Editorial Board   

Mr. Bermingham

James Bermingham

Vice President, Montage Hotels & Resorts

James Bermingham is Vice President of Montage Hotels & Resorts and Managing Director of Montage Laguna Beach. In his roles, Mr. Bermingham oversees Montage Laguna Beach, Montage Beverly Hills, Montage Deer Valley, and Montage Residences Corporation. In addition, he supervises the management company in sales, human resources, culture development and training, and supports the development team. The veteran hotelier has been the Managing Director at Montage Laguna Beach from its opening in 2003, and has played an integral role in guiding the team that has helped Montage achieve significant industry and public acclaim. Driven by a philosophy which mandates excellence, a “good neighbor” policy and great attention to detail, Mr. Bermingham attributes Montage's resounding success to the exceptionally talented, committed and gracious staff. “This commitment is pervasive throughout the company,” he says. “Everyone who works here has a shared vision and enthusiasm for their job, which ultimately creates an unparalleled experience for our guests and residents.” Mr. Bermingham began his 25-year hospitality career as a manager trainee at the Clarence Hotel in his hometown of Dublin, Ireland, where he spent many years honing his talents. Realizing that he was ready to embark on a lifetime career in the hotel industry, he moved to London, England, where he began a career with ITT Sheraton and the Luxury Collection, which spanned ten years. He worked as General Manager of ITT Sheraton's Five Diamond St. Regis in Houston, Texas. During his tenure with ITT Sheraton and the Luxury Collection, Mr. Bermingham accrued many accolades for his accomplishments, including "The Divisional President Award" for outstanding achievement and the “Top Sales Team Award” for the North American division. In 1998, he joined Mirage Resorts as opening Vice President of Hotel Operations at the Beau Rivage in Biloxi, Mississippi. The following year, he moved his family to Washington, D.C. taking a position as General Manager of the acclaimed Latham Hotel, where he was also responsible for its sister property, the boutique Georgetown Inn. Here Mr. Bermingham earned the MeriStar Hotels & Resorts “General Manager Excellence Award - Best Food and Beverage.” Mr. Bermingham takes an active role in serving the surrounding community where he lives in Orange County, California. A hallmark of his community involvement is “Hearts of Montage,” a comprehensive outreach program which supports non-profit programs throughout Orange County. Demonstrating his commitment, Mr. Bermingham has served on numerous Orange County non-profit and hospitality industry boards and committees, among them the Boys & Girls Club of Laguna Beach, the Ocean Institute, the Anaheim and Orange County Convention and Visitor's Bureau and the Orange County Tourism Council.

Mr. Bermingham can be contacted at 949-715-6000 or jbermingham@montagehotels.com

Coming up in September 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.