The Sablon and the Marolles seem to be each other's opposites: one neighbourhood chic and distinguished, the other folksy and authentic.
In the past, the Sablon was the neighbourhood of the nobility. The Marolles is a district known for its popular authenticity, a place for jokes or 'zwans' in the local dialect, which houses a typical Brussels mix of French, Dutch, Spanish, and Arab-speaking residents. It has a fascinating social history. The two districts imperceptibly blend into one another and their influence over each other is typical of Brussels.