We chat to Michael Krayenhoff, the co-founder of The Inner Circle – a unique dating platform connecting ambitious, like-minded people in London and beyond.
Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself?
The Inner Circle was launched in 2012 by David Vermeulen, Serge Samusya and myself. Before that I’ve worked as a consultant in Singapore and studied MSc in Entrepreneurship at Royal Holloway University in London. At The Inner Circle, I focus on a variety of things such as business expansion, events, PR and growth.
What triggered you to launch The Inner Circle?
The Inner Circle is the brainchild of our Founder and CEO, David Vermeulen. After his long term relationship came to an end in 2012, he registered for online dating websites for the first time and deleted his accounts shortly after.
The websites and apps didn’t represent what he was truly searching for. As entertaining as it can be to go through endless profiles, swiping left or right aimlessly, the reality was that the majority of profiles and matches were random and unappealing. And this made him realize that it’s the quality of potential matches that matters, not the quantity of users amassed.
Is that true that there are thousands of people on the waiting list right now?
Indeed. The waiting list is pretty long as we have a rigorous screening process to maintain a well balanced community and to ensure our members only meet like-minded people in a genuine and trustworthy environment.
At the end of the day, we want our members to make the most of their time and have great dates. The first date doesn’t have to be the one, but it should be a fun night out with an interesting person at least.
We heard a lot of good stuff about The Inner Circle events. How often do they take place?
We host regular events across London and Europe on a monthly basis. The nights vary from after-work cocktails to the themed parties, always at cool venues. For example, we hosted a wonderland themed party at The Century Club including a Mad Hatters tea party on the rooftop.
Next month, we are hosting The Inner Circle Summer Polo Cup. The day will start with adrenaline-fuelled polo matches followed by a delicious brunch. Once the games are over and the winners have been crowned, the party will kick off with DJ Per Pederson on the sundeck, Chris Sharp on the saxophone combined with a live violin.
Sounds awesome! Is there any way for non-members to attend the event?
Yes, there is actually. Each member can get up to 2 tickets, one for themselves and another one for their single friend who is not The Inner Circle member (yet)! 🙂
Lovely! Can you tell us a bit about your hobbies and interests?
I love sports and enjoy playing pretty much any sport; from running to kite surfing, skiing and polo. The latter is a perfect excuse to head outside London on Saturday or Sunday!
Where do you like to eat and go out in London, any top tips?
London is full of great restaurants. Some of my favorites are as Mac & Wild and Ours. I do also love exploring country specific neighborhoods across London and finding those little gems where the locals eat. Lambeth, for example, has been dubbed ‘Little Portugal’ and offers some great Portuguese food, while Tooting is known for its delicious curries.
For drinks, my all time favorite is Barts, hidden in the Chelsea Cloisters. Delicious cocktails, awesome staff and for some reason it always gets a bit out of hand. An awesome new comer is Swingers in the City.
When you are not busy working, what do you like to do to unwind and relax?
I love to play sports during the day and going out with friends in the evenings. I also enjoy checking out food markets, cooking a big dinner and watching a movie.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My alarm goes off at 7.17am. I usually skip breakfast, pick up a cappuccino from my local coffee shop and cruise on my Dutch bike to work. Many people complain about cycling in London, but I find it fantastic!
Monday mornings I start with planning my week and set one main focus for each day. Each day starts with my daily Rhythm which includes running through the latest applications on The Inner Circle and a detailed to do list for that day.
Do you have a favourite quote?
I have quite a few. I like to experience new things so if I had to pick one, it would be this one:
‘Life begins at the end of your comfort zone’
You can register for The Inner Circle here