The Seven Sins of Steve Ball - Founder of The Columbo Group
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The Seven Sins of Steve Ball

Founder of The Columbo Group
Steve Ball
Steve Ball, founder and director of The Columbo Group, is a hospitality and nightlife entrepreneur. His career began during his student days when throwing parties was just a hobby.

In 1999, Steve joined forces with Keith Reilly on the launch of Fabric, the most significant club of its era. As promoter, Steve was one of the best known faces on the London club scene. After seven years, he went into business with his now business partner, Riz Shaikh. Together, the two of them opened their first site, the Old Queen’s Head in Islington, followed by Paradise By Way Of Kensal Green, Love and Liquor in Kilburn, XOYO in Shoreditch, The Blues Kitchen (Camden) and The Nest.

In January 2014, they announced the purchase of The Cat and Mutton on Broadway Market and Bar Music Hall in Shoreditch, the latter to be transformed into a second site for the groups Blues Kitchen concept by April 2014.

Steve used his previous experience to equip their pubs with multiple rooms, stages and sound systems, and super-club standard production values, rarely seen in pubs spaces before.
 
Unlike conventional operators in the sectors, Steve approaches business with an outsider’s perspective and an understanding of young Londoners’ resistance to one-dimensional offerings and need for great food, drinks and live music under one roof.

As a proud Londoner, born and bred, Steve is a champion of London’s nightlife and considers himself a custodian of some of its best loved pubs and clubs. He believes strongly in preserving and protecting the identity of local venues even as the group expands.
 
Wrath - What makes you angry about the hospitality industry?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
The generally poor service levels offered in British restaurants. I don’t see any reason why service shouldn’t always be great. I am not talking about rolling out the red carpet and going totally over the top, I just want a polite, engaging waiter that knows their product. The vast majority of restaurants in the States manage it, and so should we.
 
Greed - If all your food fantasies came true what would be on your Plate?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
As a confirmed dessert junkie it would have to be a salted caramel Knickerbocker glory.
 
Sloth - What do you do to unwind?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
Long walks on Primrose Hill and Hampstead Heath with the family.
 
Pride - What are you most proud of?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
My venues. I put my heart and soul into making them all places that I would personally like to spend time. I set high standards for myself and the group and hope that other people enjoy them as much as we do.
 
Lust - Is there anything that you are still lusting to achieve?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
In all honesty, I simply want the venues in The Columbo Group to be the best in London.
 
Envy - who are you most envious of?
Steve Ball Seven Sins
I think the people behind Soho House Group have done a fantastic job over the past couple of years.
 
Gluttony - have you ever over indulged? 
Steve Ball Seven Sins
I went on a road trip through the deep south of America last year, though Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana. We ate BBQ food every day for 5 days straight. Serious pork overload, it was all incredibly cooked and the BBQ joints were awesome but the lack of fruit and veg took its toll. At one of the hotels along the way, we asked at reception what they were serving for breakfast. The answer we received was simply, “Donuts & Coffee. 8am ‘til 11am”. When we asked if he had any fruit, he laughed and replied with “No, y’all need to drive to Walmart – 12 miles that’a’way….” 
 
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Seven Sins
Seven Sins
We put the spotlight on the industry's most recognisable faces in our new interview segment "Seven Sins". If you want to know what inspires the industry's movers and shakers or what your favourite food loving celebrity likes to indulge in then you'll find it in their Seven Sins.
 
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Alexandra Dudley Seven Sins
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Lucy Jones Seven Sins
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Lucy Jones
 
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