Completed in 2007 by Merkx + Girod Architecten, the Selexyz Dominicanen Bookstore in Maastricht in the Netherlands is an incredible church conversion that was originally consecrated in 1294.posted about 17 hours ago
© Roos Aldershoff
With land being a premium in the country, local governments have opted to convert and restore rather than demolish these historic abandoned buildings.
© Roos Aldershoff
© Roos Aldershoff
Bookstore awesome, a tavern would have been even better.
What a great idea. Beautiful. Also, I love the little cafe in the bookstore.
In Montreal they are turned into condos.
Here's one example:
Looking at this, it is amazing how much vertical space these halls of propaganda wasted. It sure must have impressed the peasants...
The inside of the condos looks great but the outside is a bit too church-ey for me. I would have removed at least the statue.
This is in Montreal's Little Italy - and you don't mess with their Virgin Mary =)
Here is a good tavern in Pittsburgh - I have been there a few times, a very impressive view
The collapse of the city’s steel industry in the eighties incited a mass exodus that cut the population in half. Left behind were dozens of churches, several of which are now secular structures. Start your pilgrimage with drinks at Church Brew Works, a microbrewery formerly known as St. John the Baptist Church. The pews, wood floor, and stained-glass windows are original, installed in 1903. Sit by the altar, near the copper tanks, or take a seat outside in the Hops Garden. The beer menu reflects a religious past—there’s Celestial Gold, Pious Monk Dunkel, and Pipe Organ Pale Ale. Balance your beer with pierogies, a starchy Pittsburgh staple. Ask the bartender for the number for a cab service—hailing one is nearly impossible—and cross the Allegheny River during a six-minute ride to Millvale. The redesigned Mr. Smalls Skate Park has a street course and ramps and draws amateurs and pros alike. Three blocks away is Mr. Smalls Theatre, an eighteenth-century church reborn as a performance space, rocker hostel, and recording studio. Bands like the Meat Puppets, Camera Obscura, and Jenny Lewis (along with a healthy dose of metal acts) will all play there this summer.
The Church Brew Works had long been on my radar as a brewpub to visit. From what I gathered it was Belgian beer influenced and set in a huge old church. It sounded too good to be true and as it turned out, it was. After a few passed through and around Pittsburgh over the years, I finally found myself staying in town for a night. Though I loved another Pittsburgh stalwart, Penn Brewing, I had tried many of their beers already and The Church Brew Works remained a completely unknown quantity. Our local friends had suggested eating dinner at Penn Brewing but we had already had lunch Great Lakes Brewing in Cleveland and even I thought three breweries in one day might be pushing it.
The Church Brew Works looked promising as we pulled up. It indeed was in a large old church, in fact St. John the Baptist Church which dates back to 1936 though it was in the process of being designed and built much earlier. Financial problems in the early 1990s lead to its closing in 1993. It opened as The Church Brew Works in 1996. It won a few medals at the Great American Beer Festival in its early inception, most recently a gold for their Maibock in 2005.
Walking into the cavernous brewpub, it looked more like a German beer hall than a Belgian cafe and this seemed a bit at odds with the otherwise churchly interior. There were rows of wooden tables and benches much like what you would expect in the Hofbrau Haus in Munich which again just seemed odd in a church. Since we had just eaten we sat at the rather nondescript bar. The bartender seemed rather bothered to wait on us and this only furthered to make me critical of the beers that were forthcoming. We had come all the way from South Florida by way of San Francisco and Seattle and about 25 National Parks to sit at this bar in Pittsburgh. The least the bartender could do was do her job.
Favorite Dish: The food menu was pricey especially considering the beer hall atmosphere and setting. We knew this in advance and stuck to trying their beers. 1) Celestial Gold-4.1%-Straw-colored helles w/ fair hops. Clean dry finish but carbonation is a bit off, kind of flat and I am no fan of fizzy beer. 2) Oktoberfest-Light amber malty fest beer lacking proper spicy character but decent dry finish. 3) Pious Monk Dunkle-4.3%-Light brown dunkles w/ roasty malt plate. A bit bitter & served far too cold. It could use more malt presence. 4) St. Denis Imperial Pils-7.5%-Rich malty strong pils w. obvious alcohol in the nose & palate. Fairly dry bitter finish. 5) 4 Grain Harvest Ale-5.3%-Amber grainy beer w/ cereal notes and fairly dry bitter finish. 6) Organ Pipe Pale-Odd butterscotch flavors intrude on in this thin poor pale ale. 7) Blast Furnace Stout-brewed with coconut as a seasonal specialty-Black light-bodied stout w/ definite sourish coconut flavor. Very interesting but the finish is uncertain and anything but clean. 8) Coffee Milk Stout-cask-Black light bodied, more like a porter. Roasty coffee palate w/ dry finish.
Overall, I would say the beers were okay. Nothing was super special and certainly not a place I would travel out of my way to visit again. The service was awful and that did not help me like the place any better. I had very high expectations but if given the chance again, I would opt to go to Penn Brewing. They specialize in Germanic beers and do a great job with them. I was surprised to see so many Germanic lagers on The Church Brew Works' beer menu. Not that they were bad, I was just expecting bigger, bolder beers.
Written Jan 1, 2010
Address: 3525 Liberty Avenue Lawrenceville, PA 15201
There is or was an abandoned church here and I wanted to buy it and turn it into a music joint for punk rock, metal, and whatever else I could think of. It would have been perfect for that. Bar/Music join. Ahhhh the thought of that is awesome. This church being converted into a bookstore isn't a bad idea either. There are better things but not a bad idea. Is it secular though? That is my question. They have a table in the shape of a cross.