Director of Restaurants, Harbor Beach Resort and Spa/Marriott International
Joseph LaFleur brings a lifetime of hands-on experience as well as a strong business acumen to his current role as Director of Restaurants at Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale, FL, the city’s preeminent luxury resort. Joseph oversees the day-to-day operations of seven food and beverage outlets – including three restaurants, two bars, room service and mini bar — that exceed $8 million annually at the 650-room property. With his strong sense of organization and innovation, he has worked with the food and beverage team to assist in creating a daily lobby experience for hotel guests, to designing unique catered functions for the resort’s private membership club, to helping implement a program that brings associates from top hospitality schools in Switzerland and Germany to work in the hotel.
Joseph was born to the food and beverage discipline, working as early as age 11 in his family’s popular casual dining restaurant in Massachusetts. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree from the College of Food and Natural Resources at the University of Massachusetts School of Management, and then to earn a master’s degree in Business Administration from Western New England College in Massachusetts. Joseph brought his business expertise to bear when he went to work for Canta Napoli Restaurants, Inc., in West Springfield, MA, coordinating that operation’s business plan to purchase a new 120-seat upscale family restaurant and expanding it to two restaurants. After three years there, he moved on to become the restaurant manager for the legendary Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami. At Doral, he oversaw the operations of four restaurants, and among his many accomplishments was to devise a new wine list for the entire resort, including the catering and conference service department. Joseph, a Certified Sommelier (with the United States Sommelier Association), takes a keen interest in this aspect of service, and at Harbor Beach is also responsible for approving all beverage-related purchases.
“I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food”. ~ W.C. Fields