Two young entrepreneurs have added to their growing pub portfolio and turned a former Glasgow steak house into Mr Wu’s – an Asian-themed venue they describe as a ‘kitchen disco’.

Kevin Bowie and Stephen Warisito, who run TW Pubs, have teamed-up with award-winning Hawthorn Leisure to take on the Kilmarnock Road site, which had been closed since last June.

The pair have invested £60,000 to turn the Hickory Steak House into Mr Wu’s.

It is the second Hawthorn Leisure pub they have reopened, having already relaunched The Weavers, a community pub in Condorrat, the village near Glasgow where Kevin grew up. The business partners’ six-strong pub portfolio includes four with another pub company.

Kevin said: “Stephen’s parents run successful Chinese restaurants in and around Glasgow and Falkirk, and we wanted to bring an Asian flavour to our latest pub venture. It’s really exciting for us, because this is the first time we’ve been able to realise our own concept from scratch.

“And we believed the music people would want to listen to while they’re enjoying their food and drink would be disco, and we’ll have DJs playing classic disco tracks on Friday nights and at weekends.”

Spread across two floors, Mr Wu’s features Chinese-style red lantern lighting, illuminated cement seating, ping-pong and pool tables, plus retro arcade game machines. A local artist has been commissioned to paint a large ‘Mr Wu’ mural on one of the interior walls.

Run by an 18-strong team, Mr Wu’s serves pan-Asian food, European dishes with an Asian twist, cocktails, and Tsingtao, the Chinese beer which is sponsoring the venue.

Kevin added: “The initial response from people has been 100% positive. They’re all thrilled at the concept. And while our customer profile is the 18 to 35-year-old age range, Mr Wu’s really is for everyone. Stephen and I just want people to have a good time and create happy memories.”

Hawthorn Leisure CEO Gerry Carroll said: “Kevin and Stephen are very good, very passionate, very experienced operators. They’re hands-on, too, and were the right partners with the right concept for this part of Glasgow. This is their second Hawthorn Leisure reopening, and we hope to be part of TW Pubs’ future growth ambitions.

“We knew that they shared the values that Hawthorn Leisure holds dear, which is one of the reasons they were excited about working with us and sharing our vision. It really is a perfect fit.”

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