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Are you ready to discover the best things to do in Lille, France? Look no further! Our Coliving Residence Manager, Louise, who is an expert on the city, has created a list of must-see places, from the best restaurants, bars, and cafes to unique experiences that will give you a taste of the vibrant Lille lifestyle. Whether you’re a new resident in our coliving or just visiting, Lille has something special to offer you. 

Lille is known for its charming architecture, delicious cuisine, and lively atmosphere. Take a stroll through the historic Old Town and marvel at the beautiful Flemish-style buildings. Indulge in some of the local specialties such as traditional “carbonnade” or “potjevleesch” and enjoy a glass of local beer in one of the many cozy bars and cafes.

For culture enthusiasts, Lille offers a wide range of museums, art galleries, and theatres, such as the Palais des Beaux-Arts, one of the most important museums in France outside of Paris, or the Opera House, which is considered one of the most beautiful in Europe.

Experience the local nightlife and catch a live music performance at one of the many bars and clubs in the city center. 

For a unique experience, why not take a day trip to the nearby Belgian towns of Ypres, Bruges, and Ghent, which are just a short train ride away? Wondering how to do that from Lille? Take a look at this blog for more details on how to make this trip a reality. 

Make the most of your time in Lille by inviting your fellow colivers to join you on your journey of discovery. Whether it’s trying new restaurants, visiting local landmarks, or exploring the city’s nightlife, there’s always more fun to be had when shared with friends.

It is time to get ready to experience the best of Lille with our curated list of must-visit restaurants, bars, cafes, and unique experiences. 

Restaurants
Octopus

The dining atmosphere in Octopus will drive you in, but their cuisine will keep you coming back. They offer original dishes and recommend you begin with some starters and later one main octopus dish. If you take a look at their unique wine list, you will find local/small producers that may end up being your new favorite.

Location:  2 Pl. Sébastopol, Lille, France 

Bloempot

In Bloempot offers dishes that stay close to their origin. Made local with organic and wild farming, you know you are in for a treat. When you arrive you have the opportunity to choose from the ‘experience menu’ which allows you to have your “eyes closed” and have the chefs take over and choose what it is you will be enjoying that evening or or you may ‘stay in control’ and decide on your own. This is an added element that can excite people as soon as they are seated, which we are a huge fan of.

Location:  22 Rue des Bouchers, Lille, France

Estaminet Au Vieux de la Vieille

Estaminet Au Vieux de la Vieille is known for their welcoming staff, setting, and selection. Their prices are very reasonable, and it is here where you will be savouring the typical dishes of Hauts de France. If you are interested in visiting them, be sure to book in advance, they are usually full which of course is always extremely promising! 

Location: 2 Rue des Vieux Murs, Lille, France

Restaurant Sébastopol

If you are interested in perfectly pairing wine with your meals, Restaurant Sébastopol is the place to visit. The staff is extremely friendly and have exquisite taste in wine, we suggest you ask for recommendations to match each course to highlight your tastebuds.

Location: 1 Pl. Sébastopol, Lille, France

Bars
Artchives 

What a location! If you are looking for an experience that has it all, in Artchives you will find yourself in a bar, restaurant, and art gallery! We suggest you grab one of the drinks at the bar (known for being very generous) and explore. We must also mention that their signature cocktails are very original. Overall the experience is chic, and unique. We are sure you will enjoy yourself.

Location: 74 Rue Jacquemars Giélée, Lille, France

La Biche & Le Renard

La Biche & Le Renard is a well-known cool little bar in Lille. Known for their incredible craft beer selection, their staff is extremely knowledgeable and are there to help guide you through the variety of savours they offer. 

Location: 14 Rue de Gand, Lille, France

Quai Des Bananes

Quai Des Bananes is overall a small spot in the heart of Lille, but their menus are huge! Their cocktails list is so extensive, you will have difficulty choosing, meaning you will simply have to come back to try more next time! 

Location: 84 Rue Royale, Lille, France

Delirium Café

One of the most essential bars in Lille, is Delirium Café. Here you will have a choice of 500+ beers from all over the world, it’s quite the experience. The decor within the bar is captivating. You may choose from seating in their heated terrace or within the deep decor!

Location: 50 Rue Masséna, Lille, France

Cafés

Elizabeth’s Tea Rooms

We have written but the cafes of Lille in another article, but because we live in Europe and coffee is essential, we wanted to bring some key partners back and recommend them to you at least one more time. Elizabeth’s Tea Room is a cute little cafe located right behind the corner of what most believe to be the most beautiful streets of the city. They offer some delicious pastries, made fresh every day, and gluten-free options as well.

Location: 69-71 Rue Basse, Lille, France

Pâtisserie Méert

Méert is the oldest coffee shop in the city, making it extremely well-known! It is here where you will find Ladurée of waffles which are a must-try. “Whether for the taste buds and also for the pupils, everything is beautiful and delicious”. 

Location: 25-27 Rue Esquermoise, Lille, France

La Clairière

If you are looking for a vegan brunch in the city, La Clairière is your spot. The staff is friendly, the food portions are outstanding and the value for your money will turn you into a regular. 

