GREATER MIAMI CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU ANNOUNCES RECORD-BREAKING
TOURISM NUMBERS AND RALLIES TRAVEL INDUSTRY TO VOTE YES ON TOURISM INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENTS
Success of Greater Miami’s travel industry driven by GMCVB marketing efforts and
partnerships will be further supported by future tourism infrastructure investments such as the Convention Center Headquarter Hotel
MIAMI – October 26, 2018 – The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) restated today its support for election ballot items promoting tourism infrastructure investment during its annual meeting at the newly reimagined $620 million Miami Beach Convention Center (MBCC). The GMCVB presented the travel industry with the latest tourism performance metrics which include a record-breaking 16 million overnight visitors to the destination during September 2017-August 2018, representing a +1% increase over the same time the previous year; despite Hurricane Irma. The increase in overnight visitors drove a record-breaking $26.5 billion in expenditures, an increase of +2% compared to the same time period the previous year. The strength of Greater Miami’s travel and tourism industry is especially evident in hotel performance where revenue per available room (RevPar) grew by more than +10% over the same time period the previous year.
Hotel performance showed strengthening September 2017-August 2018 despite Hurricane Irma in September 2017 resulting in a temporary slowdown of tourism due to mandatory evacuations and airport closures. The impressive double-digit growth in RevPar was driven by the +7.9% increase in hotel room rate and the +2% growth in hotel occupancy during the September 2017-August 2018 time period – all record-breaking numbers. Hotel demand also reached record-breaking status and grew +2.2% in the same time period. The hotel industry’s success can be attributed in part to the GMCVB’s “Hotels First” Marketing Initiative which positions hotels as the focal point of a visitor’s vacation. The “Hotels First” marketing initiative worked in tandem with the GMCVB’s “Found in Miami” Global Marketing Campaign calling on travelers to discover the rich heritage of Greater Miami’s multicultural neighborhoods. The marketing programs along with the Bureau’s newly formed divisions: Multicultural Tourism & Development and Sports & Entertainment Tourism, have re-energized these emerging sectors thus generating hotel demand from these segments. The GMCVB’s marketing initiatives include message development surrounding tourism infrastructure enhancements seen over the last few years including: privately funded cruise terminals at PortMiami, a wave of new hotel inventory, new transportation offerings such as Brightline, the recently approved Jungle Island Hotel and the crown-jewel of tourism infrastructure investment – the $620 million renovated and expanded Miami Beach Convention Center (MBCC). The reimagined MBCC is a crucial element in the destination’s meetings and conventions sales package – considered incomplete without a headquarter convention hotel directly connected to the new MBCC.
“We are losing business to competing destinations offering updated convention centers with not just one, but sometimes two or three convention center headquarter hotels,” said William D. Talbert, III, CDME. “The proposed convention center headquarter hotel requires no public subsidy and generates revenue for city programs. The time is now to successfully finish the job and offer meeting planners and clients a competitive convention center package for Greater Miami and the Beaches.”
The GMCVB estimates $130 million in lost business in 2017 due to lack of a connected headquarter hotel. The proposed headquarter hotel will help attract citywide conventions ensuring the MBCC is filled with the type of business that generates less traffic and provides higher return-on-investment in the way of economic impact for the community. The destination experienced the first such meeting in September when the newly renovated MBCC hosted its first citywide convention, The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), and is now preparing to host its second convention, The International Society of Esthetic Plastic Surgery (ISAPS), in a few days. Medical and technology meetings such as these are considered a “sweet spot” for the new convention center. In just two short months, these conventions will have generated $10 million in economic impact for the community.
“We were fortunate to have some medical meetings booked in the new convention center, but we know they will not return, and other conventions like them will not book in Greater Miami without a connected headquarter convention center hotel,” said Bruce Orosz, GMCVB Board Chair. “The economic impact resulting from these conventions can be felt far and wide in the community and it’s why we are calling on the local business community to become a “Miami Magnet” and help attract more conventions to Greater Miami and the Beaches.”
The Miami Magnet Initiative is a program created by the GMCVB in order to recruit local business leaders to help secure meetings and conventions for Greater Miami. The program increases awareness of the economic impact generated by meetings and conventions and supports the national “Meetings Mean Business” coalition – platform bringing the industry together to emphasize the undeniable value generated by travel and face-to-face meetings. As Greater Miami’s meetings and conventions offerings continue to evolve, so too will the Miami Magnets’ opportunity to make an impact on the local community.
Ballot items supported by the GMCVB:
– The GMCVB supports all 6 Miami Beach specific ballot items: #384, #386, #388, #390, #392, #394. Ballot #388 will successfully complete the convention center district and provide the destination with a connected headquarter hotel. According to Miami Connect, the 100% privately financed hotel will bring $362 million in new investment to Miami Beach.
– The GMCVB supports City of Miami ballot item #378 to approve Miami Freedom Park, which could create 13,000 high-paying jobs for residents and generate more than $40 million in new tax revenue for the City of Miami, Miami-Dade County, Miami-Dade County Public Schools and the State of Florida – while providing the community with a 58-acre public park and additional greenspace at no cost to tax payers.
About the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau
The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) is an accredited not-for-profit sales and marketing organization whose mission is to attract visitors to Greater Miami and the Beaches for leisure, business and conventions. For a vacation guide, visit our website at www.MiamiandBeaches.com or call 1.888.76.MIAMI (US/Canada only) or 305.447.7777. To reach the GMCVB offices dial 305.539.3000. Meeting planners may call 1.800.933.8448 (US/Canada only) or 305.539.3071 or visit www.MiamiMeetings.com. To get further engaged with Miami and the Beaches, join the conversation by following us on our social media channels at Facebook.com/visitmiami, Twitter.com/miamiandbeaches, Instagram.com/miamiandbeaches & Pinterest.com/miamiandbeaches.