This fall has been an exciting time for Los Angeles tourism and promises to get even better, with the Museum Season Fall Arts Program and LA’s stellar museums generating tens of thousands of hotel room nights. In October, Los Angeles continued to see record occupancy levels and continued strong visitation. The glamorous new Tom Bradley International Terminal is giving LA a powerful competitive advantage, and we are securing more and more international routes. Several new LA hotels are around the corner. These are just a few of the positive developments you’ll find in this month’s newsletter.
LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. was among the featured speakers at the International Boutique & Lifestyle Leadership Symposium on Oct. 22 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. The event, hosted by the Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association (BLLA), was one of the largest gatherings of boutique & lifestyle independent hotel owners, hospitality executives and specialty hotel vendors. Numerous owners, general managers and executives from LATCB member hotels attended. The event also featured panel discussions, renowned speakers from the hotel industry, and high-level networking opportunities dedicated to the boutique hotel and lifestyle hospitality sector.
LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. was the featured speaker at the October Monthly Meeting of the Southern California Chapter of Meeting Professionals International (MPISCC), discussing “LA as a Meetings Destination.” At the lively and informative lunch program on Oct. 8 at the Langham Huntington Hotel, Pasadena, Wooden gave updates on visitation and hotel occupancy, new hotels under development in LA, the new Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX, and the LA Convention Center. The event offered a value opportunity to highlight Los Angeles as a unique, diverse and valuable destination for meetings and conventions to the audience of meeting planners.
LATCB President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. participated in the Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) Insights and Perspectives panel discussion at the 25th Annual Southern California Visitors Industry Outlook Conference on Thursday, Oct. 24, at the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center. The event, organized by The Collins College of Hospitality Management with PKF Consulting and the Long Beach Convention Center and Visitors Bureau, featured expert speakers from a range of travel sectors offering their assessments of the Southern California economic situation and how it will affect businesses in the tourism and hospitality sector. Wooden was joined by representatives of the Long Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau, the San Diego Tourism Authority on the panel, which was moderated by Dr. Edward A. Merritt, Interim Dean, Collins College of Hospitality Management.
Los Angeles received the Attitude Award for Destination of the Year on Oct. 16, 2013 at the annual awards show in London hosted by British gay lifestyle magazine, Attitude. The Attitude Awards recognize three categories – entertainment, lifestyle and politics, and fashion and style – honoring those most admired by Attitude and its readers. The award was presented by TV personality Andrew Haydn Smith. The award recognizes Los Angeles for being a vibrant modern city, a cool vacation retreat, a destination that has always been gay friendly, an entertainment capital, a hub for first-class cuisine, and a city that prizes its diverse cultural history. The awards show is supported by Virgin Holidays and benefits the work of the Elton John AIDS Foundation.
After seven years in Beijing serving as LATCB’s Regional Director for China, Jamie Lee will be returning to the Los Angeles headquarters as Director, China Services. In her new LA-based role starting in December, she will focus on the development of in-market services for Chinese travelers including LATCB’s “NiHao China” Welcome Program for Chinese visitors. Jamie opened LATCB’s Beijing office in 2006 and Shanghai office in March, 2013. During her tenure, China has become LA’s No. 1 overseas visitor market.
Kate Chang has been appointed as Jamie’s successor as LATCB Regional Director for China, based in Beijing and overseeing LATCB offices in Beijing and Shanghai. Most recently Kate served as Regional Director of Greater China for the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), an office which she established in 2005. Prior to PATA, Kate served as Deputy Director of the China National Tourist Office (CNTO) in New Delhi, India and Assistant Director of CNTO’s Australia office. She also worked as International Marketing Director for Events China, and her hotel experience includes a variety of positions with the Grand Hotel Beijing. She began her career at the Beijing Hotel and also worked at the Marina Mandarin in Singapore. She is a graduate of the Tourism & Hospitality Management School at Beijing International Studies University.
Following the success of last year’s fall arts and culture campaign, LATCB's “LA Museum Season” has already been highly successful, generating tens of thousands of room nights at LATCB member hotels, drawing cultural visitors to LATCB member attractions and drawing major media attention for the destination and our members and partners. As of Nov. 6, the campaign generated nearly 27,000 room nights, more than 45% more than at this point in last year’s campaign, with one week to go.
The six-week campaign offers visitors who book two nights or more at a participating Los Angeles hotel a voucher worth $500 for free admission and gift shop discounts at 29 of LA’s premier museums. LA Museum Season coincides with the cultural anniversaries of some of the city’s greatest museums and institutions, including the Natural History Museum which is marking its 100th anniversary and the Autry National Center which celebrates 25 years.