Location: 75 Bd de la Liberté, Lille, France

Briocherie Sylvana

Discover the flavor of the moment of the brioche every week at Briocherie Sylvana. They offer superb coffee and delicious sweets in a beautifully decorated space. One of the must-go spots in the city of Lille. 

Location: 24 Bd Victor Hugo, Lille, France

Experiences

Le Zénith

The indoor arena, Le Zénith in Lille will be holding 69 concerts in 2023 that you should definitely look out for. Do not be worried about where your seat is, all who attend have explicitly mentioned that there is not one bad seat in the house. The arena is also very easy to get to from any part of Lille. 

Location: 1 Bd des Cités Unies, Lille, France

Gare Saint Sauveur

For alternative music and cultural events, you must visit Gare Saint Sauveur. The company organizes plenty of exhibitions throughout the year for the citizens of Lille to enjoy, and some events are even free, so keep an eye out!

Location: 17 Bd Jean-Baptiste Lebas, Lille, France

Wazemmes Market (Marche de Wazemmes)

Experience a sea of colors and smells on your next Sunday morning in Lille in the Marche de Wazemmes. You will be able to purchase fresh local produce as well as clothing and accessories like other markets often have such as El Rastro in Madrid. Marche de Wazemmes is where you will find the real Lilloise.

Location: Pl. Nouvelle Aventure, Lille, France

Palais des Beaux Arts 

Within Palais des Beaux Arts, one of the largest art museums in France you will find fine art, modern pieces, and antiques. The exhibitions are temporary which is great, allowing you the opportunity to immerse yourself in many collections.

Location: Place de la République, Lille, France

You might be moving to Lille and are excited to make it your new home but also a little nervous about what’s to come. This article is to make you feel confident with your decision of moving into Urban Campus Saint So’ Lille Coliving. We will explain all that you will find in your new apartment or studio, how it is that you will have your friends literally at your doorstep, the cool spaces you will be making memories in, and just how easy this whole move is going to be!

What is inside your new home? – Apartments, Standard & Mezzanine Studios 

In Urban Campus Lille Coliving you have the option of moving into a one-bedroom apartment, standard studio, or mezzanine studio. All are completely furnished and equipped. What exactly does this mean? Upon arrival, you will not have to purchase anything. At Urban Campus our spaces are “toothbrush ready” and we pride ourselves on that. Your private unit will have everything from plates, glasses, mugs, wine glasses, teatowels, kitchen appliances including a microwave, toaster, coffee press, a bed, pillows, duvet, side table, hangers, cleaning supplies, and even some decor to make you feel right at home. The list goes on and on, but we recommend prior to purchasing anything for your new flat, on the first day you should explore every drawer there is. We are sure you will not be disappointed.

What are common spaces? 

Aside from having your newly renovated apartment, you will have access to 300 sqm of common areas. Why do we have this? We have comfortable shared spaces so that you are encouraged to have more encounters with your colivers, for you to truly feel like you are part of a community. This is why in Lille Saint So’ Coliving you will find; a coworking space to step away from your desk at home, a fitness area equipped with everything you need to be healthy, an additional shared kitchen to encourage you to spend time with your fellow colivers and share a delicious meal, a cinema room for the ultimate experience, a lounge to have the space to chill, a terrace to enjoy the beautiful outdoors, and a laundry room.

COMMON KITCHEN
Coworking
Fitness

What is included? 

There are plenty of things that are included in the monthly rental. For example; wifi and all utilities are included, meaning water, heating, and electricity – you won’t have to worry about it! Which gives our colivers peace of mind. The maintenance of your flats is also included, so if something happens you can tell our support team right away. Weekly cleaning of the common areas and monthly cleaning of your private unit is also included. If you wish to have the cleaning done bi-weekly, or once a week you can let our team know and an additional service charge will be added each month. The best part of “everything included” would definitely be the community events we hold. The activities our Head of Community puts together can vary every month, but they are designed for you to turn your neighbors from strangers into friends. You will also have a monthly dinner sponsored by Urban Campus for the entire building. If you are curious about what some community events may be, take a look at our Instagram!

We are extremely excited for you to join our Lille coliving community! In Madrid, we have had people in our spaces build genuine friendships, some have become partners, not only in business but also in love. Coliving is to bring like-minded individuals together, to provide you with the best service possible and for the ultimate convenience when moving to a new flat.

Are you ready now?

The Christmas Market in Lille is one of the most beautiful in the Hauts-de-France region. This year it will be running from November 18th until December 30th. There is something truly special about the way the shops are decorated and building facades rise over the city. As their people say, “la joie de vivre” can be found everywhere during this time of year. So, if you are in the area, whether it be for tourism or to explore the city that your future coliving will be in, you will not want to miss passing through this wonderful market. 

As always, Lille’s Christmas Market is located in the lovely Place Rihour, in the heart of the historical center.

Every year approximately 90.000 visitors come to admire the beautiful lights and scenery.  So this is your chance to sip on the delicious, but very hot mulled-wine offered at almost every other booth to keep you warm throughout your stroll. You may even want to pair it with a toasty Belgian waffle to really get in the mood. 

