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.
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.
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.
You think this city isn’t friendly? Think again. TravelMag.com reports that out of 30 destination cities, Philadelphia got the highest percentage of positive reviews of its three- and four-star hotels in the last year on Expedia.com.
The other cities in the top 10 were Portland, Seattle, Chicago, Charlotte, D.C., Boston, Austin, Indianapolis, and Houston.
Excellent Ratings Achieved for Hotels in Philadelphia [TravelMag.com]
The People Want Rocky: Why Did it Take the Art Museum and the City’s Tourism Folks So Long to Understand That?
Dan McQuade, God bless you. Your immortal post on Rocky’s run through the streets of Philadelphia has finally shaken the marble pillars that keep the city’s art elite and tourism snobs high above us all and removed from reality. And the reality is that Philadelphia is Rocky and Rocky is Philadelphia.
In case you missed it, Dan’s post on how far Rocky’s run to the Art Museum steps equaled in real miles was shared and spread around the world. The overwhelming response was only eye-opening to those who have been trying so long to ignore the allure of the movie legend.
And now, with Dan’s post and the Rocky musical opening, the city’s upper crust can’t ignore it anymore.
Good for you, Molly Phipps, of North Carolina’s Shelby Star. You may have chosen some of the expected — the Liberty Bell, Elfreth’s Alley, Ben Franklin, a cheesesteak — but you also chose a place that no one ever, never, ever puts on a list of things to do in Philadelphia, and especially in Old City:
“The fourth thing you can’t miss is a very special bookstore in Old City: Jules Goldman Books & Antiques on North 2nd Street. To say I love books would be a huge understatement, but this store had so much more. It had two floors, a whole section for art and a dusty room dedicated to old records. There was even a record set of the original airing of Orson Wells’ ‘War of the Worlds.’ If you’re a book lover, or just happen to be visiting Old City, I wouldn’t miss it.”
That is completely terrific. Here are some photos of what the store has…in store:
Sure, the federal government shutdown has closed lots of the sites you came to Philadelphia to see. But don’t be sad. There’s much more to Philly than Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. For instance:
The Trocadero: Why not take in a concert as a late-night escape? In mid-October, Comedy Bang! Bang! and Thomas Dolby’s Invisible Lighthouse Live will be hitting the venerable Troc. It is, after all, better to be blinded with science than to be blinded by the wheels flying off of our federal government, right?
Franklin Institute: Speaking of science, it’s not going anywhere during the shutdown. As if the NSA scandal doesn’t have you paranoid enough already, you can check out the Franklin Institute’s “SPY: The Secret World of Espionage” exhibit through Oct. 6. It’s just the latest reminder that your information isn’t the only thing being compromised on Capitol Hill.
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