In the first six months of 2015, Philadelphia’s tourism industry has been on a record-setting pace. And with the World Meeting of Families scheduled for September, there’s a good chance that this year could be historic for the industry.
Visit Philadelphia has released a new report saying that Center City Philadelphia hotels have had occupancy rates of 76.2 percent in the first half of 2015 — compared to 75.2 percent in 2014. All three major market segments (leisure, group, commercial) increased in the first half of the year. Read more »
Photo illustration | Alyse Moyer. Liberty Bell | Jeff Fusco, Visit Philly. Sugar House | G. Widman, Visit Philly, Tourists and Ride the Ducks, shutterstock.com
So, you’re planning a trip to Philadelphia to see the pope, or for a convention, or for the Dalai Lama, or to attend the DNC, or, you know, just to take a trip. There’s a lot to see and do here, but there are also plenty of tourist traps. And since we want you to have the best possible experience while you’re visiting our city, we thought it important to warn you about them as well — and offer some alternatives worth writing home, or at least posting on Facebook, about. Without further ado, here are the worst tourist attractions in Philadelphia — ranked. Read more »
Locals know that Philadelphia is a great city, and that it’s only getting better with time. Well, the word has gotten out, and Philly is quickly becoming a booming tourist destination. That’s great news! It’s wonderful for the local economy, the arts and entertainment programs, and for the city’s reputation in general. BUT IT NEEDS TO STOP IMMEDIATELY. This place is crowded as it is, and I don’t need more tourists hogging every inch of the sidewalk with their Segways, selfie sticks, and (gasp!) duck callers. Remember, this is the City of Brotherly Love, not the City of Brother and 150 of His Buddies from Akron-ly Love. Read more »
1. Philly’s Tourism Boom
The News: Summer is prime time to see out-of-towners riding the duck boats, running the Rocky steps, and checking out all the weird stuff in the Mutter Museum. And it all means dollar signs for Philadelphia. Just check out these 2014 tourism numbers recently released by Visit Philadelphia: 39.7 million day and overnight visitors created an economic impact of $10.4 billion, supporting 92,000 full-time jobs and generating $655 million in state and local taxes. Nice. Read more »
Visit Philly — previously known as the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation — produces a lot of videos touting Philadelphia as an awesome place to visit. And the latest one, which Visit Philly released last week, is our favorite so far. And not just because it’s cheesesteak-free. Read more »
Philadelphians and visitors wanting a bird’s-eye view of the city will get their chance: Mayor Nutter on Tuesday announced plans for an observation deck at One Liberty Place. Uwishunu reports:
Today, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter announced that Montparnasse 56 Group is bringing a brand new observation deck experience to Philadelphia in Summer 2015.
Montparnasse 56 (or M56) — a Parisian-based company that operates observation decks in the John Hancock Tower in Chicago and the Montparnasse 56 Tower in Paris — will be building the observation deck on the 57th floor of One Liberty Place in downtown Philadelphia.
There are currently only a few spots around the city that offer sky-high views of Philadelphia, including the City Hall Tower Observation Deck, R2L and Nineteen.
More details, including the deck’s official name, remain to be revealed.
Philadelphia has two agencies that entice outsiders to come spend money here: Visit Philadelphia appeals to tourists; the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau tries to bring in big groups and trade associaitions for their annual meetings.
Now, City Controller Alan Butkovitz says the two agencies should become one. Philadelphia Business Journal reports the move could save $1 million annually.
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A new report says Philadelphia’s national parks generated $196 million for the city in 2013 — being the birthplace of American democracy, turns out, can be somewhat lucrative.
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A new report from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of National Travel and Tourism ranks Philadelphia the 13th-most visited city for overseas visitors to the country and says, in Philadelphia, most of those people come from the United Kingdom.
New York City is the most-visited city, followed by Miami, Los Angeles, Orlando and San Francisco. Pennsylvania is the 10th-most visited state, with New York the most-visited state overall.
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Since May, the Inquirer‘s Karen Heller has been covering the humorously bureaucratic scrap between the city’s two civic marketing firms and their conflicting efforts to “brand” Philadelphia with an official come-hither tourism slogan.
Launched in early 2014, the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB), in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce and other outfits, debuted a new campaign: “PHL: Here for the Making.” The tagline’s meant to puff up Philly’s status as a hotbed of hands-on entrepreneurs, as well as hip-ify the city by slanging up its airport code, a la Portland, Oregon’s popular use of “PDX.” It hasn’t gained too much day-to-day traction just yet, due at least in part to skewering by critics like Heller. “Perhaps it was a late-night gambit where the exhausted branding experts, having jettisoned a thousand previous ideas, threw it up against the wall to see if it would stick,” she wrote.
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