Visit Philly’s Angela Val on Her Trusty Leather Jacket, Her Mi-ki, and What Keeps Her Going

The new president and CEO of the region's tourism agency talks her favorite things and places in the city, and why she walks to work every day.

Angela Val and her Mi-ki dog / Photograph by Neal Santos

As the newly minted president and CEO of Visit Philly, Angela Val brings three decades of tourism expertise — from her early days in hotels to her recent economic-recovery work at Ready Set Philly — in her return to the agency charged with getting people to discover our town. Here’s what keeps the busy Point Breeze resident going.

At Home

Morning ritual: I write three things I’m grateful for, drink a warm glass of lemon water, and stretch.

Hair essential: Innersense Organic Beauty’s Sweet Spirit Leave-In Conditioner.

Photograph by Neal Santos

Favorite accessory: A pearl necklace from my parents when I graduated from Drexel. Very Jackie O. 

Photograph by Neal Santos

Always wearing: My Belstaff black leather bomber jacket. It screams 1990s. 

Photograph by Neal Santos

On my playlist: Prince; he is the GOAT. Best concert I have ever been to.

Sweet treat: Velatis candies. I’ve been hooked since I was a kid in Rockville, Maryland. 

Pet: George, my  14-year-old Mi-ki.

Photograph by Neal Santos

On The Job

What I love about Philly: I love that you can easily walk down the street in your neighborhood and run into someone you know. I love that we are unapologetically proud to dance to the beat of our drum. 

Greatest inspiration: My grandmother, who came to the U.S. from Germany after World War II. She had very little education but worked hard and built a great life. Her voice is the one I hear in my head that says, “Keep  at it; don’t stop.”

Getting around:  I walk from home to my office and meetings in Center City. This gives me an opportunity to clear my mind while discovering new spots to shop and dine.

Photograph by Neal Santos

On The Go

Best boutique:  Verde for accessories  and chocolates, Marsh + Mane for natural hair and skin products, Clay Studio and Open House for gifts. 

Verde in Midtown Village / Photograph by Neal Santos

Favorite spa: Kari Skin in Old City. I love their commitment to sustainability.

Local hangouts: The Happy Rooster for a quiet lunch by myself, American Sardine Bar for a cold beer and a basket of crispy onion rings, A.Bar for refreshing summer drinks.

Go-to restaurant: Jasmine Rice. I always get the lemongrass soup and lettuce wraps.

On weekends, you’ll find me: At brunch with friends. Lately I’ve been frequenting the Dutch. 

Phuket / Photograph by Martin Deja/Getty Images

Last vacation: Phuket, Thailand, with my husband.

Summer trip: Corolla in the Outer Banks. I’ve been going since 1978. 


Published as “Connoisseur: City Champion” in the August 2022 issue of Philadelphia magazine.