England-based restaurateurs Raja Majid and Alena Olevic-Majid moved to Las Vegas in the fall of 2005. Unsatisfied by the level of Indian food available in their new city they took matters into their own hands, and in April 2006, opened Origin India Restaurant and Bar. Drawing from their restaurant experience in England, the couple knew that Las Vegans had not yet been exposed to refined Indian cuisine, the likes of which is found throughout London and its suburbs. To them, a true Indian dining experience coupled mouthwatering cuisine with attentive customer service, framed within a warm and inviting atmosphere.
Raja is a true believer that good fortune is to be shared with others. Over the years, his businesses have helped numerous charitable organizations. In addition to raising funds, Raja’s restaurant in Wokingham, UK was the first in the county to welcome guide dogs. He also helped raise awareness in the UK that business should play a part in the community by joining his team to help clean the town’s graffiti.
A native of Kashmir, Raja moved to England as a boy to attend school and started working as a waiter at Passage to India, a restaurant in Berkshire, to help pay his tuition. At the age of 18, while attending a college that specialized in hospitality, he was offered an amazing opportunity to become a partner of Passage to India and his passion for the restaurant industry was born. Raja continued as a successful restaurateur and over the next 20 years opened several restaurants from Portugal to Philadelphia, though his most beloved restaurant was in London and featured Indian fine-dining. After years of good press and critical acclaim, Raja’s London restaurant Origin Asia (a “Best in Britain” or BIBA award-winner) was invited to cater former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Annual Summer Garden Party, one of London’s social events of the year, and an event Raja would cater for the following seven years.
Alena was born and raised in Bosnia, former Yugoslavia, and at the age of 17 moved to England to continue her education and escape the brutal war in her home country. After meeting and marrying Raja while working as a server inside a popular India restaurant, she returned to Las Vegas to join her family and finish her college education. She received both her Bachelors and Masters degrees in Accounting from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Alena is a registered CPA and the CFO for Origin India Restaurant and Bar.
The couple believes that good fortune is to be shared with others, and over the years, their businesses have helped numerous charitable organizations both in England and Las Vegas. In addition to raising funds, Raja’s restaurant in Wokingham (UK) was the first in the county to welcome guide dogs into the establishment, something that was not typically tolerated. He also helped raise awareness that business should play a part in the community by recruiting his staff to help clean the town’s graffiti which had become a problem. Carrying over this belief in his new home of Las Vegas, Raja is an active member for several charitable organizations, and in 2008, received the “Good Neighbor Award” from The Nevada Restaurant Association given to a restaurateur who goes above and beyond in support of community activism.