Editorial Board   

Mr. Flores

Juan Carlos Flores

Executive Sommelier, Pueblo Bonito Hotels Resorts & Spas

Juan Carlos Flores is executive sommelier for Pueblo Bonito Hotels Resorts & Spas, a group of fine resort hotels in Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Flores is the 2004 Champion Sommelier of Mexico. Winning that title at age 27, he is the youngest sommelier ever to have represented Mexico in the Concours du Meilleur Sommelier du Monde-the World's International Sommelier Competition. He was recently named Sommelier of the Year by the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences, and now at age 28, is the youngest sommelier ever to have achieved the Star Diamond Award. Mr. Flores was named Mexico's champion after an intense competition in Mexico City in which ten of the country's top sommeliers were invited to demonstrate their general knowledge, pairing abilities, and individual presentation styles to a panel of judges. Judging criteria included knowledge of grape varieties, microclimates, and how weather patterns and soil composition affect grape growth and production in various years, as well as the participants' command of the English and French languages and their style of presentation. Mr. Flores has a degree in hotel management and speaks fluent English, Spanish and French. He studied the French language and cuisine in Monte Carlo and served as a sommelier at the Hotel de Crillon in Paris, under the tutelage of France's 2001 sommelier champion. He also studied in Nice, France, where he earned a French sommelier diploma and worked with internationally renowned Chef Alain Ducasse at Louis XV restaurant in Monte Carlo. Extensive gastronomical travel-to vineyards, distillers, farms, gastronomical events, wine tasting exhibitions, museums and restaurants-added to his expertise with wines. During his tenure with Pueblo Bonito, Mr. Flores studied at the Culinary Institute in Napa, California, under master sommelier Tim Gaiser. As executive sommelier, Mr. Flores oversees the wine collections of Pueblo Bonito's seven resort hotels and numerous restaurants, conducts wine tastings, provides pairing recommendations and serves as wine advisor and instructor. Mr. Flores joined Pueblo Bonito Hotels Resorts & Spas in 2002. The resorts include four properties in Cabo San Lucas: Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach Resort & Spa, Pueblo Bonito Ros'e, Pueblo Bonito Los Cabos and Pueblo Bonito Pacifica Holistic Retreat & Spa; two in Mazatl'an: Pueblo Bonito Mazatl'an and Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay. Samba Vallarta, an All-Inclusive Resort by Pueblo Bonito is located in Puerto Vallarta, with groundbreaking scheduled for Pueblo Bonito Punta Mita in 2006, also in Vallarta.

Mr. Flores can be contacted at jflores@pueblobonito.com.mx

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.