Within the market, there are 90 chalets that offer an array of products. You can buy beautiful hand-crafted items that are both local and international to buy for your loved ones this holiday season. 

We recommend that you do not miss out on the experience of climbing to the top of the “Grand Roue” (Big Wheel), installed in the Grand Place (known as the main square of Lille). Once you reach the peak, you will see an incredible view of the whole town. 

For those of you who believe in the spirit of Christmas, head to Theatre square. There you will find the Santa Village, full of Christmas decor. 

If you are looking for a little more excitement, every Friday night while the market is on, the town organizes live concerts from 18 – 20H. Every year there are extra activities set up by the community members, however, most are surprises so you will have to go and check it out! 

 

Lille Christmas Market Schedule: 

Running From: November 18th to December 30th, 2022

Weekly Hours:
Monday to Thursday: 11 AM to 20:30 H 
Friday & Saturday: 10 AM to 22 H
Sunday: 11 AM to 20:30 H 
Closed on December 24th from 18 H
Closed on December 25th all-day
 

It is time to explore the city of Lille, and what would be a better way than to start by discovering their coffee shops? From vegan-friendly to most local and traditional, as well as those known for their specialties, we know it all.


The Most Traditional: Aux Merveilleux de Fred

This beautiful cafe opened its doors in 1997. It began in Lille, and is now in various cities around the world due to the fame it received from its very first shop. Aux Merveilleux de Fred is three set locations in Lille that you can choose from, but the closest to the Urban Campus Saint So’ Coliving would be 15 minute metro ride to Montebello.

Nothing makes it feel more real than watching your baked goods be made right in front of you. When you visit, be sure to peak through the window so you can admire the pastry cooks doing their signature “Merveilleux cake”.

You must try the “Le Merveilleux”, which is a pastry composed of meringue domes and their secret cream. This particular pastry has many different flavors you can choose from; speculoos, coffee, vanila, and chocolate. 

Location: Aux Merveilleux de Fred, 336 Rue Léon Gambetta

The Most Local: Cafés Méo

Cafés Méo began in the 1920’s, in the North of France. It is the very first company specialized in high quality coffee beans. They opened their first location also in Lille in 1928. A spectacular place to visit, and worth purchasing a bag of their coffee beans to take home.

Location: 5 Pl. du Général de Gaulle

The Most Vegan Friendly: La Clairière

La Clairière has vegan, local and organic food (and bonus – they are pet friendly).

This coffee shop is a real reference in Lille for whoever wants to eat healthy in a cozy environment. Doesn’t this description just “scream” brunch to you? That’s right – its the place to be every Sunday.

Location: 75 Bd de la Liberté

The Most British: Elizabeth’s 

The name may have given it away, but this coffee shop is known for its various home-made British and American pastries (brownies, shortbread and of course, cookies). If you’re new to town you must try their scones with salted better and pair it with a hot cup of tea. 

It is important to note that Elizabeth’s is very small, but that is what makes it so unique.  

Location: 69-71 Rue Basse

The Closest: Café Augustin 

We believe that knowing the closest coffee shop to your new home is equally as important to the others. Within 5 minutes from the coliving you can find a quaint little café to have that mini escape. Café Augustin is very diverse, you can easily find yourself remote working, attending one of the workshops they offer, or even listening to some live music – all while eating delicious homemade food. 

Location: 57 Rue de Valenciennes

The Most Coffee-Oriented: Coffee Makers

In case you are a coffee fanatic, this is the place for you as it is both a coffee shop and coffee roaster. Coffee Makers is a great place to start the day and enjoy some of their delicious cinnamon toast. Looking for something a little more healthy? Ask for their homemade granola – for 11€ you can pair it with fresh fruit juice and a hot drink.

Location: 151 Rue Pierre Mauroy

The Best for Cheesecakes: Oxalis & Bergamote

Most likely this could be one of the most important places of the city. Oxalis & Bergamote’s high-quality pastries and cuisine is located in a refined place. Lillois (people from Lille) go here, so you know if the locals go, it’s for a reason. 

Location: 44 Rue d’Angleterre

The Trendiest : L’impertinente

L’impertinente auto-proclaims themselves as a “Pony-club” instead of a coffees shop. It is even visible in their entrance and Instagram “The only Pony-club in Lille that sells cakes!”

If you understand and speak French, they also have a lot of funny sentences inside their coffee cups, they are often puns, based on French proverbs. 

This trendy shop has two locations in Lille, however, you can also order their pastries and many other items directly from their website. 

Location: 9 Bd Papin

The Most Specialized: Briocherie Sylvana 

If you love the comforting smell of a homemade brioche that just came out from the oven, this is the place to be. Briocherie Sylvana offer’s a large choice of salted and sweet brioches, tasty babkas, and gourmet breads.  

Location: 24 Bd Victor Hugo

The Oldest: Meert 

Mentioned in all the touristic guides of the world, Meert 1677 is the oldest coffee shop in Lille. It is its luxury service and delicious vanilla fine waffles that made the reputation of the house. We will warn you that you will most definitely have to wait in a queue with the tourists, but this is worth it. 

Location:  25-27 Rue Esquermoise