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TOURISM NOW
TOURISM NOWAUGUST 12, 2009

Photo: Ontario Tourism, 2009


IN THIS ISSUE - HIGHLIGHTS

  • Caribana nets radio coverage
  • Government infrastructure stimulus
  • Three more sleeps until ASAE & The Center

TOURISM SNAPSHOT
According to Smith Travel Research, the first six months of the year saw hotel room nights sold in Toronto decrease 9.1 per cent to 3.8 million compared with last year's 4.2 million. However, room nights attributable to "transient" bookings (of 10 rooms or less) are flat at 2.5 million, with "group" room nights (bookings of 11 rooms or more) down to 1.1 million from 1.5 million last year. (Contract rooms are occupied at rates stipulated by contracts - such as for airline crews and permanent guests.)
Hotel Room Nights Sold Jan to June 2008 and Jan to June, 2009
 
  2008 2009 Change
Transient 2,521,900 2,503,000 -0.7%
Group 1,450,800 1,093,400 -24.6%
Contract 243,400 234,000 -3.9%
Total 4,216,100 3,830,400 -9.1%


HIGHLIGHTS
First Nations Assembly Source for Leads
Tourism Toronto is pursuing First Nations conferences for the GTA, so having a strong presence at the Assembly of First Nations National Assembly was a priority. At the meeting, which took place in Calgary July 23, Tourism Toronto/Tap Resources trade show booth welcomed over 600 attendees, showcasing the GTA and the great services Tourism Toronto and our destination partners offer for the Aboriginal segment. Qualified contacts were made with a number of Aboriginal meeting buyers that will consider the GTA as a destination for major upcoming conferences, AGMs and seminars.

Visiting Media Jump Up for Caribana
Tourism Toronto's Media Relations team recently hosted WVON's the Traveling Eye radio show out of Chicago for Caribana. On July 31, WVON did a live broadcast from the Intercontinental Toronto Centre hotel that focused on Toronto's black history, Caribana and general travel tips to the city. Additionally, on August 7, the show did a recap report on the Caribana parade and what they did in Toronto apart from Caribana. WVON is a widely-heard and respected radio station serving the greater Chicago area oriented to an African-American audience.

World Deaf Athletics Championships Considers Toronto
Tourism Toronto's Sports sales team led the charge with a successful site inspection for the second World Deaf Athletics Championships in July 2012. Members of the bid committee with Ontario Deaf Sports Association and the Canadian Deaf Sports Association had two days of formal site inspections, visiting hotels and residences in the city, sports facilities and various attractions. Toronto is competing against Japan and Germany and a decision will be known in October 2009. Thanks to our members for making this site inspection go smoothly.

Drive Market Reached With TIFF News
The Cleveland Plain Dealer's travel section recently featured an article on the Toronto International Film Festival and the celebrity-friendly neighbourhood, Yorkville. "Toronto is always fun, but you can spot movie stars if you go to the film festival" captures the perfect cinephile's experience in Toronto throughout the festival mentioning key hotels to stay in, dining options and attractions. The Cleveland Plain Dealer is a daily newspaper distributed throughout the important drive market of Northeast Ohio with a circulation of 291,630.

Are You Experient?
From August 2-5, Experient hosted more than 300 of their top account managers and clients, plus key industry supporters, in the Washington, DC area. This annual event offers an excellent opportunity to talk with association and corporate decision-makers as well as their Experient account managers who influence many destination and venue decisions. As a strategic partner along with the Canadian Tourism Commission, Tourism Toronto participates each year in this important gathering. The tone at this year's E4 Conference was subdued but generally positive, with planners predicting a slow but steady return to stronger trade.

Summer Re-Run
The article "As seen on TV: Father, daughter reunion" that highlights Toronto through the eyes of a "Degrassi High" fan, originally published in the Boston Globe, got extra mileage as it was recently picked up for the print and online versions of the Miami Herald. The Herald has a circulation of 270,166 and the website receives 1,900,000 unique visitors a month.

Infrastructure Stimulus Fund - Not-for-Profit Intake Launched
The Government of Ontario in partnership with the Government of Canada has announced the launch of the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund - Not-for-Profit Organizations Intake. Projects that are eligible include art galleries, libraries, museums, performing arts centres (for the creation or presentation of the arts) and projects that preserve or enhance heritage structures. Multi-purpose community centres with an arts component are also eligible. The deadline for applications is August 18, 2009. Guidelines are available via: www.bcfontario.ca. Organizations can obtain an application user account by emailing: +SIMSI-SPGII@infc.gc.ca.

Golf Media Follow Through
Results from a recent golf-oriented press trip Tourism Toronto's U.S. media relations team hosted July 22-26, have begun to appear. First was an article on WorldGolf.com, which specializes in golf news, course reviews and travel, and enjoys 264,829 monthly unique visitors. As well, Michigan Talk Network's morning live broadcasts from the Hotel Le Germain, which featured interviews with several Tourism Toronto attraction, golf and hotel partners, can be heard here: www.michigantalknetwork.com/mps/new/podcasts.html. The show reaches an audience of 200,000 listeners in Michigan.

WHAT'S NEXT
It's Almost Here!
As many of you know, August 15-18 is ASAE & The Center for Association Leadership's 2009 Annual Conference in Toronto. This annual event ("the Super Bowl of conferences" as we're referring to it around here) will bring together more than 4,300 association professionals and the industry suppliers that support them. Each year, participation in this conference is an important part of Tourism Toronto's strategy to keep Toronto's profile high with potential association decision makers and this year it is an unprecedented opportunity to show off our great destination and to identify a significant number of future business opportunities. (A survey of the 2,100 association executives expected to attend the 2009 Annual Meeting showed that 91 per cent identified themselves as either a major decision maker, influencer or in a position to recommend destinations and venues for future meetings!) Not only has our destination been gearing up for many months to host this prestigious event, more importantly, we're expecting to see an effect for years to come.

