A river town with a port on the River Scheldt (or the Escaut, as it’s called in French), a place of artistic awakening and centre of the Industrial Revolution of the 19th and 20th centuries, Valenciennes has many a tale to tell. Located at the heart of Europe and ideally served by the motorways (A2 and A23) and the main road networks (Lille/Paris/Brussels/London), the town has a range of sides to it. It remains loyal to this tradition of innovation and creation with its world-renowned competitive clusters in the fields of digital technology, design and logistics, as well as being a hub of innovative transport technologies.
Numerous major companies such as Alstom, Bombardier, PSA, Toyota and DaimlerChrysler France have chosen to set up shop in the town due to its competitive and performative nature. Plus, there’s also VAFC, the town’s Ligue 2 football team with its magnificent Stade du Hainaut.
Just 10 minutes from the hotel, the town centre is a true open-air museum. Nicknamed the “Athens of the North” in the 19th century due to the numerous resident artists who won the Prix de Rome, the hometown of sculptor Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux and painter Antoine Watteau has a rich cultural heritage. Two light tourist paths cross the town centre from east to west and north to south, with the majestic Place d’Armes as their centre point. Along these well-lit trails, you can explore the architectural and artistic heritage of Valenciennes as night falls.
Near Valenciennes, discover the Scarpe-Escaut Regional Natural Park, the Nord-Pas de Calais remembrance trails (a memorial to the Great War), the Golf de Mormal (18-hole golf course), the Mining History Centre in Lewarde (40 minutes away) and the Louvre-Lens Museum (50 minutes away).