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But Ms Guarin ended the relationship over the summer.
“Based on what he said, she split with him,” the friend said.
The 29-year-old would come a few times a week and order a bourbon and coke or a pint of bitter.
He might cut loose with a group of his friends from the bank, racking up enormous bills of at least £500.
After that, his behaviour grew increasingly erratic.
He would vanish for days and then arrive at the Old China Hand to wolf down several meals at once, eating fish and chips and a steak and kidney pie at the same time.
And he would seek out women at the New Makati, where he eventually found one of his two alleged victims last week.
According to the police’s timeline of events, he may even have returned to the pub for a pint after allegedly killing his first victim, 25-year-old Sumarti Ningsih, whose body was found in a suitcase on his 31st-floor balcony.
But often he would walk for exactly four minutes to his local pub, The Old China Hand, a dimly lit wood-panelled room seemingly transported from an English suburb to the heart of Hong Kong.