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 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.