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New member and advice!

New member and advice!

Old Mar 16th 2019, 8:14 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

There are loads of Chinese restaurants all over the place. Sadly most of them are serving the standard pseudo Chinese rubbish that was served in the UK 40 years ago. The food is still edible (I eat loads of it) and very cheap. €5.95 is not unusual for a basic menu del dia.

Any attempt to introduce a really good Chinese restaurant, particularly with Thai and fusion food would be exactly what would attract me even at twice the normal prices.

Can you please come down to the south coast - try Nerja. You would be full every service!


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Old Mar 16th 2019, 8:47 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Maybe too much focus on just one group of expats, there are other North Europeans around who like a touch of the Orientals. You seem to need to go where the demand for a better product is and thus where the money is. So I guess look for where the well off types hang out, but of course the cost of starting off will be higher. Fred James has a made a good start add to that Mallorca and Tenerife, possibly. However the competition with price is another issue. Fred James said he would happily spend double for lunch but that would be 12e. I think you want more than that though.

The old Cantonese eating places as you know have largely closed in the UK as the old crowd have retired and the kids don't want the drudgery of the kitchens preferring a better, more enjoyable life. The new Chinese both in Spain and UK are Mandarin speaking mainlanders. Price does seem to be king for the majority.

Good luck to you, good food is always welcome.
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Old Mar 16th 2019, 9:04 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by Fred James
There are loads of Chinese restaurants all over the place. Sadly most of them are serving the standard pseudo Chinese rubbish that was served in the UK 40 years ago. The food is still edible (I eat loads of it) and very cheap. €5.95 is not unusual for a basic menu del dia.

Any attempt to introduce a really good Chinese restaurant, particularly with Thai and fusion food would be exactly what would attract me even at twice the normal prices.

Can you please come down to the south coast - try Nerja. You would be full every service!


Hi Fred,
You are exactly the kind of customer we would be targeting. For example there are at least 20 Chinese restaurants and takeaways within a 7 mile radius where my Wife cooks, but none of them come close to the volume of customers. Last Saturday from 12 noon until last orders 22:30pm they had 800 customers in. And as well as eating they are drinking. It's all about the food. They have dishes that no other Chinese restaurant has. Even the classics are outstanding quality. I don't want to link Her restaurant as the owners have no idea She is eventually leaving them.

I'll put Nerja on my list and research it. I'm happy to relocate anywhere in Spain as long as we can find a half decent property for our lot. Even a single unit restaurant with a takeaway delivery service would start us off. Truth is myself and family really miss nice weather, we've holidayed in Spain many times but only recently turning our attention to maybe doing business there.
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Old Mar 16th 2019, 9:16 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by jonboy
Maybe too much focus on just one group of expats, there are other North Europeans around who like a touch of the Orientals. You seem to need to go where the demand for a better product is and thus where the money is. So I guess look for where the well off types hang out, but of course the cost of starting off will be higher. Fred James has a made a good start add to that Mallorca and Tenerife, possibly. However the competition with price is another issue. Fred James said he would happily spend double for lunch but that would be 12e. I think you want more than that though.

The old Cantonese eating places as you know have largely closed in the UK as the old crowd have retired and the kids don't want the drudgery of the kitchens preferring a better, more enjoyable life. The new Chinese both in Spain and UK are Mandarin speaking mainlanders. Price does seem to be king for the majority.

Good luck to you, good food is always welcome.
Hi Jonboy,
Thanks for your reply. Yes I can confirm what you are saying is true, they are crying out for Wok chefs here in the UK. The young Chinese don't want to put the hours in to learn. My Wife's average week is 60 hours prep and cooking. My Wifes Boss is from Hong Kong and he cant cook. Her and the head chef cook for Him in the restaurant.

Point taken it's not just Brits that enjoy Chinese or Thai food. Problem we had in the past with multi national customers is they ask you to cook the way they get it back Home. Kung Pao or Foo yung in the States is not the same as the UK version etc. Just one example and it becomes a head ache they want you to modify your menu just for them. This wouldn't be possible if we were busy.

We wouldn't out-price ourselves in fact quite the opposite. We would offer specials and deals. My only doubt would be the availability of some must have products. Are there Chinese cash and carry in Spain like as in the UK.
This is the one they stock Her restaurant from, under one roof they have everything from Chinese to Thai products and ingredients. Do these places or similar, exist in Spain?
SeeWoo - About us - Restaurants - Chinatown

Last edited by RJG2019; Mar 16th 2019 at 9:43 pm.
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Old Mar 16th 2019, 10:31 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

There are very few places that sell retail (sadly as I would love access to such a place as I regularly cook proper Chinese food and find supplies difficult) but in Málaga there is a whole industrial estate near the airport that is 100% Chinese who supply the restaurants and the hundreds of Chinese Bazaars that are everywhere.

Jonboy, I said I would pay double, but I usually spend at least €20 a head when I eat Chinese, the price of the Menu del Dia was just an illustration of how low the prices can be.
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Old Mar 17th 2019, 1:09 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by Fred James
There are very few places that sell retail (sadly as I would love access to such a place as I regularly cook proper Chinese food and find supplies difficult) but in Málaga there is a whole industrial estate near the airport that is 100% Chinese who supply the restaurants and the hundreds of Chinese Bazaars that are everywhere.