The campaign has generated national and international media attention, from KTLA Morning News to The Washington Post, Fresno Bee, LA Times, Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star. Here are some samples of of the media coverage:
LATCB has also pursued an aggressive advertising campaign with print and digital ads on CNtraveler.com, Tripadvisor.com, Expedia.com, Hotels.com, Sacramento Bee, Sacramento News, SF Chronicle and SF Weekly, Here Media and Centro Media. Brochure cards are placed at SoCal Amtrak stations and digital ads are running on www.Metro.net.
The LATCB PR Team has been working hard to keep LA and LATCB members and partners in the news and on the minds of travelers. The PR Team has been rolling out coordinated media efforts, pitching and securing stories about LA and our members and partners to top-of-the-line consumer and travel trade publications for business and leisure travel, in the U.S. and abroad. Here is a sampling of the media coverage Oct. 1-Oct. 31, 2013.
USA Today – “LA Can Get You Revved Up Even Without A Car”
USA Today, the mostly widely read newspaper in the United States, ran a story in October about LATCB’s Car Free LA program, as well astours, activities, neighborhoods and public transportation options that make exploring Los Angeles without a car fun and easy. The story reached a circulation of 1.73 million, for an equivalent ad value of $375,881. It was accompanied by an article in the online edition with a link to LATCB’s discoverLosAngeles.com website and the LATCB Car Free LA itineraries, reaching 18.2 million unique monthly visitors and generating an ad value of $168,050. To see the clip, click here.
Attitude Magazine – “Los Angeles: Destination of the Year”
Europe’s leading gay lifestyle magazine, based in the U.K., ran a story about Los Angeles being named 2013 Destination of the Year at the Attitude Awards in London. The article in the 60,000 circulation magazine read across Europe said “the City of Angels is one of the world’s great travel adventures.” To see the clip, click here.
The well-regarded German magazine Connoisseur Circle, with a circulation of 94,000, ran a 23-page piece with a beautiful cover photo of Walt Disney Concert Hall, and page after page of full-color photos and copy about hotels, attractions, dining and entertainment in Downtown, Hollywood, West Hollywood, Pasadena, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica. The article has an equivalent ad value of $288,000. To view the article click here.
Instinct Magazine: LA REDUX
The highly regarded gay lifestyle magazine Instinct, in publication since 1997, published an article on LA as a leading gay travel destination. The article reached a circulation of 128,258, delivering an equivalent ad value of $56,175. The article covered some of the LA region’s best attractions, dining, shopping, and museums. It showcased many of LA’s unique and exciting neighborhoods, including Santa Monica, Silver Lake, Downtown, Museum Row, Hollywood, Malibu and Beverly Hills. To view the clip, click here.
Discoverlosangeles.com, LATCB’s award-winning new website, was launched one year ago. Since then, traffic to discoverLosAngeles.com has grown by more than 65% to 6.5 million visitors. With more than 22 million page views annually, discoverLosAngeles.com has fast become one of the most highly trafficked destination websites in the U.S. It is one of the most powerful tools that we have to showcase LA’s fantastic hotels, attractions, dining, entertainment neighborhoods and experiences directly to travelers around the world. It offers tools that travelers can use through their entire travel cycle, from researching a destination and activities, to booking accommodations and entertainment, to using the Experience Planner to create custom, mapped itineraries to use when they arrive.
LATCB member Gregg Young, leader of Gregg Young and the 2nd Street Band, has been nominated by Hollywood Music In Media Awards (HMMA) for Best Jazz for his original composition, “Funk Fusion.” Gregg is the first musician to have been nominated in four different genres at the HMMA. He is currently an Award Winner of Best Blues, Best Funk/Groove, Best Latin Nominee and Best Pop Nominee. His first Win was for Smooth Jazz Artist of the Year in the 17th Annual Los Angeles Music Awards. For more information, visit http://www.discoverlosangeles.com/what-to-do/gregg-young-2nd-street-band
Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) has achieved dramatic growth in the number of new and expanded international air routes to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the number of international passengers arriving at LAX, and implementations of the largest next-generation jets like the Airbus A-380 and Boeing 747 -800.
Since 2011, LAX has gained 10 new overseas international air services. In 2013, LAX will have added two all-new daily international flights and four upgrades of existing flights to next-generation aircraft. In 2012, LAX added three new international flights, four aircraft upgrades, and three expansions of existing services. In 2011, LAX added five new international flights, three aircraft upgrades, and expansion of an existing service. The new service into L.A. hails from Japan, China, Germany, France, Australia, the U.K., Dubai and Brazil - some of the top-spending traveling countries.
Etihad Airways recently announced that in June 2014 it will start daily round trip service from Abu Dhabi to LAX, making Los Angeles its fourth U.S. destination. It was announced at the World Routes Conference on Oct. 7 in Las Vegas.