By the NOLA Brew Bus team
Rolling into 2017, New Orleans is feeling the love after reviewing last year’s tourism statistics.
2016 welcomed 10.45 million visitors to the Big Easy, which we haven’t seen since 2004. Our city has been overflowing with the exuberance of visitors spicing up our local business revenue. Numbers don’t lie; with over a 5% spending increase of a whopping $7.41 billion dollars compared from 2015’s record, New Orleans breaks a new visitor expenditure record.
New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau President and CEO, Stephen Perry commented on the historic growth as “a combination of carefully targeted convention business and leisure travelers through tactics which leverage paid media, earned public relations exposure and special events to market New Orleans to the world.”
Tourism is a mainstay to New Orleans economics 101 and southern hospitality is our sweet tooth. With increased spending new opportunities sprout for investors and entrepreneurs. Just consider our surging local craft beer scene. New breweries are popping up all over the city, with six currently open and three more opening by summer 2017, a new trend is brewing interest for visitors and locals.
The BIG three pushing awareness “to reach as many potential visitors as possible with our creative messaging”, according to President and CEO Mark Romig, of the New Orleans Tourism Marking Corporation are: Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, the New Orleans CVB, and the Greater New Orleans Hotel & Lodging Association.
Let’s not forget New Orlean’s rich historic cultural experience anchored within our French and Spanish Colonial days is unlike any other city in America. The influence is found everywhere in our architecture, music, art, and of course our cuisine.
Pairing our history with our current love of vibrant festivals and costumes, NOCVB will be hyping our unique charm as our international exposure grows.
With two European direct flights landing in New Orleans from Frankfurt, Germany and London, England beginning in 2017. “Each of these flights will connect New Orleans to more than 120 destinations in Europe and beyond.”
The opportunities are boundless. Even Mayor Mitch Landrieu commented: “As we approach our tricentennial, I look forward to 2017 being an even bigger year for the tourism industry in New Orleans.”