“I decided to take on the pub here in Southborough after six months of research, and moving to the UK to run a business on my own, mainly because five years ago in Italy it was a bad idea to start a business and now it’s even worse, so I’m really happy about my choice. Part of the idea for the project was to give my daughter a chance to study in Kent because in Europe the education system here is probably one of the best in the world, so I thought that even if the business wasn’t going to be good, it doesn’t matter because I’ll be able to give my daughter a good education.
Luckily from the beginning, the business has been extremely good and we have actually never stopped growing, we have a lot of competitors, lots of new businesses have arrived in our area but this hasn’t affected us and over the last four years, business has been great.
In Italy I had a completely different job, I had never run a pub or a restaurant, I was an operations manager for several Italian companies including a ten pin bowling company so my skills are in logistics, purchasing, production planning and manufacturing and my idea was pretty simple, it was to create this kind of marriage between English beer and Italian food, very simple. Running a pub is quite tough, it’s extremely hard and you must always be very focused on the business, the pub never closes so more or less you have to always be here. I have been able to find the right place, in the right position, in the right moment for the kind of project I had in mind, so it’s been a combination of luck, commitment and of course, my Wife.”
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Nestled in the small town of Southborough, a couple of miles from historic Tunbridge Wells, The Imperial is a traditional Victorian pub that wears its original features with pride.
It’s a fitting base then for exploring west Kent’s many manor houses, castle and gardens, with Hever Castle and Penshurst Place among the attractions nearby.
But you don’t have to leave the sanctity of the pub to find stunning man-made creations. Run by an Italian family, The Imperial has built a reputation for its exquisite Italian food, with lovingly crafted pizza and pasta dishes reflecting a true taste of la dolce vita.
At the bar, things are a little more ‘best of British’. Kent’s very own Shepherd Neame cask ales join excellent wines and all the usual aperitifs, soft drinks and coffees, which can be enjoyed in the traditional bar area or the courtyard garden in summer.
There’s a small function room here too, makes this an ideal spot when you’ve something special to celebrate. Whether you’re here for a party, the pizza, or just a perfect pint, a warm welcome awaits you every time…