THE ABANDONED VILLA IN BELGIUM
The original owner of ‘Villa Chopin’ was one of the best cellists of the 19th century, Adrien Servais. Jean-Pierre Cluysenaer was the architect of this villa in Halle, Belgium.
In 1847 Servais and his wife moved into this villa. Later, his son-in-law, a sculptor, made the bas-reliefs on the facade. The family received regular musicians and artists such as Franz Liszt, Antonin Rubinstein and Berthold Damcke. Also Polish composer Frédéric Chopin spent the night at the villa during one of his European tours. Chopin was well known for his virtuoso Nocturnes, Preludes, and Études.
The cellist died in the 1960s, but his music is still performed all over the world. The family left the villa in 1886. After that, it was rebuild as a police station and later a school. In 1987, the villa became a protected monument. Today it is in a bad state, only the facade and the beautiful frescos in the hallway remind us of the rich history. I visited ‘Villa Chopin’ in 2011.