The Cercle

Located at the heart of the Royal Park of Brussels, the Cercle Royal Gaulois, Artistique et Littéraire forms a gathering point for diplomats, scientists, the liberal professions and those of the law, university professors and academics, politicians, corporate executives and directors, practitioners of the arts and literature. They gladly repair here for lunch, to take part in some activity organised by the Cercle or to wet their whistles at our well-stocked bar.

The Cercle’s roots date back well into the past. To begin with, the Brussels Cercle Artistique et Littéraire was instituted in 1847 by leading figures of the time, including the astronomer Adolphe Quételet. Then, in 1911, the Cercle de la Toison d’Or was founded by a group of intellectuals that included among them Edouard Huysmans. It changed its name to Cercle Gaulois in 1919 and adopted the appellation “Royal” in 1937. The two Cercles amalgamated their fortunes in 1951, from which came the new name emerged by which it is still known: Cercle Royal Gaulois Artistique et Littéraire.

Open to all political, cultural or philosophical bents, we form a centre for gatherings among friends with interests in matters intellectual, artistic, literary, humoristic, gastronomical, tourist or even sporting. Refinement and conviviality are the two prime traits in these gatherings, imbued as they are in the exceptional surroundings that the Cercle has as its venue, the oldest parts of which were date back to 1780.

In keeping with the beauty of the premises and under the aegis of the Arts and Literary Section – a feature exclusive to the Gaulois – the Cercle organises a number of special occasions devoted to the arts and culture, such as exhibitions, concerts, conferences and gala events.

Within its far-reaching network, the Cercle Gaulois also maintains mutual relations with a hundred or so other circles in Belgium and across the globe.

Life as a member

Members are invited to participate in the Cercle in different ways.

We very frequently organise all kinds of activities, details of which can be found in another section of this website.

The restaurant is at the disposal of members and their guests daily at lunchtime, and on Thursday evenings. The restaurant will be happy to take your table reservation or you can gladly join the refectory table.

Areas are available for any practical tasks members need to do, such as the cyber space (in the form of shared offices) and the library. Small meeting rooms can be hired for business gatherings.

Magnificent grand ballrooms are also offered on beneficial terms, for arranging larger meetings, dinners and receptions.

The Cercle has adequate parking available in normal circumstances. If space is unavailable, members and their guests may park at specially agreed rates at Interparking’s “Arts-Loi” car park, 200 metres away.

When on their foreign travels, Cercle Gaulois members may wish to visit one of our many sister circles among which mutual hospitality is extended to all members.

New members are admitted on a recommendations basis: three existing members present the candidate to the shortlist committee, at whose discretion the decision lies. Candidates admitted to membership are then presented at an induction evening, by the end of which they are true and proper Gaulois.