meet maile

Maile SymmondsA Restaurateur – Carrying on Family Traditions

Maile Sengoura, owner of Maile’s Thai Bistro, literally grew up in the kitchen. As a child, she watched and helped her mother cook the family’s daily meals. Since the Thai and Laotian cultures are all about food, its beautiful flavors, strong spices, and fresh taste, Maile was indoctrinated at a very early age. In fact, her first job was working as a prep cook at Thai Chef, in Lahaina, Maui. She was just a child spending her summers – not playing – but cooking.

Then, from the ages of 16-18, she worked as a server at the now defunct Mekong Thai Restaurant on Beretania Street in Honolulu. By this time, Maile had learned quite a bit of the restaurant business and was soon working at her Uncle Boun’s restaurant, Paesano Ristorante Italiano in Manoa. She then became an operating partner at her Aunt’s restaurant, Assaggio Ristorante Italiano in Hawaii Kai. Having inherited the entrepreneurial spirit and family traditions of owning restaurants, it wasn’t long before Maile wanted to have a restaurant that was her own; the freedom to create food the way she wanted.

And, in 2009, Maile’s Thai Bistro in Hawaii Kai Towne Center was born. Will there also be an Italian restaurant in Maile’s future?