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 April 2019...

Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.