EN painting above table in restaurant

A cosy living room ambiance in Restaurant Nevel

A mix of restaurant and gallery

Inspiration business

Restaurant Nevel in Den Bosch serves exquisite (vegetable) dishes in refreshing, cosy surroundings. The restaurant also acts as a gallery: a variety of pieces of art by local artists hang on the walls, from Artiteq Click Rails. That blend of restaurant and gallery works fantastically. “Life is all about enjoyment and art is definitely part of that!”

A focus on vegetables

Marjolein van Boxtel opened Restaurant Nevel along with her companions in late 2023. “For a long time, my partner Bobby and I had dreamed of starting our own business,” says Marjolein. “We felt that Den Bosch was lacking a high-end restaurant, with a focus on vegetables. Last year, the three of us decided to plug this hole in the market.” Together with their good friend Douwe, the couple opened Restaurant Nevel at the Brede Haven harbour in Den Bosch. Marjolein: “Douwe is a fantastic chef with a background in a Michelin-starred restaurant. Bobby takes care of the drinks and gastronomic food and drink pairings, and I am responsible for the business side of things and for welcoming guests during our opening hours.”

As little waste as possible

The entrepreneurial trio make conscious choices in relation to sustainability. “We believe that is very important,” Marjolein explains. “For example, we only serve a ‘surprise’ menu and not a la carte, as that results in much less waste. We also pay attention to what we use in many ways, in order to throw away as little as possible. For example, upon arrival our guests are served fresh bread, but we don’t use the end pieces. But we then use those end pieces in our friandises and make other products from them, such as bread yeast.”

NL sfeerbeeld groentes in bakken in restaurant
NL sfeerbeeld groentes in bakken in restaurant

An ode to everything living

Vegetables are at the heart of all of our dishes, but that doesn’t mean you won’t see meat or fish on our plates. “Nevel, the name of our restaurant, spells ‘Leven’, the Dutch word for life when reversed. We have a keen eye for all the beautiful things in life, on plates and in glasses. We respect all life. Whilst vegetables are our greatest love, they are certainly not our only love! If a recipe calls for it, we will happily use fish or meat. But this would be in proportions other than what you may be accustomed to. Where possible, we also opt for organic, sustainable and local choices.”

Art is part of enjoying life

For the Nevel team, life is all about enjoyment. “That’s why we also decided to display art on the walls,” Marjolein explains. “As far as we are concerned, art is an essential part of enjoying life.” The inspiration came from a good friend, Anne-Claire, who provides a platform for European arts and crafts through her initiative LOA (For the Love of Art).

“We thought it would be great to showcase the art that she offers. We have consciously chosen to mainly exhibit the work of up-and-coming artists in the region. It is, of course, also important to us that the paintings match Nevel’s style, ambiance and interior.”

Nl schilderijen boven tafel in restaurant
NL schilderij boven tafel in restaurant

Gallery in a restaurant

We currently have the work of three different artists hanging on the restaurant walls. Each piece of art is accompanied by a card with an explanation about the painting and the artist. “Art on the wall of a restaurant is, of course, not unique, but this is special in that all the work we exhibit is for sale,” says Marjolein. “So the art is displayed as if it is hanging in a gallery. And as soon as a piece of art is sold, there is room for something new.”

All paintings hang on Artiteq’s Click Rail. “We learned about the system from working with Anne-Claire,” says Marjolein. “At her gallery Arti-Pop, the art work also hangs on Click Rails which is where we saw them in action. We thought the hanging system was a very subtle and sustainable solution, which didn’t damage the walls. You can paint the rails in the colour of the wall, which makes them blend in beautifully. And the art work hangs attractively on them.”

Moving tables = moving art

Installation of the picture hanging system in the restaurant was a really quick job, Marjolein remembers. “You screw the clips into the wall, click the rail in and you’re good to go. On one wall, we painted the rail in the same colour as the wall and deliberately left the other rail white, so that it matched nicely. There was no finishing work to be done and the rail was immediately sleek in appearance.”

Marjolein is very happy with the system’s flexibility. “You can change the pieces of art very quickly, or hang them higher or lower. You don’t have to drill new holes into the wall to do that,” she explains. “For us, as business owners in the hospitality industry, an ideal aspect of this system is that we can easily hang the paintings over the entire width of the wall. If, for example, I want to move a table by a metre, because we are getting a large group of guests, I am able to simply move the art work hanging above the table to its new position. That’s really handy!”

NL kunst boven tafel met klanten in restaurant
NL kunst boven tafel in restaurant

A welcoming living room vibe

Restaurant Nevel only opened a couple of months ago, but things are already going incredibly well. “Our guests tell us that they love the food, of course, but most of all they really appreciate the ambiance,” says Marjolein. “We serve superior quality food, but we do that in an approachable and welcoming manner. The most important thing for us is that our guests feel at ease.”

Restaurant Nevel shows that fine dining really doesn’t have to feel cold and aloof. Restaurants and cafes in Den Bosch are, of course, renowned for their conviviality, but not usually in combination with a full evening programme. You particularly see this in businesses with tables covered in crisp white linen. “We really do things differently,” Marjolein believes. “We have worked hard to achieve a cosy living room ambiance. This is evident both in the interior and in the way in which we treat our guests. We don’t put on a false front, we are simply ourselves. And we receive lovely compliments about that.”

NL kunst boven tafel in restaurant
NL kunst boven tafel in restaurant