History of Vrijthof 13
The large 'Vrijthof' Square in the centre of Maastricht is justly famous inside as well as outside the Netherlands. This magnificent square is also the site of a great many monuments that attest to Maastricht's long and turbulent history. Besides the centuries-old Church of St. Servatius ( St. Servaaskerk) and the new theatre, a large number of beautiful and historic buildings line the square.
The monumental and relatively narrow building that houses Grand Café D'n Ingel has a beautiful lower front facing the square, adorned by a wonderful wood carving of an angel just above the door, the same angel that is also a central element of the city Maastricht’s coat of arms. This was one of the reasons why the name Grand Café D'n Ingel (Ingel means angel in the local dialect) was chosen and why there are so many statues of angels inside the restaurant.
If we listen attentively to the stories whispered by the old walls, we hear that the ownership of the building passed into the hands of a military man in 1724, when a gentleman by the name of Vaandrig Busco took the daughter of the mayor of Tongeren to be his wife and purchased the building located at Vrijthof 13 to accommodate his future family. We can also hear that, after this family, the Hardy family owned the building from 1772 to 1814, after which it passed into the hands of the Coenegracht family until 1872. These last two families are still very well known in and around Maastricht. A gap in the story follows, but we do know that, starting in 1888, a gentleman by the name of Van den Bergh, who served as Minister of Waterways, Trade, and Industry, lived in the house for two years.
Van den Bergh was followed by a lady, the widow Baden-Tummers, who lived in the four-floor building from 1890 to 1919, after which it was sold to the Kamm perfume house. We can easily imagine the fashionable ladies of the city arriving at the shop in their horse-drawn carriages to select a delicate perfume just in from Paris.
Guests who enter our door nowadays will find a fine blend of nostalgia, history, and romantic decors. Once inside, you will be welcomed by dozens of different angels greeting you from the ceiling, from the walls, and from the most unlikely corners. The next thing you notice is the impressive wooden stairway in the middle of the restaurant and the surprisingly large number of seating places available in our establishment.
We have been creating our own bit of history at D'n Ingel for over 30 years now, and it is our dream and ambition that, hundreds of years from now, future generations will also look back and cherish the rich and varied history we have helped create here.