Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Jacobs

Stephen Jacobs

President & Founder, Stephen B. Jacobs Group P.C.

As a founder and president of The Stephen B. Jacobs Group, Stephen B. Jacobs sets the benchmark for the quality of design for which the firm is noted. He takes a hands-on interest in all of the firm's commissions, establishing the design direction and personally guiding the staff to ensure that the finished project meets the client's needs.

Prior to founding his own firm, Mr. Jacobs was employed at Whittlesey, Conklin and Rossant, where he was a designer and planner on several large-scale projects, including the development of the planned community of Reston, VA. Mr. Jacobs earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in architecture from Pratt Institute in 1963 and 1965, respectively. An early advocate of using obsolete buildings as a housing resource, Jacob's "sensitive renovation" projects have become textbook examples of how to develop the highest economic potential of an existing building while, at the same time, preserving its architectural and historic significance.

In the past decade, Mr. Jacobs, along with Andi Pepper, his frequent collaborator and affiliate interior designer, have become one of the most sought-after teams in hospitality industry. Their super-hip designs for The Library and Giraffe Hotels, followed by the stunning success of the Gansevoort in the Meatpacking District in New York, has led to tremendous recognition in the national press, as well as to more commissions throughout North America. In addition to his professional practice, Mr. Jacobs lectures extensively on architectural design and preservation subjects. He has been a guest lecturer and critic at Columbia University, City College, New York Institute of Technology, the Real Estate Institute of New York University and the Pratt Institute. He has won many awards and been the recipient of many honors in real estate, construction and design.

Please visit http://www.sbjgroup.com for more information.

Mr. Jacobs can be contacted at +1 212-421-3712 or contactus@sbjgroup.com

Coming up in December 2020...

Hotel Law: Protecting Guest Privacy

Every business is obligated to protect their customers from identity theft but unfortunately, data breaches have become all too common. In an effort to protect a guest's right to privacy and to safeguard their personal data, the European Union passed a General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that could hold hotels legally liable for any breaches that expose a customer's sensitive personal information. Though the GDPR only pertains to EU citizens' data, any international business that mishandles their data can be legally responsible. Another legal issue of concern is the fight involving hotel "resort fees." Several states attorney generals have recently filed suit against two major hotel chains in an effort to litigate this practice. Their suit alleges that these companies are "engaged in deceptive and misleading pricing practices and their failure to disclose fees is in violation of consumer protection laws." The suit seeks to force the hotel chains to advertise the true price of their hotel rooms. There are several other legal issues that the industry is being forced to address. Sexual harassment prevention in the workplace is still top of mind for hotel employers-particularly in New York and California, which now statutorily require harassment training. Hotels and motels in California will also soon be required to train all their employees on human trafficking awareness. Immigration issues are also of major concern to hotel employers, especially in the midst of a severe labor shortage. The government is issuing fewer H2B visas for low-skilled workers, as well as J-1 visas for temporary workers. Though there is little hope for any comprehensive immigration reform, hotel lobbying groups are actively seeking legal remedies to alleviate this problem. These are just a few of the critical issues that the December issue of the Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.