The School

Our History

First steps in hospitality

At the end of the nineteenth century Frans Vermeulen, Vincent Vermeulen’s great grandfather, was already active in the hospitality sector. He was an absolute natural at serving others and helping them with the utmost discretion. Working at the market in Bruges he learned how to satisfy the needs of the upper class at the time. He quickly began working for himself, setting up one of the country’s very first catering businesses.

Discovering private service

As from 1906 Frans Vermeulen began working as a private chef in the castle owned by a noble. There was no better place to learn all there was to know about top-class quality, service and the butler’s trade.

The tradition continues

In 1978 Willy Vermeulen, Vincent’s father, renovated his father’s (Vincent’s grandfather) small guesthouse on the coast, aimed at offering mineworkers the chance to breathe in some healthy air during their holidays, converting it into a hotel and gastronomic restaurant. This is where Vincent and his brother Gino learned the secrets of true hospitality and service from a very young age. After their studies, they completed their education in the top spots across Europe, including a number of three-star French restaurants.

We're finally home

As from 2016 the SBH began offering its butler training in a magnificent “manor” situated in a large domain. This location is easily compared to the professional environment in which budding butlers can be expected to serve. The house has features such as a special dressing room, a fully equipped kitchen and a wine cellar, where students are able to learn all about wine and other high-class drinks. Also, the latest technology is in place, including a rapid Internet connection, allowing students to have lessons in all aspects concerning the digital transformation.

The book “What we can learn from the butler” will help to create more focus on the butler training and to demonstrate to organisations and companies that there are many elements within the butler training that are also of benefit to them in providing their clients with a service at butler’s level.

Some of our satisfied corporate customers