Son of Frederick William de Ginkell van Reede (d. 1747), 4th Earl of Athlone, and Louisa Isabella Hermelina van Wassenaar (d. 1756). Brother of Frederick Christian Rhynhart de Ginkell, 5th Earl of Athlone, who in 1765 married Anna Elisabeth Christina van Tuyll van Serooskerken, a cousin of Belle de Zuylen's.1
Arend van Reede married (1769) Heylwich Adriana Amarantha van Lynden (1740-1773),2 with whom he had at least two children, William Frederik (1770-1838) and Otteline Frederique (1773-1799). In 1791 he married Wilhelmina von Krusemarck.3 Van Reede was at some time a close personal friend of Belle de Zuylen's.
Boswell and Reede dined together at Archibald Maclaine's on December 24, 1763. Boswell recorded part of the dinner conversation, at which Reede said that "[Belle] de Zuylen is very likable. She writes verses, but she is not ill natured. She jests..."
Boswell spent some time in Reede's company during his visit to The Hague in 1764 as well.