I know @iacas wasn't a fan of the sand at the Newport Cup, but honestly those are my favorite of all the bunkers I've played out of. It could just be the fact that I'm used to rock hard bunkers in Colorado with dirt instead of sand most of the time, but having actual sand was fantastic. It did reduce the amount of spin that you could easily get out of the bunkers slightly, but it made it so much easier to just kind of float the ball out of the bunker with a nice cushion of sand underneath it. I prefer that type of shot to relying on the spin, though you could still get spin out of the softer bunkers if you were precise.
Europe is different than in the US, especially those older towns and cities. You notice that everyone looks be driving at a crawl. You have people that drive 35-45 mph in downtown areas in the US. I think there are hurdles for this to be used more widely in the US. I think there are certain places it might work out well. Especially those with less number of lanes, and more pedestrian friendly designs to begin with.