It’s hard to believe it’s been seven years since Hoang (King) Phung arrived in Australia. Time sure flies when you’re having fun. Just ask King.
He touched down from Ho Chi Minh City in 2010 where the only thing larger than his bag were his ambitions.
Since then, life has been busy. Commencing in Coffs Harbour for the renowned C.ex Group before moving to the bright lights of Melbourne to take up a role at the 5 star Park Hyatt.
Then on to Sydney where he would settle for the next 3 years at The Billabong Hotel – an ALH pub in Sydney’s west.
Working his way up the ranks, expanding his knowledge and skill, he was appointed Head Chef at Cabramatta’s Richards on the Park in 2016 – only a few months after his Sydney wedding.
For King, life could not be better. Managing a kitchen with 3 direct reports, where food costs, staff training and purchasing are part of his every day; his career continues to go from strength to strength.
“I am really enjoying Australia. It has offered me everything I ever wanted. It’s given me a stable and peaceful life but more importantly, it provides me with reward for my efforts” says King.
“I now live in a country where I contribute to society and where my hard work is not only rewarded but valued. The people around me treat me like an equal which is not what I am used to”.
Being settled in his work is one thing but going home at night to his wife Sandy and two-month-old daughter Ketlyn is the icing on what has become a very sweet cake.
“Our beautiful daughter was born two months ago so we are not sleeping much but everything for us has fallen into place and it’s just lovely” says King.
Things don’t just fall into place without hard work and King, like all TSS candidates, has worked extremely hard to get where he is today.
This experience has completely changed the course of his life. In seven short years he has travelled around Australia and been married. He has also become a father, Head Chef and Australian citizen. Suffice to say the smile he wears on his face is far from manufactured.
“TSS has changed my life. I recommend this to everyone back home. I think if you have something good, you should share it with others so they can enjoy it with you. I am excited about my future; something I doubted I would ever say”.
King’s lifelong dream of opening his own restaurant remains firmly on track although his parental duties may keep this on the backburner for a little while yet.
“TSS have played a very important role in our successful life so far. Thank you to all of you for helping me come here and be able to love my life again”
He is a wonderful example of how important our work is. King has achieved so much more than he ever thought possible but this is just the beginning.