The Rif Fort lies at the entrance of the St. Anna Bay in the western Otrabanda neighborhood in the city of Willemstad, on the Caribbean island of Curaçao in the Dutch Antilles. Its name is sometimes also spelled as Riffort and translates as Reef Fort.
In the early 19th century the fortifications on Curaçao were almost all in a state of neglect. A proposal to restore them also caught the interest of King William I of the Netherlands. And in 1824 he appointed a luitenant-general Krayenhoff to make a restoration plan. Under the direction of Krayenhoff the Rif Fort and the Water Fort, on the opposite shore, were built in 1828/1829. The Rif Fort was built between the entrance of the bay, the coast and the former Rif Water. It was built to protect the entrance of the St. Anna Bay and the outer part of the Otrabanda neighborhood.
When the fort was finished it was bombproof and armed with 56 cannons, barracks, a powder magazine and a watertank. In front of the fort stood a small bombproof dome where the chain was kept that was used to seal off the entrance to the harbour.
When the Rif Fort lost its military purpose, I don't know but in the first part of the 20th century the grounds of the Rif Fort were used by a water company. In 1942 the fort was armed with two 37mm machineguns. Later it housed government institutions and a police station.
At present the Rif Fort is freely accessible. It now used as a very touristic shopping mall.