L.A. Tourism at Work - February 2016


Annual Japanese Agent-Kai Tour Operators New Year's Luncheon
L.A. Tourism hosted its annual Agent-Kai New Year’s Celebration Luncheon on January 13, 2016 in Downtown at the Italian restaurant, Vespaio for 24 members of Agent-Kai, an association of general managers from the top Los Angeles-based Japanese tour operators. The event highlighted L.A.’s tourism and cultural updates. After lunch, the group visited The Broad museum. Japan is L.A.’s number two market for overseas visitors with 319,000 Japanese visitors in 2015, spending more than $407 million in the local economy in 2014 (the most recent year for which spending figures are available).

Qatar Airways Launch
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In celebration of Qatar Airways launch of the new daily, non-stop service from Doha to LAX on January 1, the air carrier hosted a gala event at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood for local dignitaries, travel trade and press on January 12. The celebratory evening was hosted by Group Chief Executive, His Excellency, Mr. Akbar Al Baker and included a VIP reception and dinner followed by an exclusive performance by superstar Mariah Carey.  LAWA officials and L.A. Tourism staff worked to secure the new flight and attended the gala in support of the launch.

U.S.-China Year of Tourism
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President Obama and President Xi Jinping of China announced 2016 is the official “U.S.-China Year of Tourism.” This cooperative initiative will aim to expand travel between our countries, further developing the positive people-to-people interaction that is the foundation of our bilateral relationship.

To mark this designation, L.A. Tourism President & CEO Ernest Wooden Jr. signed a memorandum of understanding with Zhu Li, CEO of the Tourism Administration of Guangzhou Municipality on January 19, 2016. The signing represented good faith in future cooperation and communication between L.A. Tourism and the Tourism Administration of Guangzhou Municipality. With intentions of celebrating the 35th anniversary of L.A.’s sister-city relationship with Guangzhou, L.A. Tourism and the Tourism Administration of Guangzhou Municipality will continue to strengthen the bilateral communication and cooperation in the tourism industry.

Aer Lingus Event
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L.A. Tourism Europe representatives Francine Sheridan and Hayley French partnered with Aer Lingus to host key Irish tour operators at the Irish Travel Awards.  The event is held on the eve of the Holiday World trade/consumer show. Aer Lingus will start non-stop flights from Dublin to LAX on May 4, 2016. 

L.A. Tourism – France
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L.A. Tourism’s France representatives participated in two workshops organized by the Visit USA Committee France in Bordeaux and Lille on January 19 and 21, 2016 where they conducted appointments with 150 travel agents. The France office a training with Air Tahiti Nui on January 12, 2016 for 14 travel agents. An additional training was held with XL Airways on January 26, 2016 for 60 travel agents. 

L.A. Tourism – China
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L.A. Tourism and Hainan Airlines co-hosted a press conference in Changsha announcing the launch of new air service between Changsha and LAX on January 16, 2016. Hainan airlines executive Mr. Hou Wei and L.A. Tourism representative Kate Chang delivered remarks during the event to more than 200 local government officials, media and trade partners. The announcement has garnered more than 340 press clippings worth more than $605,000 in PR value.
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Hainan airlines inaugural flight from Changsha to LAX took place on January 21, 2016 as six Hainan airlines executives were joined by nine journalists for a VIP FAM. Upon landing at LAX, a press conference was held at the airport’s Terminal 2 and was followed by a tour of the newly remodeled terminal. During the FAM, Hainan Deputy Chairman Mr. Mu met with Ernest Wooden Jr., President & CEO of L.A. Tourism to exchange ideas for further cooperation between the two organizations.
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L.A. Tourism hosted a high-end MICE webinar through M&C China on January 12, 2016. Five guest speakers participated in the webinar including Vice Consul U.S. Embassy Beijing Mr. Obio Ntia, President of Bravo Links Integrated Marketing Co. Mr. Guo Jun Hua, Associate Regional Director of Sales of Greater China Worldwide Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts Mr. Vincent Wong, Assistant Guest Relations Manager Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills Ms. Wang Jing and L.A. Tourism representative James Zheng. Each speaker presented and participated in a discussion panel and Q&A session. A total of 222 trade professionals registered for the webinar.
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L.A. Tourism China launched the L.A. Hotels Sales Promotion with Gullivers Travel Association (GTA) in 2015 with the objective of increasing L.A.’s brand awareness in the China trade market as well as revenue. L.A. Tourism representative Selin Lin delivered GTA Hotel Booking Awards to Shenzhen Dida Travel Service and GZL International Travel Service Ltd in January and also presented information on LAX, new L.A. attractions and additional marketing resources for future cooperation.
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L.A. Tourism Shanghai attended the first Club California activity organized by Visit California on January 30-31, 2016. Updates on what’s new and happening in California were presented to ten trade professionals and managers from key Shanghai travel operators. L.A. Tourism provided updates on the latest hotel and attraction developments and presented resources such as WeChat, helloLA and L.A. Angel Academy.

