Small Talk

Ulrike le Roux on Sudbury House and her passion for hospitality

By Lauren Houghton

- Last updated on GMT

Ulrike le Roux is general manager at Sudbury House, overseeing its redecoration and refurbishment
Ulrike le Roux is general manager at Sudbury House, overseeing its redecoration and refurbishment
Ulrike le Roux completed her studies and hospitality training in South Africa. She has spent time working in a number of different sectors of the industry including B&Bs, restaurants, boutique hotels and chains. She moved to the UK to gain some international experience and ten years later is still here, now working in the role of general manager at Sudbury House hotel in Oxfordshire. 

Can you tell us more about the work you have done to Sudbury house?

The first part of the renovation of Sudbury House started in the old Georgian house, a Grade II listed building, where we have developed a new fine dining restaurant called Restaurant 56 under the helm of Andrew Scott. We wanted the new restaurant to have a comfortable but elegant feel which and that’s complimented by Andrew’s passion for modern British food, which he prepares using locally sourced and seasonal ingredients.

The refurbishment work we’ve been doing included sensitive redecoration and the addition of antiques, stunning artwork and carefully selected sculptures. One is the work of Francis John Williamson who sculpted the Golden Jubilee Bust of Queen Victoria.

What work do you still have left to do to the hotel?

We were delighted to receive planning permission a few weeks ago and we can now proceed with transforming Sudbury House into a luxury hotel. This will include tasteful redecoration and refurbishment of all our 49 bedrooms, the bar, lounge and reception areas and also the addition of a more informal brasserie style restaurant overlooking landscaped private rear gardens.

What does your typical day at Sudbury house involve?

There is no such thing as a typical day at Sudbury at the moment. Every day is so immensely different and with all the changes, planning and development we are constantly facing new and exciting challenges. One thing always remains the same though, everyone on board is working hard every day to move things forward and develop the company to its full potential.

What’s your favourite dish at Restaurant 56?

It would have to be the Loin of Venison, Bolognaise of its own Meat, Cocoa Nib Granola and Pear with Port Wine Sauce. It is to die for!

How did you get to where you are now?

I started working in the industry at the age of 14 and there was no turning back since then. I made a conscious career choice by studying Hospitality Management and committed myself 100 per cent to every role since then. For me it’s never just been a job, it’s been my passion. The need to always know more and always searching for new and exciting challenges has led me to where I am now.

Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?

Fulfilling my role within Interesting Hotels Group, continuously developing something unique and unforgettable.

What do you love about working in hospitality?

I absolutely love the fact that every day brings something new to the table and there’s just never a dull moment. Working together with passionate people, always aiming for perfection creates a buzz you don’t get anywhere else.

What advice would you give to those starting out in the industry?

Put your heart and soul into it, learn as much as you can from others and never stop challenging yourself.

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