Old School Hospitality, a family-owned and operated South Florida restaurant management group, announced it has appointed James Flanigan, son of founder Paul Flanigan (who established the company in 1986), as Chief Executive Officer.
Before joining Old School Hospitality, James worked as an accountant and then as an attorney with Tripp Scott in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Since 2015, James has served as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Legal Officer of Old School Hospitality. Now, as CEO, he will be responsible for managing the complete umbrella of the company’s operations. Paul Flanigan will make his transition to President Emeritus, marking the first major executive management change for the South Florida restaurant group in more than 35 years. Their longtime business partner Frank Zaffere will continue to serve as the company’s Chief Operating Officer.
From humble beginnings, James started “working” in the restaurant business in his early childhood, shadowing his father and helping with the operation of the restaurant as his father was growing the business. Over the years as he developed in the family and even while he worked as an accountant and an attorney, James has worked in every position in the front and back of the restaurants. Following tradition with an innovative spin, in his new role as CEO, James plans to expand the business with a focus on Broward County. Old School has three immediate projects in the pipeline: (1) an expansion of the footprint of the existing Quarterdeck in Dania Beach with a repurposed shipping container project on the beach adjacent to the restaurant, and (2) the opening of a second Whiskey Neat Cocktail Lounge in Plantation, and (3) the creation of a new upscale tiki-bar concept named the Hula Kai on 17th Street Causeway in Fort Lauderdale.
For more than three decades, Old School Hospitality has grown exponentially from its first location of Quarterdeck, a neighborhood seafood bar to today. Old School Hospitality now owns and operates multiple restaurant brands throughout Broward and Miami-Dade counties, including five Quarterdeck locations in Fort Lauderdale, Davie, Plantation, and Dania Beach; a Whiskey Neat cocktail lounge in Fort Lauderdale; and Beach Bar @ Newport Pier in Sunny Isles Beach. The brand has mastered casual Florida dining, focusing on neighborhood-oriented strategies in its expanding portfolio.