Editorial Board   

Mr. Bermingham

James Bermingham

Vice President, Montage Hotels & Resorts

James Bermingham is Vice President of Montage Hotels & Resorts and Managing Director of Montage Laguna Beach. In his roles, Mr. Bermingham oversees Montage Laguna Beach, Montage Beverly Hills, Montage Deer Valley, and Montage Residences Corporation. In addition, he supervises the management company in sales, human resources, culture development and training, and supports the development team. The veteran hotelier has been the Managing Director at Montage Laguna Beach from its opening in 2003, and has played an integral role in guiding the team that has helped Montage achieve significant industry and public acclaim. Driven by a philosophy which mandates excellence, a “good neighbor” policy and great attention to detail, Mr. Bermingham attributes Montage's resounding success to the exceptionally talented, committed and gracious staff. “This commitment is pervasive throughout the company,” he says. “Everyone who works here has a shared vision and enthusiasm for their job, which ultimately creates an unparalleled experience for our guests and residents.” Mr. Bermingham began his 25-year hospitality career as a manager trainee at the Clarence Hotel in his hometown of Dublin, Ireland, where he spent many years honing his talents. Realizing that he was ready to embark on a lifetime career in the hotel industry, he moved to London, England, where he began a career with ITT Sheraton and the Luxury Collection, which spanned ten years. He worked as General Manager of ITT Sheraton's Five Diamond St. Regis in Houston, Texas. During his tenure with ITT Sheraton and the Luxury Collection, Mr. Bermingham accrued many accolades for his accomplishments, including "The Divisional President Award" for outstanding achievement and the “Top Sales Team Award” for the North American division. In 1998, he joined Mirage Resorts as opening Vice President of Hotel Operations at the Beau Rivage in Biloxi, Mississippi. The following year, he moved his family to Washington, D.C. taking a position as General Manager of the acclaimed Latham Hotel, where he was also responsible for its sister property, the boutique Georgetown Inn. Here Mr. Bermingham earned the MeriStar Hotels & Resorts “General Manager Excellence Award - Best Food and Beverage.” Mr. Bermingham takes an active role in serving the surrounding community where he lives in Orange County, California. A hallmark of his community involvement is “Hearts of Montage,” a comprehensive outreach program which supports non-profit programs throughout Orange County. Demonstrating his commitment, Mr. Bermingham has served on numerous Orange County non-profit and hospitality industry boards and committees, among them the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, the Ocean Institute, the Anaheim and Orange County Convention and Visitor's Bureau and the Orange County Tourism Council.

Mr. Bermingham can be contacted at 949-715-6000 or jbermingham@montagehotels.com

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.