Splitting up in luxury in Holland’s ‘divorce hotels’

When you think of a five-star hotel, you might think of fine dining, antique furniture and impeccable service. Chances are you don’t think of divorce mediation. And yet a Dutch entrepreneur has now, improbably, brought the two together, letting couples go through a divorce while staying in a luxury hotel.

However, this process likely won’t work for those couples considering a contested divorce. Why? The entire process is completed in three short days and is meant for couples willing to work through the process using mediation, meaning no lawyers are present.

In reality, it is only for Dutch couples right now. However, entrepreneur Jim Halfens – the “Divorce Hotel” founder – is currently working on extending the business to Germany.

Interested couples must go through an extensive interview process to see if such a quick process will actually work for them. (As of September 12, 2011, only seven couples had actually taken the plunge.)

Couples then select a mutually acceptable four- or five-star hotel. However, according to PRI’s The World.org, all of the couples have so far opted for separate rooms.

The Dutch media seems to be having fun with the concept, playing Elvis’ “Heartbreak Hotel” as background to news reports. Still, Halfens has maintained said that he doesn’t break hearts. The hearts are “already broken,” he said, and his service lets people “go on with their lives in a faster way.”

And three days is much faster than the six to nine months, or more, that a divorce would normally take in Holland.

Stay tuned for more from our Ft. Worth family law blog …

To learn more about dissolution of marriage or property division, contact an experienced and skilled legal professional.

This post is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Related Resources:

USA Today, “Divorce Hotel: Couples end their marriage in luxury hotels” Sept. 13, 2011

PRI’s The World, “breaking up at the divorce hotel in Holland” Sept. 12, 2011