Royal Antwerp is the oldest golf club in Belgium, and remains among the most established and revered in the country. Like many of the best golfing venues in Belgium and Holland, the layout is heavily dependent upon the British influence in the lowlands around the turn of the twentieth century.
In Royal Antwerp's case, the original design was formulated by Willie Park, and was subsequently revised by Tom Simpson in 1930. The course itself is reminiscent of the revered heathland gems of Berkshire and Surrey; although extremely flat, the fairways are carved through stands of stunning silver birch, and are bordered by the characteristic purple heather.
A 6,700 yard par 73 course may inspire undue confidence in visiting golfers, but like many old-fashioned golf courses, subtlety and guile are essential to effect a good score. Royal Antwerp is a testament to golf from a bygone age, but it is truly a joy to behold.