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Gate of Rekem

In Maastricht 'gate' was a common name for a noble house.

Probably because those houses all had a large carriage gate.

It happened more often than not that a noble family, living in the vicinity of Maastricht, had a place to stay in the city itself where they could find protection in unsafe times, like the lord of Reckheim or Rekem, after whom this house is named.

There is already a reference from 1475 that Jonker Willem van Sombreffe, lord of Kerpen and Rekem, died in a house in the Bredestraat, next to the St. Jacobsgasthuis.

From 1589 the building belonged to the Jesuits. When they were expelled from Maastricht in 1639, it came into the hands of the city. It became the residence of the military commander Stein-Callenfels. Between 1640 and 1662 the Brabant and Liege aldermen's offices were located here, until they could move into the new town hall. Thereafter the military commander resided there until 1726, when he moved to Tongersestraat 6. Around 1820 the house became the property of merchant Pieter Jan Cools. And in 1829 the wine business of Guillaume Polis, who was married to a daughter of wine merchant Rijckelen, settled here.

Behind the property there is a large garden, which is largely cellared. In the past it was a wine cellar of the Polis & Rijckelen wine merchant. The entrance was at the gate of Bredestraat 19. In 1971 the wine trade merged with the Sauter company. The wine cellar was then closed.

(Source: Zicht op Maastricht)

The building was rebuilt in the middle of the 18th century. It then received its current frontage. What happened to the part behind it is not known.

The house has a broad brick facade in Louis XV style. It is a cantilevered, asymmetrical Rococo style, which is clearly reflected in the ornamentation of the gate frame and the tympanum above the entrance.

There is also a plastered picture of an exotic landscape with palm trees and a round temple. Whether this had a particular meaning or was just fantasy, however, is not known.

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