The year 1999 marked a promising start on the business venture of Mr. Leslie C. Paelmo and his wife, Mrs. Dolores G. Paelmo who came from a family of wood carvers from the province of Laguna. Looking at the prospect of marketing Filipino treats which the province is most famous for, the couple opened a small "pasalubong" or gift shop in Tagaytay City named "Leslie's Pasalubong" selling "special" buko pies as its banner product to passing tourists and locals wanting a taste of native Filipino delicacies
With the success of their initial endeavor, Mr. and Mrs. Paelmo were enthused with the idea of expanding their operations by having three ()3 Nipa Huts for rent along with their "pasalubong" shop. From there, they further grew the business by building 10 Nipa Huts that eventually became the home of the first "Leslie's Restaurant" when they decided to foray into the restaurant industry. Keeping in line with their main thrust of showcasing everything that is proudly Filipino, the restaurant's sumptuous main dishes consisted of Bulalo, Kare-kare, Sisig and Grilled Sea foods which were sold at affordable prices.
In a short span of four (4) years brought about by the hard work and dedication of Mr. and Mrs. Paelmo with the help of their able staff, the restaurant relocated to a bigger place at Aguinaldo Highway, Silang Crossing West, Tagaytay City in order to better service their loyal and new customers. Their new site which became an eminent architectural structure mainly built from wood and stone further accentuated the modern Filipino theme that the establishment harped on combined with a blend of Spanish style.