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Photo: Toronto International Boat Show:


  • New major convention win
  • TT has a new Facebook page
  • Media coverage in Europe, England, New York and the Web
  • We're off to PCMA

Earlier in 2009, Tourism Toronto, in partnership with Ryerson University and the GTAA, started conducting an ongoing visitor survey at Pearson Airport and several highway stops outside of the GTA.

Results for the third quarter (July-Sept) of 2009 have been compiled. Among more than 600 people surveyed there are some interesting differences between first time and repeat pleasure visitors in terms of the neighbourhoods they visit during their trip, with first timers appearing more active than repeat visitors. Overall, the diversity and variety of visitor options remain a major draw for the GTA.
  Pleasure Visitors (%)
  Total First Time Repeat
Yonge/Dundas 56.1 66.7 45.0
Waterfront/Harbourfront 53.3 67.6 45.0
Chinatown 28.8 43.7 20.3
Queen West 24.1 28.8 21.6
Entertainment District 18.0 22.1 15.7
University of Toronto area 17.7 29.7 11.1
Yorkville/Bloor 16.1 21.2 13.4
St. Lawrence/Old Town 15.1 23.4 10.5
Mississauga 14.6 8.6 18.0
Toronto Islands 13.5 19.8 10.0
Distillery District 12.2 17.6 9.0
Scarborough 12.2 7.7 14.7
Little Italy 11.2 15.3 9.0
Any other Downtown mention 10.6 10.4 10.5
Kensington Market 10.4 17.1 6.7

Ending the Year With a Win
In December, Tourism Toronto secured another major city-wide meeting, this one the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), who will meet in Toronto in October 2016 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre for its first-ever meeting outside the U.S. The meeting brings 6,000 delegates to Toronto and a total of 16,500 hotel room nights. This win is a direct result of all the hard work that went into hosting ASAE this past summer, as AHIMA staff who attended ASAE experienced firsthand the strong partnerships that exist within our community, giving them confidence in presenting Toronto to the Board of Directors to host 2016. With this win, Tourism Toronto's sales team finished the year with 12 city-wide wins totalling nearly 200,000 future room nights.

Become a Fan of Tourism Toronto
Tourism Toronto has recently started a "fan page" on Facebook that is oriented to our members and others who are interested in issues and events affecting tourism in Toronto. If you use Facebook and would like to receive our occasional updates and links with useful news and information, click here.

In addition, we wish to remind you that TT has also been active for some months on Facebook and Twitter with visitor-oriented accounts that members are welcome to follow.

Skating Into American Hearts
As a result of TT's media relations efforts, Toronto's picturesque Natrel Rink at Harbourfront Centre was highlighted in AAA Mid-Atlantic's World Online site in a round-up of ice rinks that are truly a treat in the winter. AAA World Online is a lifestyle-focused online magazine written for AAA members and receives 310,000 monthly unique visitors.

Germany Gets a Glimpse Under Toronto
After the Media Relations team hosted a German press trip in June, coverage has started to mount up. Mittelbeyerische Zeitung ran an article online and in print comparing Toronto’s above and below ground life. The print edition has a daily circulation of 135,000 and the article an equivalent advertising value of $27,000.

Traveller's World magazine based in Germany mentioned that Toronto is a hotspot for Christmas shopping that rivals New York. Traveller's World is a premium travel magazine with a circulation of 50,000.

NYC Foodies Feast on TO
Tourism Toronto welcomed the Dining Editor from Time Out New York earlier this fall on a culinary tour of Toronto which resulted in Toronto is for Foodies. Time Out New York is aimed at active people interested in where to go and what to do in New York City as well as other culinary destinations and receives over 90,000 unique visitors monthly.

Tackling Client Relations
Two recent NFL games provided opportunities to relate to potential clients in a fun and intimate setting. On December 13, TT hosted 15 high value association clients in a suite at Soldier Field in Chicago for the lakefront edition of the Bears/Packers rivalry. While the on-field battle didn't go the home team's way, the in-suite networking was a big success as past and prospective clients connected with members of the Toronto community and shared their thoughts on what has made Toronto work in the past and how future opportunities might develop.

Then on December 27, a large group of association clients came to a pre-game meal in the Hall of Fame tents before taking in the Redskins/Cowboys clash. Each year this coveted event hosted by Tourism Toronto brings out top-notch prospective clients for a chance to cheer their team on the field. Relationships developed and strengthened in these informal settings continue to prove invaluable in our mission to deliver opportunities for business to the Toronto community.

