Perez de Malvenda house

Huis Perez de Malvenda in Brugge (c) Visit Bruges Jan Darthet (2)
Juan Perez de Malvenda was a guardian of the relic of the Holy Blood. During politically and religious turbulent times, he hid the relic in his home. Today, the Holy Blood is still revered.

Perez de Malvenda house

The Perez de Malvenda house stands proudly in the shadow of the belfry of Bruges. This stately, late-gothic mansion is a treasure trove of stories. Juan Perez de Malvenda lived here at the end of the 16th century. He was a member of the Noble Brotherhood of the Holy Blood that was charged with protecting the eponymous relic.

Juan took that task very seriously. During religious unrest at the time, the relic of the Holy Blood was in danger of being destroyed. Juan took charge of it and hid it in this city palace. The house still stands today and has been fully restored. Today, it houses 2BE, a tasteful shop and bar where you can sample typical Belgian delicacies.

Juan Perez de Malvenda was the son of the Spanish consul. He was born in Bruges, spent all his life there and would take up a prominent role. He became a city councillor and was a member of the Noble Brotherhood of the Holy Blood. To this day, that Catholic fraternity guards and venerates the relic of the Holy Blood. During politically-religious turbulent times, he hid the relic in the various houses where he lived during that period. One such mansion bears his name today.

Malvenda
Huis Perez de Malvenda in Brugge (c) Visit Bruges Jan Darthet

The relic of the Holy Blood

For hundreds of years, Bruges has possessed a relic of the Holy Blood of Jesus Christ. According to tradition, Diederik of Alsace, Count of Flanders, brought it back from Jerusalem after the second crusade (1150). Today, the relic is still at home in the Basilica of the Holy Blood, in the historic centre of Bruges. There, it is worshipped daily. In the chapel of the basilica there is also a museum, a treasury filled with numerous artworks, artefacts and masterpieces linked to it.

Every Ascension Day, the relic is brought out to be shown. That is when the Procession of the Holy Blood passes through Bruges city centre. A huge and colourful procession of more than 1,700 participants then depicts a succession of Biblical scenes. The suffering of Christ is the central theme, with the relic of the Holy Blood playing the leading role. Recognised by UNESCO as intangible world cultural heritage, this historic parade attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year.

Practical information

  • 2BE - Perez de Malvenda House: Wollestraat 53, 8000 Bruges.  
    More info about opening hours, accessibility and other practical information can be found at 2BE.
  • Basilica of the Holy Blood: Burg 13, 8000 Bruges
  • Holy Blood Procession, every year on Our Lord’s Ascension Day   
    More about opening hours, accessibility and other practical information can be found at Visit Bruges.