Our cozy and stylish cocktail bar and club in the heart of the historic center of Antwerp has a rich history.

The building is first mentioned in 1394, but the first sightings probably date back to the
12th century.

In 1397, Henric Van Espemde is the owner of the property. 4 years later, in 1401, official
documents mention Henric Van Espemde as the city clerk and city steward.

After his demise in 1414, “de Gans” was split into 2 parts, as mentioned in a deed of the
same year: the property was called “de Gans van den Horen”, but from then on it
consisted of the “Kleine Gans” (little goose) at the Oude Koornmarkt 40 and the “Grote
Gans” (big goose) at the Oude Koornmarkt 38.

Properties in the area were very popular with merchants, magistrates and wealthy citizens, partly due to the city hall’s proximity but also because of the depth of the houses

From about the early 15th century to the beginning of the 16th century, de “Grote Gans”
was an inn.

“De Gans” and its outbuildings ran up to the Reyndersstraat and formed the largest block of houses between the Oude Koornmarkt, Reyndersstraat and Hoogstraat.

In 1518, the inn became a merchant’s residence. A deed dating back to 1539 then again
mentions a certain Willem van Rustere as the owner of “de Gans”.

The merchant’s residence only fitting into the budget of very wealthy citizens, is proven by a description of “de Gans” from 1561. That description mentions the word “stove”: a
bathhouse. A sign of great luxury at that time.

It is suspected that the facade (in Rococo style) on the side of the Oude Koornmarkt was commissioned by Ferdinand van Pruyssen, the largest wine merchant in Antwerp. At the same time, he also owned 2 other properties in the Pelgrimstraat, just around the corner from the Oude Koornmarkt. Ferdinand van Pruyssen was the husband of Maria Anna de Wilde who inherited the “Grote Gans” from her parents in 1745. Their descendants continued to own the building until the middle of the 19th century.

In 1782, the “Grote Gans” and the “Kleine Gans” become 1 property once again.

Today, our cocktail bar and club Vertigo largely consists of the cellars of the former “Grote Gans”.