Saint-Gilles is a geographically small commune immediately southwest of Brussels Center
, with a sizeable population of 42,000 people.
The upper half of St. Gilles is residential, with many of the houses built in an art nouveau style around the turn of the twentieth century. The house formerly belonging to the architect Victor Horta has been turned into a museum; his designs can be found scattered throughout Saint-Gilles. The lower half of the commune is a commercial district built up around South Station, an important stop on the high speed rail line.