Sunday, July 03, 2011

Chievres Army Lodge, Belgium

So here we sit in the lovely hotel on Chievres Air Base waiting for Husband to complete his clearing papers and for our Italian visas.

It is drudgery sitting in the hotel but I have to say this hotel is a nice place. I would even venture to say that it's the nicest Army Lodge I've ever had the pleasure of staying in.

Of course the contrast to the hotel we stayed in on our arrival here in Belgium is quite stark... when we arrived here 2.5 years ago we stayed at the Hotel Masieres aka The Hotel Misery. It was referred to as such because it was a cinderblock mold-fest from the 1960s with faulty heating and a dirty diaper smell permeating all floors. I blogged and posted photos when we first got here: The Hotel Misery

This new place (completed a little over a year ago).... aahhh... brand new, flat screen TVs and AIR CONDITIONING... bliss. The only other place I know of in all of Belgium with air conditioning is the US commissary so we are feeling LUCKY.

This next Thursday we are loading up and taking the day to drive to Vicenza, Italy. We should arrive around 7pm and there we shall sit in another hotel until we can find housing.

We made reservations back at the end of February for one of these highly prized rooms (I think there are only 4 or 6). The couch sleeps two, the bed sleeps two and you can also use one of the air mattresses available to the rooms if you have a family of five.

There is also a kitchenette with two heating elements (like a hot-plate), a microwave, a pretty large refrigerator and GASP, pinch me... a dishwasher!

We were welcomed here with our dog and two cats and two kids. Out the back they have a playground, poop bag dispenser (for the dog not the kids) and a large lawn for dog walking.

For those of you arriving or departing Shape/Chievres, here are some more pictures of our pet suite room.


Sofia Alejandra said...

Hi, we are thinking that after Belgium we may want to be stationed in Italy, any advice on how you came to that decision, we have 3 weeks to decide!!

edith said...

It was the job here that sold my husband. It was either Italy or somewhere else in the states. We love being overseas and enjoying the experience - different culture, opportunity to travel, learn a new language etc. It is different than SHAPE but I'm sure we'll adjust. Things are very "Army" here and we sort of got used to the international flavor at SHAPE/chievres.

Good Luck!

~Hurricane B~ said...

I KNEW IT!!! YOu are guessing what..haha. I thought your name sounded familiar and then when you said Patrick I thought okay I know them. Seeing his picture on the couch I knew it was him. Tell Patrick that Ms. B from the teen center says have fun in Italy and her brother Gage says hello too!=)

Anonymous said...

I read on the Vicenza Garrison page that military may only bring two pets overseas. Is this actually enforced? I have two cats and a dog as well and would like to bring them to Vicenza as well. We PCS this spring to the area.

edith said...

We brought three pets overseas and I know others who wouldn't part with a beloved animal. They will work with you if you stand your ground. In both Belgium and Italy it seemed to be no big deal. In Italy we signed a document or they signed a waiver to allow us the extra animal.

Anonymous said...

HI Edith,
All this is so new to me : blogging and moving over seas. We recently found out that we're heading to Vicenza, Italy the end of Nov 2014, so very soon. We have a 9 year old Lab mix who has never flown before. We are very concerned about placing her in cargo due to hearing of so many concerning stories of lost pets, and deaths. In addition, it's my understanding that we have to sign a waiver due to flying her in the winter season which releases the airline from liability for flying a pet in potential 45 degrees or lower temperatures. We are not okay with this waiver. Can you shed light on this? Do you know of any international arrangements to fly pets from Ca to Italy, in less concerning circumstances? We are open to suggestions and insight. Thank you so much in advance.

edith said...

It has been so long since we had our dog in cargo (almost 6 years)and things have changed. I will tell you that the airlines DO NOT want to kill your dog by accident. Our dog (and 1000s of others) have come through on this end just fine. Follow the precautions regarding crate size, don't drug your dog (it affects their ability to regulate temperature) and take a deep breath... it is very stressful to relinquish your beloved pet into someone elses hands. If you are willing to spend thousands you can check on a pet cargo services by googling it. I'm sorry I'm not more help. This was the most stressful part of our PCS over here but everything ended up fine.