It is an old Cistercian abbey located in the town of Villers-la-Ville. Founded in 1146, the abbey was abandoned in 1796. Most of the site has since fallen into disrepair. Further degradation of the site occurred in 1855, when the railway line between Leuven and Charleroi passed through the former abbey land. In 1893, the Belgian state purchased the site and launched a conservation effort.
WHY THIS PLACE
Listed as an official historic site in 1973, the abbey has subsequently benefited from considerable restoration, and the remains of the abbey, along with numerous outbuildings, can still be seen, including the cloister, refectory, kitchens, dormitories and brewery. Since 1992, the site has been maintained by the Association for the Promotion of Tourism and Culture of Villers.
The abbey now hosts an annual "Nuit Des Choeurs" choir festival, in which various choirs sing a variety of songs - classical through gospel, jazz and pop arrangements - from different parts of the venue during successive nights, culminating in a fireworks display. and concert center stage.