Of all the Antwerp nightclubs, Pekfabrik is perhaps the rawest of them all. This place exudes a rare, carefree freedom – which is why you’ll find the most extravagant party animals here on the most spontaneous and unexpected nights.
What have you noticed most during the short time our clubs were open again?
“Nightlife is starting a bit earlier in the evening again, both in bars and in clubs. Initially, the imposed curfew probably had something to do with it, but now it seems like everyone wants to get more out of their evening. That’s nice to see, so hopefully, it stays that way.”
What makes Antwerp nightlife unique?
“I have travelled around the world, and what strikes me every time is that nightclubs abroad largely remain something exclusive. Here in Belgium, and especially in Antwerp, we have grown up with a certain café attitude. That’s unique. In France, pubs are mainly for older people, while clubs are quickly associated with bad types. Over here, that café culture seeps into our nightclubs too, creating a unique and pleasant atmosphere among the crowd. I was worried that the lockdown would make us as boring as our neighbours, but fortunately, that’s not the case.”
What moment of the night do you find most memorable?
“I work during my events, so it’s often a very stressful affair. Everything can go wrong, and you always have to be ready for any situation. But in the end, when most visitors have left and a core of ravers remains on the dance floor, I can finally relax. That’s actually the beginning of the most enjoyable moment of the evening for me.”
What distinguishes Pekfabrik from the rest?
“Pekfabrik is an old school trashy joint. We let the nightlife go its own way here. So our security won’t be watching your every move; that’s how it’s supposed to be. People need an outlet, and as long as it’s within the rules, they are allowed to go crazy. With us, you can let loose, and no one will judge you here.”
What does the future of Pekfabriek, and by extension, our Antwerp scene look like?
“We’re not a typical nightclub that’s open every weekend; we also do other cultural events. In the future, we will take things to a more professional level and take more control of everything ourselves. As for Antwerp’s nightlife in general, I hope that things will pick up again. We’re starting a new chapter, so hopefully, there are enough people who want to keep pushing forward.”