Up close and personal with Marianne Ho who this month celebrates 30 years as the general manager of one of Birmingham’s finest, Henry Wong
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
I have worked in this industry for 40 years and this year I will be celebrating my 30th anniversary at Henry Wong. As the general manager, I am responsible for the day-to-day running of the restaurant. Over the past 40 years I have made great contacts within the city, built good working relationships and have made some lasting friendships. I love meeting and interacting with people. During my time away from work I enjoy socialising with my friends over dinner and drinks. It’s important for me to wind down when not at work, so I completely understand how important it is for our customers to relax and enjoy their experience when dining with us.
HOW DO YOU GET INTO TOWN?
The restaurant is based on Harborne’s High Street. I don’t live far from Harborne so make the short drive to work.
IS BRUM A GOOD PLACE TO WORK IN?
Birmingham is a fantastic place to work and in my 30 years it has changed dramatically. The dining scene in particular has changed a great deal, with such a variety of restaurants and dining experiences on offer. Henry Wong has been operating for 34 years, which means we’ve established a really loyal customer base.
I tend to stay local to Harborne High Street. There are a lot of nice pubs and coffee shops here, such as the Plough and Arco Lounge.
Apart from enjoying the traditional soup noodles at Henry Wong, I really like trying new and different places to eat. One of my favourites for lunch is Fumo as I really love the atmosphere and the choice and variety of dishes.
I like to take scenic drives in the country and I also love garden centres for the peace and tranquillity. I love flowers – their bright colours make me happy!
WHERE’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF THE CITY?
There’s so much to love, and so much development happening, so that’s a difficult question! I love the district around Colmore Row, the buildings and architecture. I also like Canalside.
I don’t really get the opportunity as I’m usually tired after a long busy evening at the restaurant. So, I would have to say Henry Wong – an opportunity to wind down and have a chat with the team.
HOW CAN THE CITY BE MADE BETTER?
I always enjoy visiting cafes when travelling, especially in Europe, as I like to sit, relax and take my time. I’d love to see that in Birmingham, where cafes stayed open late and we could sit while watching the world go by. Birmingham is continually evolving and developing which makes it such an exciting city to live and work in.