Museum Plantin-Moretus : a UNESCO World Heritage Museum in Antwerp

In the early afternoon after our walking tour in outer Antwerp our coach dropped us off at the car park by the River Scheldt from where we made our way to the Grote Markt and the Cathedral.

Grote Markt

The Grote Markt, Antwerp


Onze-Lieve-Vrouwe Kathedraal, Antwerp

From here we dispersed to find lunch. The plan then was to reassemble at the Cathedral in about an hour in order to tour the Rubens paintings which hang there, currently. However, with no persuasion from me, my friend and I decided we would rather visit the Plantin-Moretus Museum and arranged to meet the group back at the coach at 5pm.

Chocolate Box

Wrapping my purchases at The Chocolate Box

So, after a tasty pub lunch and making some chocolate purchases, we soon found the museum and were very happy with our choice. This is the only museum listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Plantin Moretus

The Plantin-Moretus Museum, Antwerp

Inner courtyard

The Elegant Interior Garden

This is one of the most interesting museums in Antwerp. It is housed in the mansion of Christophe Plantin, who set up as a printer in 1555, one of the first industrial printers in history. In the workshop, the equipment, which includes one of the oldest surviving printing presses, has been left as it was when operations ceased in the early 19th century. There is much else to see here besides, including the family home, a sumptuous patrician home with an elegant interior garden, tapestries, vellum Bible, woodcuts, copper plates, and works by Rubens. The museum’s archives, more than 100 years old, have been placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.” [Source : My LV City Guide to Amsterdam, Antwerp, Brussels, Zurich, 2012]


The Original Bookshop : books sold here from 1700

The Proofreader

The Proofreader

Christoph Plantin

Christoph Plantin

In The Great Library

In the Great Library

Great Library

In the Great Library/Chapel

The Moretuses’ own private book collection (1640) is an example of a humanist library. The volumes are shelved by size. By 1655 the Library was used as a Chapel.


Art Deco and Art Nouveau in Lille and Antwerp : Day Three

Day 3 : A full day’s excursion today to the historic Belgian City of Antwerp (about 1.5 hours from Lille) famed as the birthplace of Rubens with a strong artistic heritage in its fine museums and churches. This heritage was reflected too in the city’s enthusiastic embracing of the Art Nouveau movement with an entire district, known as the Golden Triangle of some 170 Art Nouveau houses as well as the famed “Five Continents” house and the Reunion exhibition in the Cathedral of Our Lady. Evening free.”

There are so many Art Nouveau houses in Antwerp’s Golden Triangle that it is impossible I’m afraid to give the addresses of each but here are some examples from those 3 streets – Waterloostraat, Transvaalstraat and Cogels Osylei. Quite amazing! According to Mike at one time threatened with demolition this now an area of prime real estate.

AN on Waterloost

Waterloostraat, Antwerp crammed with Art Nouveau houses

With more than 100 Art Nouveau buildings, Antwerp is the second town of Belgium (after Brussels) and one of the two most important ports in Europe.

Zurenborg – Cogels Osylei quarter

This is the Art Nouveau “golden triangle”, a quarter defined by three streets (Cogels Osylei, Waterloo straat and Transvaal straat) that was built mainly between 1890 and 1906. The urban planning of Zurenborg and the Cogels Osylei dates from 1894 (and half of the area was built in 1895, which became an important place for Art Nouveau which began around 1897 in Antwerp). An incredible number of Art Nouveau buildings are still preserved for your pleasure. It is often presented as the most important Art Nouveau quarter in Europe and in the world.” [Source]

So, here are some of those buildings preserved “for your pleasure”.


Den Tijd, Waterloostraat

Close up Den Tijd

Close-up of Den Tijd


On Waterloo Straat

Waterloo St

Also on Waterloostraat

4 seasons 1

One of the Four Seasons Houses at a cross roads, Waterloostraat

[“De Vier Seizoenen” villas built by Joseph Bascourt in 1899 : the 4 symetrical villas corner a cross roads. Each corner is decorated by a fresco dedicated to a season.]

4 seasons spring

Four Seasons – Spring

4 seasons summer

Four Seasons – Summer

4 seasons autumn

Four Seasons – Autumn

4 seasons winter

Four Seasons – Winter


There are the peacock’s eyes!


Plain – but with peacock eye balcony

Art Nouveau triangle

Art Nouveau in the Golden Triangle


Over The Top in the Golden Triangle

Cogels Osylei

Cogels Osylei

Grander House on Cogels Osylei

Grander house on Cogels Osylei

On Cogels Osylei

Also on Cogels Osylei

I probably have another 50 photos but that is enough for now.