We are still in need of volunteers, so if you are able to assist, please see the item below, under Member Focus.

Global Meeting Professionals Brain Trust
On August 15, in conjunction with our partners the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Tourism Toronto will host the Professional Convention Management Association International Summit. This important event provides a forum for 100 global meeting suppliers and the leading association executives with international meeting needs to put their heads together and discuss the current state of the industry and what the future may bring.

Canadian Corporate Meeting Planners Get VIP Treatment at IncentiveWorks
Tourism Toronto has joined forces again with Rogers' Meetings and Incentive Travel Magazine and other industry partners to host meeting and event planners for the Annual Incentiveworks show. This partnership is hosting over 30 Canadian planners that will enjoy a special side of IncentiveWorks including the educational component as well as the trade show from August 25-26. With personal site tours of unique venues, VIP access to various industry networking events throughout the week and participation in the SITE Golf Tournament, they will experience our destination and the hospitality of the people that will welcome them for their next meeting in Toronto!

Industry Cottage Party in Toronto!
MPI Foundation Canada is hosting what promises to be a fun-filled evening at the Opening Celebration Party of IncentiveWorks 2009. Join industry colleagues on Monday, August 24, 6:30-10:30 p.m. at The Atrium at Andrew Richard Designs, 571 Adelaide Street East. Further details about the event and silent auction can be found here.

Are You Ready For Some Football?
On September 3, TT will host 15 high-value association clients in a suite at Chicago's Soldier Field for a pre-season NFL game between the Chicago Bears and Cleveland Browns. These intimate and informal in-market events are proving very successful in developing and strengthening client relationships and continuing to deliver new opportunities for Toronto.

Live Canada
On September 9 (yes, 09/09/09), the Canadian Tourism Commission will host the LIVE CANADA event in major urban centres around the United States and Western Europe to promote Canada as an exciting travel destination. Tourism Toronto, as well as key members, will be on hand in London, England; New York, NY; Washington, DC; Chicago, IL; Minneapolis, MN; Dallas, TX; and San Francisco, CA to mix and mingle with significant association and corporate clients in a new and unique event format so secret even we donít know what it will be! Keep a lookout for more news about this exciting new endeavour.

Upcoming Meetings & Conventions (1,000+ Delegates)

Dates Meeting/Group Name Attendees
Aug 15-18 ASAE and the Center for Association Leadership 4,300
Aug 24-28 Rogers Communications Inc. - IncentiveWorks 2,000
Aug 26-31 Ontario Volleyball Association 2,000
Aug 30-Sep 8 American Political Science Association 6,000
Sep 3-8 Network of Indian Professionals 1,000
Sep 9-14 Reed Life Sciences 2,000
Sep 9-14 Photo Marketing Association International 2,000


MEMBER FOCUS
Request for Volunteers
ASAE & The Center for Association Leadership's Annual Meeting & Exposition is taking place in Toronto August 15-18, 2009.This is a singular opportunity to showcase Toronto's hospitality to an influential group of association professionals. We'd love to have you help us! Airport greeters are especially needed. See here for details.

The Tourism Toronto Industry Relations Committee is looking for five additional volunteers to begin their service in September 2009. More details are here.

Welcome Tourism Toronto's Newest Members
Meetings Services
Bowers & Co. Event Management

Restaurants
Joso's Restaurant

Tourism Toronto: Toronto Convention & Visitors Association
UPCOMING
EVENTS ACROSS
THE REGION
Opening Aug 1
Tundra Trek
Toronto Zoo

Aug 14-16 &
Aug 21-23

Unionville Jazz Festival
Main Street, Unionville

Aug 14-16
Markham Jazz Festival
Main Street, Markham

Aug 15-23
Rogers Cup Tennis
Rexall Centre

Aug 15
Wizard Academy
Casa Loma

Aug 21-23
TD Canada Trust Festival of South Asia
Gerrard Street East

Aug 21-Sep 7
Canadian National Exhibition
Exhibition Place

Aug 27-30
Scotiabank Buskerfest
St. Lawrence Market district

Sep 10-19
Toronto International Film Festival
Various theatres

Sep 24-Oct 4
Small World Music Festival
Various venues

For a complete listing of events please go to our online events calendar.

WHAT THEY'RE
SAYING
"When I'm asked to go to the fairgrounds to taste a couple of new menu additions, I'm happy to go. But several of my colleagues are excited. That childhood connection to the Ex, the rides, the food, is still in their hearts."

— From The Toronto Star, August 2008
MEMBER
TOOLKIT
EVENT CALENDAR

UPDATE YOUR LISTING

TOURISM TORONTO 2008 ANNUAL REPORT
TORONTO
INSIDER
Did you know? Commonly incorrectly referred to as "the Princess Gate" or "the Prince's Gate," the Princes' Gate on the CNE grounds, was named after two princes, brothers Edward VIII and George VI, in 1927.
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Tourism Toronto is the sales and marketing organization for Greater Toronto's diverse and compelling tourism experiences, representing 1,200 member businesses. Visit us at www.SeeTorontoNow.com.

Tourism Toronto is located at 207 Queens Quay West, Toronto, Ontario, M5J 1A7.