Café Bostella

Café Bostella
A Documentary by Paul van der stap en Elisa Veini
Crowdfunding teaser: 
funded project
donated of €9.500
days to go

Project Information

About the project
LOCKLINEJulia (85) struggles for the survival of her folk pub, a second living room for many guests from Belgium and the Netherlands.

Update October 2016

The film is now available on DVD, accompanied by a photo book, in the webshop of Slowdocs Publishers.


Café Bostella

Café Bostella is a well-known folk pub in the border region to the north of Antwerp. A place where everyone feels welcome and where the border is virtually non-existing. Julia (85) runs the pub since nearly half a century. Her strong personality has contributed to the success of the pub. But as she gets older, the pub faces an uncertain future.

Watch the teaser with English subtitles here:


Julia and her pub

She turned 80 years ago, but Julia still works every day in Café Bostella, a folk pub in the Belgian village Essen-Hoek, only 500 metres from the Dutch border. The pub is her life almost since half a century. It is also an integral part of life of many regular guests from both sides of the brder. It is their second living room.

The success did not come to her easy. Julia's struggle for the pub has been permanent. In the beginning, the conservative village would not accept the pub; later on the smoking prohibition made many guests rather stay home. Recently, she has to meet with the new strict requirementsof the consumer product safety authorities, rising prices, and, not in the last place, her own health.

There is no other pub like the Bostella

But Julia keeps on going. Soon, the pub will be a rare example of a still existing traditional folk pub. In the Bostella, guests can still find the open, heartful athmosphere that is so characteristic of folk pubs. This is what attracts people. It attracted us too, and that is how we decided to make a film about Julia and Café Bostella.

We need your support

We film intensively in the pub since Spring 2013 and expect to continue until late 2015. The film will be finished in May 2016. The film will be accompanied by a photo book with an essay on folk pubs. All texts are in Dutch and English, and the film will have English subtitles.

The Province of Antwerp and the City of Essen will support the film financially. Their funding covers approximately 70% of the total costs for the final production of the film, the DVD and the book. Now we need your support to cover the remaining 30%. We count on your help!



Quote that inspired the maker

'I don't drink beer but I am addicted to the pub. If I should stop with it, I wouldn't live long anymore.'
This project was successfully funded on 26-11-2015

Fund Project