L.A. Tourism Guangzhou office joined the BrandUSA in-house training in Shenzhen & Guangzhou January 26-29, 2016. Representative Selin Lin delivered a 20-minute presentation to six travel agents which focused on LAX updates, new L.A. attractions, the China-Ready program and L.A. Angel Academy.

L.A. Tourism - Japan
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L.A. Tourism Asia Pacific Office hosted breakfast seminars in three major metropolitan cities, Tokyo, Yokohama and Chiba, targeting travel consultants in January.  American Airlines, Universal Studios Hollywood, Hertz Rent-a-Car and Premium Outlet partnered with L.A. Tourism for the seminars. There were 103 travel agents that participated in total as each partner provided information on their latest products and services. L.A. Tourism presented updated information on LAX and other new attractions.


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L.A. Tourism Sales hosted a group of meeting & event professionals from Streamlinevents for a meetLA Experience January 5-7, 2016. The FAM focused on Downtown Los Angeles showcasing more than 16 member partners, hotels and venues. Highlights included visits to the Petersen Automotive Museum, The Broad, and a sneak-peak of OUE Skyspace. The FAM included attending the People’s Choice Awards on Wednesday, January 6, 2016 at Microsoft Theatre.  Accommodations were at the completely revitalized Sheraton Los Angeles Downtown Hotel. 


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L.A. Tourism Public Relations, in partnership with Hainan Airlines, hosted nine Chinese journalists in celebration of the airline’s inaugural flight to Los Angeles January 21-24, 2016. Their educational itinerary showcased only-in-L.A. experiences including a visit to the Dolby Theatre, Universal Studios Hollywood, Citadel Outlets and Lakers game at the STAPLES Center. Outlets on the trip included China Daily, CCTV, CAAC News and National Geographic Traveler. Accommodations were provided by The LA Hotel Downtown.

Nothing defines Los Angeles more than the signature style and glamour of one of the most exciting times of the year: Awards Season! And to celebrate, L.A. Tourism Public Relations hosted a “Live like a Celebrity” FAM January 3 – 7, 2016, consisting of eight journalists from Australia, New Zealand, U.S., Canada and Mexico. During the five-day press trip to Los Angeles, the group’s educational itinerary included a series of A-list celebrity experiences including breaking a sweat at a celeb-favorite gym, participating in VIP tours of the legendary Warner Bros. Studios and Dolby Theatre, shopping with personal stylist to the stars Joe Katz, and getting red carpet ready before attending the People’s Choice Awards at the Microsoft Theater. Outlets on the trip included Glamour.com, Elle Australia, Elle Mexico, Elle Canada, Vancouver Sun and Travel + Leisure. 

The saying, “nobody walks in L.A.” could soon be forgotten as pedestrian and bike-friendly options are popping up throughout Los Angeles. To help shine the spotlight on these experiences, L.A. Tourism Public Relations hosted Caitlin Walsh Miller, passport editor of EnRoute (Air Canada’s inflight magazine) January 12 – 17, 2016. The educational itinerary showcased bike-friendly experiences in Los Angeles during the six-day trip. Experiences included a preview tour of The Cannibal LA, biking in Koreatown, Ballona Creek Bike Path, among other biking-related activities. Accommodations were provided by two bike-friendly hotels, The LINE Hotel and Farmer’s Daughter. The article will appear in July 2016 issue within a nine-page feature, and possible cover story.

Writer Rob McFarland from Fairfax Traveller Australia visited Los Angeles January 29- February 1, 2016 for future coverage on L.A.’s culinary and nightlife scene. Accommodations were provided by The Line Hotel.