I recently attended the IPW travel conference here in Orlando, and at the kick-off media brunch, Visit Orlando announced a new marketing campaign called “Orlando – the Never Ending Story.”
Visit Orlando President and CEO George Aguel was joined in the presentation by (in photo from left to right): Adrian Jones, Divisional Director – LEGOLAND Florida Resort; Peter Kacheris, Managing Director at Waldorf Astoria Orlando & Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek; Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs; and Roger Dow, President & CEO U.S. Travel Association.
Visit Orlando, the destination’s official tourism association, has announced that more than 62 million people visited Orlando in 2014. The announcement marks a new all-time record for the U.S. travel industry, solidifying Orlando’s position as the most visited destination in the nation.
As a result, a record 32 million room nights were sold in Orlando in 2014, resulting in bed tax collections topping $200 million for the first time in Orange County, home to the Central Florida tourism district.
Returning for its ninth year, Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month will run the month of September, with a special preview week starting August 25, 2014.
Through September 30, more than 75 Orlando-area restaurants are serving up dining savings by offering delicious three-course dinners for only $33 a person.
New to Magical Dining Month are restaurants like Kasa Restaurant & Bar, Mingo’s, Bistro CloClo, and Eddie V’s. They join returning favorites like Emeril’s Orlando, Emeril’s Tchoup Chop, The Capital Grille, Siro: Urban Italian Kitchen, Funky Monkey Wine Company, and Maxine’s on Shine.
$1 from every meal served during Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month will benefit the Foundation for Foster Children, which supports local foster youth by providing intensive tutoring, typical childhood experiences and volunteer mentors who assist foster children transition into adulthood successfully.
Visit Orlando is also giving visitors a way to extend the savings even further with Magical Nights. More than 15 dine-and-stay packages pair dinner for two with a one-night hotel stay, starting from $149 per night including:
Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress – Standard Guest Room and dinner for two at Hemingway’s Restaurant, starting at $149 per night
Rosen Shingle Creek – Deluxe Room and dinner for two at A Land Remembered or Cala Bella, starting at $185 per night
The Alfond Inn – Standard Guest Room and dinner for two at Hamilton’s Kitchen, starting at $249 per night
Visit Orlando CEO Gary Sain passed away on Friday night after giving a speech at a fundraiser. He was 61 years old.
You may not be familiar with his name, but Swain headed up the Orlando tourism board and was the man behind the popular “Orlando Makes Me Smile” campaign.
According to officials, Sain was one of the driving forces behind making Orlando the No. 1 family destination in the world since he took over the Orlando Tourism Bureau in 2007, renaming it Visit Orlando to help attract even more tourists.