In the neighbourhood: Strassen
Tucked between the forests of Bambësch, and the communes of Belair and Bertrange, Strassen or Stroossen is one of the smallest communes in Luxembourg.
Despite its size, there are more than 9,885 residents representing 115 nationalities giving it a distinctly international flavour. Its ideal location (close to two motorway junctions), with plenty of forests, parks, and restaurants, is reflected in the high property prices.
As it is on one of the main arteries into Luxembourg, traffic congestion is a big issue, but it's well served by public transport and it has a village feel despite its close proximity to the City.
A little background...
Strassen was formed in 1851 when it was detached from the commune of Bertrange, but the origins of the town date back to Roman times. The name Strassen comes from the Latin word 'strata' which means military road, the main road running from Trier to Arlon, the remains of which were found near Kiem Street. In the 18th century the population of Strassen was just 417, and in the 1850s the area saw emigration to the United States. For the one hundred years up to 1946 the population remained static at about 1,400 citizens, but in recent times it has grown exponentially.
You can find out more about Strassen's history and coat of arms here. Engineer Paul Barble hails from Strassen and built many constructions from bridges, to radio transmitters and factories in Luxembourg. You can find out more about him here.
Due to its attractive location, property prices in this suburb can be as high as in Luxembourg City. According to Wort Immo the current price per square metre of real estate in the area is:
Apartment (old) €7,631
Apartment (new) €12,242
House (old) €8,398 (price from Liser)
Shopping & Services
For grocery shopping you'll find a Delhaize and a Lidl on Route d'Arlon, but if you're after some tea and crumpets try the Home from Home store, which stocks expat delicacies from the UK, Ireland, South Africa, America and Australia. The Deli Traiteur provides prepared dishes and the Pall Centre has a grocery store outlet, as does frozen food store Picard.
For something a bit special locals can try the Eventum urban delicatessen which in addition to soups, salads, sandwiches and pasta dishes, offers ready-made Asian food and meat platters.
The Miyo family concept store stocks books from Little English Bookworm, and an exclusive collection of kid's clothing and toys. The store also offers creative workshops for children. Stylish expectant mums can pop into Mamoon for maternity wear, and there's a good selection of clothing at Veritas.
For home development, there's a Batiself in the Boomerang Centre, which also contains the hairdresser Beim Figaro, a shoe shop, Pronti, beauty treatment centre Qipao, fashion store Adler, restaurant Le Chesnoy, larger clothes size shop Miss Curvy, all purpose store Action, and furniture shop/kitchen supplier Roller. Nearby Terzi sells tobacco, wines and spirits, while Maxi-Vins sells fine wines and spirits.
If you’re doing a home makeover, Strassen is the place visit, with interior design shop RR Interior, Cuisines Perene, the Kitchen Store, SMETS, Casa, Asua and Camber, plus Flexa Shop which sells children's furniture.
For flower arrangements, try Fleurs Warnier or if you need a magic carpet, there's Palais du Tapis. On Rue de Kiem you'll find Golf Planet, selling everything to do with the sport. Train model enthusiasts need look no further than MBS-L The Train Shop. If you truly can't find what you want in the commune, Strassen borders the Belle Etoile shopping complex.
Schools & crèches
Strassen is also well-located for the European School Luxembourg 2 in Mamer (English, French, German, Danish, Italian, Greek, Hungarian and Czech sections), the Athenée de Luxembourg in Merl (which in addition to being a highly-rated Luxembourgish secondary school, also offers the IB in English) and Over the Rainbow private school in Belair (French & English sections).
There are a number of crèches in Strassen including The garden of Pimpanicaille at 10 Rue Bellvue, the state-run Am Pescher and Wibbeldewapp crèches, and L’enfant Roi crèches, Crèche Babouille, Children’s World Strassen, P’tits Malins, and Crèche La Ronde des Petits. There's also a service to provide support for working parents with sick children at home.
Transport & parking
Public bus lines 8, 11, 16 22, 31 and 33 run through Strassen, as well as private lines 222, 240, 248, 250, 255 and 260. The Stroossen Bus can take you from your home to the hospital, Belle Etoile shopping centre or to the station, Monday to Saturday, you just need to call 45 minutes in advance, and the 222 runs a late night service through the night at weekends. You can find all the bus information here. The Strassen/Bertrange train station runs into town and out to Arlon, you can find the station details here.
In addition to national state aid for the purchase of electric or hybrid cars and electric bicycles, the commune of Strassen applies an additional subsidy of 25% for its residents registered for more than 6 months. You can find out more here.
Sports & Parks
There's a circular walk that follows the edge of the forest, passing through Thillsmillen, Neimaxmillen and Schankemillen before returning to Strassen. You can find more walks on the commune site here. It is possible to walk the 20km from Strassen to Mersch without leaving the forest.
The aquatic centre Les Thermes has a wave pool, two slides, diving boards, and an outside pool, surrounded by a green space with loungers. There’s a multisport hall, a volleyball court, football pitches a skate park and a number of playgrounds. You can find a list of them here.
FC Una is the local club but you can find a list of associations including choral, biking, rambling and much more here. Every year, Luxembourg National Day is also celebrated in Park Riedgen with animations for kids.
Culture & Theatre
The Cultural Centre Paul Barble runs language courses and children’s art workshops. In September, the biennial Stroossefestival takes place with fantastic entertainment performances, street theatre and dance, music, food stalls and attractions for the kids.
The cultural centre also houses an art gallery "A Spiren" with two exhibition halls that host national and international artists.
Every second and fourth Friday there is a bio and alternative produce market held from 4pm-7pm outside the cultural centre. In addition to fruit and vegetables you can buy honey, local meats, traditional bread, olives and anti-pasti, and pasta and pizza.
Restaurants, cafes, bars and bakeries
A new patisserie run by husband-and-wife team Nicolas and Roxana Bourgard recently opened have opened a new shop-restaurant, NB Creations, at 153-155 rue du Kiem. In addition to gourmet patisserie a savoury menu is available at lunchtimes and a Sunday Brunch.
Restaurant Kimchi offers sushi, sashimi and a Korean BBQ. You'll find more sushi at GinkoSushi, while you can sample some Lebanese or French food at Hotel Olivier. For traditional Chinese fare try Raiskar.
The Porte du Bengale offers tasty tandoor dishes whilst Swagat specialises in Indian classics. Le Lion d'Or offers fish and chips plus a whole host of seasonal specialities including moules frites. It has a lovely summer terrace.
For Italian, sample Il Destino or La Comedia Dell'Arte. The Pizza Lux food truck dishes up authentic wood-fire cooked pizza opposite the town hall on Wednesday and Friday nights, and Verace food truck has pizza on Wednesday evenings. The Green Mango food truck offering Thai specialities is in Strassen on Monday nights and Friday lunchtime. Brasserie Benelux holds karaoke nights and looks like a lively place if you fancy a drink.