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Old 20th August 2016, 00:47   #1
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Default Ferraris in glass houses

I was going through some old photography files from many years ago. I came across this serie, which I thought some of you might like.

We have moved back from 4 year Delhi to our home in a small village just outside The Hague in the Netherlands. Originally, we moved here in the early 90ís. During our various stints in various countries around the world from early 2000ís, we have always maintained our house here.

The area in the triangle roughly between The Hague, Hook of Holland and Rotterdam is known as the Westland. Itís very Dutch, very flat with many little canals and lakes. Itís also one of the largest areas where endless glass houses have been built over the last couple of decades. The farmers in this area grow vegetables mostly, some flowers too. All done in glass houses! Very efficient so Iím told

See https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glastuinbouw Sorry all in Dutch, but it has some interesting photographs.

What have Dutch glass houses to do with Ferrariís. There is one gentlemen in the Westland, who runs a trucking company. His firm transports the vegetables that are grown in the area and sold via a huge daily auction all over Europe in big trucks.

This gentlemen was also a huge Italy and Ferrari fan. He started collecting Ferrariís and at some point in time decided to convert a few glass houses into his own personal museum. As you will see he had them converted in an old Italian village look alike. An Italian village that is frequented by many classic Ferrariís and Italian bikes and scooters I might add.

As his business was prospering he started buying more and more old Italian stuff, including Ferrariís and his trucks would bring it all back to his home here in the Westland where it all got stored into a few old, empty glass houses. At some point in time he started building his own Italian village.

The gentlemen is a bit of character. Very few people have seen this unique collection. It is really his personal museum. He is not known for showing it to the public at all! Most classic car owners know of him and his museum. Few know the exact location, even fewer have been inside! There are no signs on the outside, nothing that even remotely shows what goes on inside, all hidden from sight from the public road.

So I was very surprised when I got a call from a friend of mine. He and a mate were driving around the Westland one early Sunday Monday in their Alfa Spider. They noticed a beautiful classic Ferrari parked in front of a glass house. They pulled over to have a look and bumped into this gentleman. They struck up a conversation. He invited them into the glass house and gave them a private tour. Somehow they managed to convince him that they had a bunch of Alfa Romeo Spider friends that would love to see it too. And the gentlemen agreed for us to come around the next Sunday.

Long story short; we got to spend a couple of hours roaming around this beautiful Italian village. And it really is a proper village, with shops, a barber, a fountain, laundry hanging on a line etc . etc. All the cars you see are in perfect running order and are kept road legal. He has his own full time mechanics to maintain everything. Every week one or two cars are driven on the public road to ensure they run perfectly and nothing seizes up.

It is a truly amazing collection set in a truly amazing setting. I was completely gob smacked when we walked inside. You hear about these sort of collections, you read about them in the classic car magazines, but I had never ever seen anything like this for real. Never have since either.

As far as I can figure out / remember, this was in the late 90ís. I donít know if this gentleman is still alive. Even then he was getting on a bit. A very nice, very unassuming guy.

I will let the photographs do the rest of the talking.

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Last edited by Jeroen : 21st August 2016 at 12:55.
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Old 21st August 2016, 11:29   #2
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Default re: Ferraris in glass houses

Here a copy of our Quarterly Alfa Romeo Spider Register Club magazine with the original article in Black and White in those days.

It appears this article was published in 2004, so the photographs must have been taken around that time as well.

I wrote this article, in those days I was the chief editor of the magazine. One of the things I wrote was that one of the motorbikes is an Maserati. Never knew they built bikes

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Old 21st August 2016, 17:05   #3
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Default re: Ferraris in glass houses

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Beyond Borders Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 21st August 2016, 19:12   #4
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Default re: Ferraris in glass houses

Lovely stuff.

A bit eerie it might be, to waddle by and discover a place like this by chance...

Shades of Pompeii, where everything was found perfectly preserved and lost in the mists of time, in some sense...
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Old 21st August 2016, 20:17   #5
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Default Re: Ferraris in glass houses

Woah! that Lambretta is the exact same colour that was owned by my father down to the 150 badge & others, complete with the grill on the edge of the front mudguard (not the Viking helmet type thingy on the top), the beading with clips, and the chrome ringed headlamp. Showed the snap to my parents and there were some misty eyes and fond memories. I learnt to ride/drive on this scooter and at the beginning of my career drove it all over the badlands of U.P. & Haryana.

Thank you for sharing this Jeroen.

Good to learn that you have settled back in your village and look forward to more of such gems from you.
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Old 21st August 2016, 22:51   #6
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Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
Lovely stuff.



A bit eerie it might be, to waddle by and discover a place like this by chance...



Shades of Pompeii, where everything was found perfectly preserved and lost in the mists of time, in some sense...

Actually, you are spot on. It was hugely interesting. But at the same time it was a bit weird as well. This whole meticulously built village, but nobody actually living in it.

It was a but of a ghost town!

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Old 23rd August 2016, 16:14   #7
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Default Re: Ferraris in glass houses

Thank you for sharing this with all of us, Jeroen. Lovely collection of automobiles and impeccable place indeed! Equally disheartening to know it is a bit of a ghost town!

Can I keep some of these pics as wallpapers please?
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Old 23rd August 2016, 19:21   #8
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Default Re: Ferraris in glass houses

Although the setting is a little bit creepy (in my opinion), the collection is mind boggling to say the least.

Now that you are back in your village, have you tried/plan to find out the current status of this place?
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Old 23rd August 2016, 23:14   #9
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Can I keep some of these pics as wallpapers please?

Be my guest, feel free to enjoy
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Old 23rd August 2016, 23:17   #10
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Originally Posted by vinit.merchant View Post

Now that you are back in your village, have you tried/plan to find out the current status of this place?

Though my Spider friends I managed to figure out its was somewhere in 2004. So twelve years ago. I'm not even sure where it was exactly, but not to far from here. I'm pretty sure I would recognise the location if I drove by. So I'll be doing a bit of touring over the next weekends.

I also put this series on Facebook. A few people remembered but nobody know the current state of the collection or the owner.

If I find out I will let you know.
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Old 23rd August 2016, 23:21   #11
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Default Re: Ferraris in glass houses

Either the camera taking the pictures are doing the tricks or the cars are very very extremely well maintained. I just cant stop looking again and again at the finish and the shine on the car. Salute to the gentleman.
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Old 24th August 2016, 10:22   #12
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Either the camera taking the pictures are doing the tricks or the cars are very very extremely well maintained. I just cant stop looking again and again at the finish and the shine on the car. Salute to the gentleman.

The camera was a simple point and shoot, Olympus cyber shot. The photographer likes to think he can take a reasonable shit.

But seriously the cars were all very well maintained. Probably not concours condition but pretty close. As I said, all of them were road legal and were taken out for a ride regularly.
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