(L-R): Laurent Schonkert, Cactus SA; Manu Konsbruck, La Belle Etoile; Credit: Chronicle.lu

On Tuesday 19 March 2024, the Belle Etoile shopping centre in Bertrange held a press conference to announce details of the celebrations around their 50th anniversary this year.

Manu Konsbruck, Director of the Bettel Etoile, introduced the director of Cactus SA, Laurent Schonckert, who recalled the origins of the shopping centre and its various phases of expansion over the years.

History / Evolution

With a backdrop of photographs taken on the day it was inaugurated, 3 July 1974, he recalled that it initially comprised 21 shops (of which Cactus was the anchor supermarket tenant) and two restaurants over 13,000 m2, it employed 300 staff and had 1,125 parking spaces.

On 30 November 1988, it received its firest major expansion when it opening its West Wing and Conforama departed to their own store just beside the centre. There were a total of 17 new shops, with a total of 45 shops and restaurants, with an additional 145 staff being employed. 

The second major expansion was inaugurated on 19 August 1996 with 24 new shops, bringing the total of shops and restaurants to 70, with 160 additional staff.

And the last major expansion saw the addition of the €50 million South Wing which was inaugurated on 24 May 2013, bringing the total sales area to 39,000 m2. The number of parking bays had almost tripled since the centre first opened, with space now for 3,200 cars. A total of 1,550 people now work there, with 105 shops and restaurants.

The evolution did not stop there, with a major refurbishment carried out for the GANG foodhall to open on 30 August 2023, offering 520 seats for dining in the foodhall offering 8 different menus, as well as two restaurants. 

And a special logo has been designed for the anniversary too.

50th Anniversary

Laurent Schonckert outlined a number of initiatives which will include competitions to win different prizes.

Firstly, this coming weekend, from Friday 22 to Sunday 24 March, the 50th campaign will be launched with three competitions announced

A total of €125,000 can be won between 22 March and 19 October, by way of 50 vouchers each worth €50 to be won daily over a period of 50 days, with scratchcards. 

Then, from 22 March to 4 May, a photo / social media competition will take place, with 50 winners (2 tickets each) to the Gala Evening on Thursday 16 May 2024 at the GANG foodhall which will cater for 500 people that evening.

And, over the weekend of 2-5 May 2024, the shopping centre will be decorated under the theme of "70s Disco", with games at all 105 shops, and an after-work disco on the Friday from 17:00 - 21:00, and a Giant Birthday Cake on the Saturday.

And, on Saturday 27 April 2024, there will be a hip hop competition - this is a new discipline in the Summer Olympics this year in Paris.