Interview with Paulus Panggabean, Head Division of F&B of MRA Group and Director of Operations of Hard Rock Café Indonesia.

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Please tell us a bit about yourself…

My name is Paulus Panggabean, 49 years old, working as the Division Head of Food and Beverage of MRA Group since 2008. But I’ve been working in this Company since 1992. I started at Hard Rock Café Jakarta as the first local Manager. I am married and have 3 kids.

What do you like and dislike about your current position?

Actually I love everything about creativity, music, and culinary. I find the combination of those three things in my current position that is why I like my job. I’m dealing with food, music, and being creative.

How do you manage you time between Bali and Jakarta?

I already have my own schedule. Most of my businesses are in Jakarta so I spend 3 weeks there and 1 week in Bali.

What is your most favorite comfort food and why?

I always love Japanese food because it is so simple. The simplicity of Japanese food is really beautiful.

Tell us about your tattoos. Why did you want to draw things on your body?

My tattoos have so many stories; I love to share some of them and the rest I just keep them to myself. I had my first tattoo when I was 23 years old in Mexico and it meant nothing. Because at that time I was just a teen boy and into rock music, all my idols are having tattoos so I just wanted to have one and be as cool as them. But as I grow older, the tattoo that I want is different with what I had in my younger age. When I experienced something in my life, I documented it in tattoo. It’s all meaningful now.

What did you tell to your kids when they ask you about tattoo? Are they allowed to have tattoos like their dad?

When they asked me why I have lots of tattoos, I told them because I like tattoos. They are allowed to get one after they are 21 years old, because I think that after 21 they are mature enough to decide anything they want in life as long as they’re comfortable with it and responsible. You know, most parents want their kids to be in a certain way. I am not that type of parents. I give my kids freedom to choose their own way of life.

Where is your dream vacation? A place that you’ve never been before and why?

New Zealand. Because Lord of The Ring and The Hobbit was taken there and I really want to visit the place that my favorite movie was shot.

What kind of music that you’re listening to?

I used to listen to really-really heavy rock music and jazz also, but now I am more into funk, 70’s funk and soul music like Kool and The Gang. But of course I still listen to rock.

How do you describe rock n roll?

Rock n Roll is rebel. Anything that rebel against the establishment is called rock n roll. Rock n Roll breaks the trend, and creates a new one.

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