I'm not usually one for watching reality shows but earlier this year, myself and Nicola became somewhat engrossed in the ITVbe show, Life On Marbs. The show took a sneaky peak into the lives of some of the rich and fabulous people who live and work in the glamorous marina resort of Marbella on the Costa Del Sol.
Towards the end of the series, a former cast member of The Only Way is Essex, Elliott Wright, made a cameo appearance when he announced that he was moving to Marbella to set up a new restaurant called Olivia's La Cala. Fast forward four months and we're glued to a new reality show, Elliott Wright - Playa In Marbella, which follows Elliott as he opens the doors to his new business venture. On the night of the launch, the cream of Marbella descended on Olivia's to raise a glass or two of champagne and welcomed Elliott to the Puerto Banus hospitality scene. One of the guests at the party was Lina Hodgkins, one of the regular faces from Life On Marbs, who was keen to give Elliott some much needed support, whilst passing comment on his very expensive champagne! As Group Marketing Director of Linekers Group, Lina runs all of the groups venues in the resort including Tibu, Babilonia and Portside as well as being responsible for over 40,000 stag and hen parties that head to Marbella. There's not much goes on in the resort without Lina knowing about it, maybe that's why she's affectionately known to the locals as Mummy Marbella.
Nicola had sent a couple of tweets to Lina to say that it had been good to see her on the show and after a little Twitterchat, Mummy Marbella had agreed to answer 5 Questions for Gerry's Kitchen.
Here's Lina's story;How did you get started in the hospitality industry?
I have always worked in a sales marketing role from quite a young age. Regardless of the product the end result is always the same – I have sold, lingerie, confectionary, great nights out and much more, same concept different product. Working with Linekers, the role is slightly different as my job is very diverse and covers all the business aspects of bars and clubs in the Spanish resort of Marbella.
What’s the best piece of advice you could give anyone wanting to start working within the hospitality industry?
Customer service, customer service, customer service! It is so important - if clients want to purchase anything you have to give them the best you can offer regardless of the product. I am very hot on this – both ways I expect it and give it to the best of my ability.
Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years time?
Hopefully thinking about retirement or at least slowing down, maybe just working a few days a week- wishful thinking at this time!
If you could only dine at one restaurant in the world, where would it be & why?
Le Cirque New York – I would just love to see the old fashioned glamour and history.
You can invite one person (living or dead) to your last meal – Who would it be and why? …and what’s on the menu?
I'd like to thank Lina for taking time out of her busy schedule to answer 5 Questions and wish her every success in the future.
So if you're enjoying a holiday in or around Puerto Banus, keep an eye out for Mummy Marbella and make sure to say hello if you see her, maybe even treat her to a glass of her favourite fizz. (Be careful though, some places are charging €38 for two glasses of champagne!)
You can keep up to date with Lina on Twitter and Instagram.