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 June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.