Anne Vanneste left France some six years ago to return to her native Bruges in Belgium, where her she and her family own a historic brewery. In need of a place to live, she embarked on the adventure of transforming an all but abandoned space on the brewery compound into a bright new home.
“This house has probably been transformed a million times,” said Anne Vanneste, a 36-year-old naval architect, showing the new version of her centuries-old, double-gable home in the villagelike center of the city, where her mother’s family has been running De Halve Maan, (the Half Moon), the city’s oldest continuous brewery, since the 1850s. In addition to her stake, Ms. Vanneste runs the brewery visitor center.
She and her family spent about $800,000 on a gut renovation to convert the brewery complex’s low-ceiling, second-story storage space into a contemporary home.
The 400-hundred-year-old building, with a 600-year-old basement, now contains a 2,700-square-foot apartment with two bedrooms, one bathroom and several outdoor spaces.