Hospitality stalwart Hester Guy may have passed on the torch at her catering company but she plans to keep her apron on for a long time yet.
After a year on the market, Guy has sold the Palmerston North-based HG Catering, which she had owned for more than 16 years.
When new owner Lee Davis officially took over at the start of April, she promptly hired Guy as a consultant to retain her experience and culinary skills for weddings and major events.
Guy said she was glad to have sold the business to a “wonderful woman,” who understood the company’s strengths.
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Guy said she could now focus on what she loved best – cooking and family.
“I couldn’t have asked for anything better. I’ve got the best of both worlds,” Guy said.
“Nothing changes except I don’t have to worry about running the business, [and] if I need to take time for my grandkids, I can.
“Lee told me ‘you’ve grown this beautiful baby, and now it’s time for the baby to school’.”
Davis has reopened HG Catering and the Create Eatery in the same Princess St building.
She hoped to make the management transition of the business completely seamless.
“The food’s got a really great reputation, and the company’s been around for a long time,” she said.
“So I’ve changed nothing and I don’t intend to because it works.”
Before buying the catering company Davis was the personal assistant to the Manawatu Prison director for six years.
She also had experience in catering and hospitality-related roles at the Sherwood Motor Inn and Quality Inn, though she admits it was a “long, long time ago”.
“It is a bit of a different pathway in but I was in hospitality for a while before I got married.
“Over the last six years I’ve organised a lot of lower North Island functions for Corrections, and doing that reminded me how much I loved it.”