Twins quit high-profile financial jobs to start a business touring London in a campervan selling cocktails
They say great minds are alike, and for Dutch twins Joyce and Raissa De Haas, 30, it couldn’t be more fitting.
The sisters do everything together, from studying the same course in college, having the same friends, and even building a successful business together.
Double Dutch (pun intended) was created by the twins in 2015 after they realized there was a gap in the market for soda and tonic blenders – although their careers began in the originated a little differently.
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Speaking to My London about their iconic name, Raissa said: “S Someone said oh you should call it Double Dutch, we thought it was pretty funny but the next day it really stuck.
“Being twins works great, we know each other by heart. It’s quite effective because we just say it as it is. Working together is not so bad, our social lives are quite intertwined because we have a lot of the same friends, we’re constantly together so it’s a lot of fun. “
The twins were born and raised in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, the birthplace of gin. As the Netherlands is the center of gin, it’s not uncommon for houses to contain old distilleries and Joyce and Raissa grew up with one in their backyard.
Joyce and Raissa’s parents taught the girls everything about the different types of gins, vodkas and wines and the family also lived near many local distilleries.
By the time the sisters went to college to study finance, they knew all about the spirit world. However, they noticed that there wasn’t a big progression with blenders, especially sodas and tonics.
So the couple started making theirs and trying them out with friends at college parties and nights.
“W e started to organize our own parties, but wenever really thought about doing it seriously, we saw it more as a hobby. Then we graduated, but when we started working in finance we realized it wasn’t for us, ”said Raissa.
Joyce and Raissa took a risk and quit their finance jobs before moving to London in 2013 to study an MSc in Entrepreneurship at UCL.
In college, the twins researched the mixology industry to find out where there were gaps in the market. They graduated in 2014 with the Double Dutch concept and received an award for having the business plan of the year.
They launched their first two blenders, cucumber and watermelon, and pomegranate and basil in 2016 and the pair now have up to 12 flavors, although cucumber and watermelon are the most popular.
You might have recognized Joyce and Raissa driving around London and parking their colorful campervans in places like Southbank, Notting Hill, Portobello Road and Covent Garden.
Double Dutch has proven to be a huge success not only in London, but also in 40 other countries around the world. Next is the United States, where the twins will be living for the next few months as they launch Double Dutch in the United States.
Joyce and Raissa are well aware that the mixology industry is predominantly male, so they created a bartending program exclusively for 20 women.
The 12 week course has been a success so far and Raissa is looking forward to welcoming the next cohort in 2022.
She said: “So far this has been truly amazing and the feedback we have received from the bartenders has been very positive. We’ll probably be relaunching it next year for a new batch of female bartenders that we want to support – we’re driving this change ourselves.
“It sounds really exciting, our industry is pretty male dominated, but I think it’s becoming a lot more inclusive and I think it’s a good time to make the necessary changes – w We know we set ourselves apart from our male competitors because we are memorable. “
To find out about Double Dutch’s next tour, go to in line.
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