Bangkok celebrated the 50th Anniversary of Minor International on Tuesday 18th at Siam Paragon Hall. The guest list was littered with glitterati as all paid homage to Mr William Heinecke his wife Kathy, their family and employees. The entire event was a lesson in style for how these events should be held. The centrepiece was an exhibition looking back over the last 50 years in the rapid growth of this hospitality, hotel, dining and lifestyle group.
Starting from when he first launched his company aged 17 years of age to present times where it has become one of Thailand’s truly international hospitality companies. Ambassadors, leading Thai and International businessmen and women queued up to greet Mr and Mrs Heinecke and their family and have their pictures taken at the event. The exhibition now open to the public dates the progression of the company, the brands it has launched and acquired, the deals done and the empire that has been built.
Throughout the night I met proud employees of the company present and past that spoke of the company, and the family, with such reverence. When the photos were over in the greeting hall Mr and Mrs Heinecke and family moved off into the exhibition and the crowds of well wishers moved with them. In through the exhibition with colourful and informative stands detailing the rapid growth of Minor International, the company, its brands and its people.
The suddenly the the dark blue curtains that had hidden a major part of the halls were pulled back to reveal a huge space where the event was to continue. Benihana, the Japanese steakhouse, one of the many Minor premium brands met the guests with a blaze of fire and the wonderful smell of Teppanyaki beef and chicken excited the taste buds.
As the hall opened up in front of us uniformed staff came forth with even more trays of drinks and tantalising food of all descriptions. Mr Heinecke the star of the show was finally called up on stage to address his audience in awe of this captain of the Thai hospitality industry but as ever he deflected the credit to his faithful and long serving staff, family and friends. Here’s to the next 50 years of Minor International. The exhibition is open to members of the public from 21 – 23rd September 10am – 9pm