Jonboy, I said I would pay double, but I usually spend at least €20 a head when I eat Chinese, the price of the Menu del Dia was just an illustration of how low the prices can be.
Hi Fred,
Are there websites for these places?
This has been a stumbling block in the past, not being able to, or finding it difficult to import the necessities from the UK. I guess a few pallets could be shipped over once or twice a year but of course the cost to do this eats into profits.
I'd be interested to find out what brands, products are available in Malaga.
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Old Mar 17th 2019, 3:05 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

My family came to Spain before joining the Eu & we made it work.Many years previously when I left school I had a dream of working for myself in a business quite different to anything done before in my life.Go for it or you will always think "what if".I have operated a successful business during those years in 3 different countries because I was determined to do it. Good luck to you hope you stick with it.
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Old Mar 17th 2019, 4:56 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by dougal03
My family came to Spain before joining the Eu & we made it work.Many years previously when I left school I had a dream of working for myself in a business quite different to anything done before in my life.Go for it or you will always think "what if".I have operated a successful business during those years in 3 different countries because I was determined to do it. Good luck to you hope you stick with it.
Best advice so far on this thread
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Old Mar 17th 2019, 8:42 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by Fredbargate
Best advice so far on this thread
I agree.

We've taken far bigger gambles in further away places. I'm a great believer in the saying 'God loves a trier' and we're not afraid to up sticks and move.

For Fred. I found a Chinese wholesaler in Spain, they have some of the products we'd need. But definitely we'd have to import the rest, unless there's others.
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Old Mar 18th 2019, 1:05 am
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Default Re: New member and advice!

I suppose it depends what you mean by 'best advice'. Quite a few people who live in Spain have gone to the effort of advising which areas they think have the demographic a business like yours would need to be successful. Encouragement is great, but so is information.
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Old Mar 18th 2019, 9:33 am
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Originally Posted by spouse of scouse
I suppose it depends what you mean by 'best advice'. Quite a few people who live in Spain have gone to the effort of advising which areas they think have the demographic a business like yours would need to be successful. Encouragement is great, but so is information.
Absolutely. Which areas in your opinion would b the best demographic location?
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Old Mar 18th 2019, 9:57 am
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by RJG2019
Absolutely. Which areas in your opinion would b the best demographic location?
Wouldn't have a clue
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Old Mar 18th 2019, 11:02 am
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Default Re: New member and advice!

Originally Posted by RJG2019
Hi Ladies and Gents,
We have a go to list that includes other Countries. We have a teenage family.
Thank you in advance.
Hi, butting in from the France forum, so obviously can't help on the professional front. But no one has picked up on the fact that you have a teenage family, and this is a universal issue for potential expats in non-English-speaking countries.
Have you researched schooling for them? Depending on their level of Spanish grammar and knowledge of Spanish culture, the general consensus is that they would either sink or flounder when thrown in at the deep end in a State Secondary School. There are International Schools where they could finish their education, and they should be researched before deciding on where you settle. Being 100% sure that they welcome your plans is another aspect which is sometimes overlooked by potential expats with teenagers...
HTH
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Old Mar 18th 2019, 8:13 pm
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Default Re: New member and advice!

I think what you are trying to do sounds great and different not to mention you've got some serious skin in the game. Spain is a diverse country and a big foodie destination for food lovers.. I personally believe that these days with more people traveling and watching cookery programs than ever before they are intrigued to try new things and they also want something more authentic rather than the chinese, indian, thai food of old that cater for the "western" palate (which are ten a penny). Demographics are changing and I feel there are gaps in the market here for people to shake things up a little.

In terms of areas to look at with high British expat populations, I would suggest, Marbella, Puerto Banus, San Pedro de Alcantera and Nerja on the Costa del Sol. Javea / Denia, Alicante on the Costa Blanca. These are all reasonably up market areas. However, along both of these costa's are a host of towns and villages with a high density of Brits that could suit you if you didn't want an upmarket town.

If you really want to take a gamble you could go for a place not as heavily populated by Brits like San Sebastien which is a food lover's heaven with the most Michelin stars than any other place in the world. Or in and around Barcelona there are a few towns like Sitges that are also popular.

In the end the food does the talking.. If it's that good people will come regardless of whether they are Brits..

There is a huge Chinese community in Spain and I know that the warehouses you seek do exist as I have seen them where i live in Valencia (near the airport) even the chinese supermarkets seem to stock authentic products here. The same can be said for the Malaga region. In terms of brands i wouldn't know, this is something you would have to check out that is specific to you.

Also, DMU is right in terms of schools. There are lots of private British schools around that follow the British curriculum where your kids could finish their education.

Nothing beats boots on the ground to get a feel for areas and what is currently on offer.

Hope that helps and good luck

Last edited by Fun in the sun; Mar 18th 2019 at 8:37 pm.
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Old Jun 23rd 2019, 1:07 pm
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Smile Re: New member and advice!

U
Originally Posted by dmu
Hi, butting in from the France forum, so obviously can't help on the professional front. But no one has picked up on the fact that you have a teenage family, and this is a universal issue for potential expats in non-English-speaking countries.
Have you researched schooling for them? Depending on their level of Spanish grammar and knowledge of Spanish culture, the general consensus is that they would either sink or flounder when thrown in at the deep end in a State Secondary School. There are International Schools where they could finish their education, and they should be researched before deciding on where you settle. Being 100% sure that they welcome your plans is another aspect which is sometimes overlooked by potential expats with teenagers...
HTH
Have you considered Alicante City?
We are a soon to be retired couple living near the city. It has everything. Real working full time Spanish city. International schools. Airport 20 mins from center. Beaches, Marina, Old town, great national and local transport links, supermarkets, shopping malls. Thousands of tourists. 100s of fish and Spanish restaurants.

But we have only come across two British/Irish restaurants. Thai corner and a Plaice in the corner. We haven’t ventured into any Chinese restaurants here as frankly they didn’t look too busy!!
We could write a book about pitfalls in raising children/teenagers in any country.
We don’t know which potential business blocks you might face but you could certainly find a thriving market for your great quality restaurant in Alicante City
Best of luck in your search.
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