Netherlands - Johan Agricola
Officier Maître Hôtelier
Joint owner/manager of Kasteel Engelenburg in Brummen
" The Agricola family and their staff assure a warm welcome "

Kasteel Engelenburg (English: Engelenburg Castle) was a private residence for over four centuries until 1988 when it was converted from a family home to one of the finest country hotels in the Netherlands. Today, it is owned and managed by Johan Agricola, Officier Maître Hôtelier, and his wife, Carin.

Johan Agricola's career as a hotelier spans several decades and has also included a year (2001-2002) as Deputy Marshal of the Court at The Royal Household where he had responsibility for the wedding arrangements of His Majesty King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima.

He started out in the Netherlands at the Parkhotel de Wiemsel in Ootmarsum. From 1990 and 1997 Johan and Carin were the General Managers of Landgoed Lauswolt in Beetsterzwaag (Friesland) and its restaurant Heeren van Harinxma.

From 1997-2004 Johan was Managing Director of the 200-bedroom The Lord Charles Hotel in Cape Town. The hotel was owned by the Krasnapolsky group and branded as a Golden Tulip (later NH) hotel. He was also responsible for the management of NH Plettenberg Bay and The Five Flies restaurant in the central business district of Cape Town.

Since 2005 Johan and Carin Agricola have been the owners/managers of Kasteel Engelenburg. Perfectly situated for a visit to the Veluwe region of Gelderland, the stately house is also a popular golf hotel, conference and meeting venue and a romantic wedding location.

A member of Relais & Chateaux, in 2016 the hotel was chosen by Gault & Millau as its Hotel of the Year. Kasteel Engelenburg has also been in Tripadvisor’s top 25 Hotels of the country since the list began.

The Serre Restaurant, located in the beautiful 19th-century Conservatory, offers a menu based on French cuisine with some international influences. The focus is on using fresh and local ingredients: herbs from its own gardens, game from its estate and fish from the River Ijssel, nearby lakes and the sea.

The influence of Johan and Carin Agricola is evident in the well-stocked wine cellar, which boasts some 200 different South African wines, said to be the largest collection in Europe. The couple lived in the Stellenbosch area for many years and have shared their knowledge and love of South African wines with their sommeliers. Every year they visit the Cape, to taste the finest wines and make their own.

Kasteel Engelenburg has a rich history. It is an important building in the region and its history has been turbulent. Built in 1570, it was destroyed in 1624 by the Spanish during the Battle of the Veluwe but was rebuilt in 1641 when it became a model for the Loo Palace in Apeldoorn in 1684.

It was a meeting place for the Patriots in the 18th century, but the Monarchy survived and the owner fled to France. The Governor of HM the Queen of the Province Gelderland used it as a summer residence and it has been a resort for employees of Twentsche Bank (later ABN).

It stood empty for more than 10 years before its transformation into a hotel and restaurant in 1988.The Agricola family and their staff assure a warm welcome to Kasteel Engelenburg.

There are 41 en suite bedrooms, each with its own distinctive character, sumptuous decor and a fine view over either the beautiful hotel gardens or the golf course. Besides enjoying the facilities, guests are invited to experience every single aspect of the long heritage of the estate.

Amanda Roberts
Publishing Editor, Revue internationale de la Chaîne