the whole night unless your friend is there to secure it for you! Bring a book in case of though 😀
As of me, I like to go there to randomly talk to people in the bar at the queue as we are all stuck there waiting might as well dance with strangers and discuss no? Though I noticed that people don’t smile a lot and get scared easily when you approach them , such a shame…
Some practical information for you guys:
- They do have an active Instagram account where they reply fairly quickly : Island Afterwork
- Link to their Facebook page to add the events to your calendar: https://www.facebook.com/islandafterwork/
- It is organized every thursday
- I dont know who is their photographer so don’t ask me
PS: Credit of the pictures to their rightful owners