Discover Benelux, Issue 75, March 2020

Page 80


Opportunities, on and off the links TEXT: ARNE ADRIAENSSENS  |  PHOTOS: THE DUKE CLUB

Golf has always played a vital role in the business world. Many a deal has been struck on the greens and the links prove to be fertile soil for new friendships and fresh alliances. At the elegant estate that is The Duke Club, golf and business go hand in hand. As an exclusive business club, access to it is mainly reserved for its members, covering the club in an intriguing cloak of mystique. “We very rarely grant outsiders a peek behind our gates,” says general manager Marcel Arts. But for us, they made an exception. It was 1992 when esteemed entrepreneur Karel Van Eerd founded The Duke Club. After having built up a multi-million empire of Jumbo Supermarkets, Van Eerd wished 80  |  Issue 75  |  March 2020

to create an oasis of brotherhood and discretion for the vibrant Dutch business scene. “Only businesses can become members of our club,” explains Marcel Arts, general manager of The Duke Club. “Each can join with a maximum of 125 flights. Today, The Duke Club counts 850 members who can all enjoy the fantastic facilities our domain has to offer.”

‘Perfection is our calling card’ The most important attraction at The Duke Club is its state-of-the-art, 18-hole golf course. It was entirely redesigned in 2014 when the business club underwent its big transformation. Now, it adorns the top-five of the best 18-hole courses, best facilities and best-maintained courses on the prestigious rankings of Leading

Courses. “Perfection is our calling card; on the links and far beyond. Regardless of when you decide to stop by at The Duke Club, it will always look flawless. In winter, we have a staff of eight greenkeepers. In summer, that figure rises to 12. We leave nothing to chance.” The Duke Club’s crew also approaches the act of greenkeeping from a different angle. As the team starts early in the morning, they are invisible to the members. Everything looks perfect but the players never bump into those responsible for it and never have to wait to play a hole because of them.

Michelin and Gault Millau This eye for detail is also noticeable further away from the grass. In the stunning clubhouse adjoining the greens, you