Top Travel Blogger Turns Sights on Toronto
The first results have emerged from Media Relations hosting a writer from on a press tour in November. Everett Potter's travel blog has been named one of the "50 Travel Blogs I Can't Live Without" by Chris Elliott, a leading travel expert ( and has also received praise from The Wall Street Journal. offers advice for upscale travellers looking for an insider's take on hotels, resorts and destinations. More results are expected to roll in over the next few months.

France Likes Our Style
IDEAT, a prominent art and design magazine in France ran a 6-page article in its December issue, as a result of a visit here co-hosted by TT, OTMP and CTC. The article highlights Toronto's recent design boom and has an equivalent advertising value of $114,000.

Year-End Events Bode Well for the New Year
On December 15, TT again exhibited at the Association Forum Holiday Showcase at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago. This annual event marks the end of the Chicago-area meetings industry year and regularly draws more than 2,000 qualified buyers for the morning education sessions and afternoon tradeshow. Toronto's very visible presence in the Canada Aisle, coordinated by the CTC, provides a solid platform from which our members can strengthen existing relationships and meet a number of new industry players.

On the same date, TT participated in the annual CVBREP's client appreciation reception in Washington, D.C. Toronto, along with other CVBs in the D.C. area, hosted more than 300 clients who enjoyed great food, prizes and even had a surprise visit from some faux White House party crashers! This is the marquee event for CVBREPs in the D.C. area and provides a great year-end opportunity to maintain and strengthen relationships heading into the New Year.

A High Point for Sports Events Planning
Tourism Toronto and the Toronto Sports Council will team up again early in 2010 to host the 4th Annual Toronto Sports Summit. Members should watch for a business opportunity inviting them to join TT's Sports team at this grand event. Space will be limited and based on a first come, first served basis. More details in regards to dates, times and location will be available at the end of January.

Deep in the Heart of Texas
From January 8-14, Team Toronto will be in full force at the PCMA Annual Meeting in Dallas. With a participating contingent more than 30 strong, Toronto will make a major impact at this event that draws over 1,000 association meeting planners from across the continent. TT will have a high profile as we sponsor the Opening General Session speaker Ambassador Nancy Brinker; participate side-by-side with meeting professionals in the education sessions; and host select clients in the uber-chic Imaginarium. All of our activities at this client-rich event are geared toward raising Toronto's appeal within the association industry and developing future business opportunities for our community at home.

Upcoming Meetings & Conventions (500+ Delegates)

Dates Meeting/Group Name Attendees
Jan 5-8 Softchoice - Launch 2010 800
Jan 12-14 Canadian Institutes of Health Research 500
Jan 13-18 NA Intl Motorcycle Show 700
Jan 13-17 Canadian Association of Pharmacy Students & Interns 900
Jan 15-23 Nestle Canada - National Sales Meeting 850
Jan 15-24 International Ticketing Association - Annual Conference 1,500

One of TT's Own Named to Top Spot at PCMA
Tara Gordon, Vice President, Meetings, Conventions & Incentive Travel at Tourism Toronto recently landed the plum post of President of PCMA Canada East Chapter for 2010. Tara has been a member of the PCMA Canada East Chapter board of directors for the past five years. She is also very active at the PCMA national level having recently served on the 2009 Nominating Committee and Annual Meeting Program Committee.

New Pan Am Board Chair Named
Former Four Seasons Hotels executive, Roger Garland, has been named as the Chair of the 12-person board in charge of the Pan Am Games set to be held in Toronto in 2015.

Peller Chef Invited to Prestigious Culinary Event
Peller Estates Winery Chef Jason Parsons will be showcasing his wine country culinary style at a James Beard Dinner in New York City on January 14. Each year, an exclusive group of culinary professionals is invited to cook at this prestigious dinner. Chef Parsons' six-course menu is inspired by the many flavours and ingredients found in Canada and is paired with the wines of Peller Estates.

CSAE Honours National Speakers Bureau
The National Speakers Bureau and V.P. Theresa Beenken were presented with the 2009 Griner Award by the Canadian Society of Association Executives (CSAE) at the organization's national conference last month. The Griner Award recognizes the significant contribution business members make to CSAE and association management.

Congratulations to all!

Canada-e-Connect is on the Horizon
If you hurry, you can still register for Canada-e-Connect: Canadian Tourism's Online Strategy Conference. It runs from January 27-29 in Montreal, and has a packed program of social networking and marketing strategy presentations delivered by a range of experts. Take advantage of the special rates for Tourism Toronto members! Please use registration code CEC8643.


This month's hidden gem from Les Clef's d'Or is by:
Amy Collier
Chef Concierge
155 Cumberland Street
Professional Affiliate, Les Clefs d'Or Canada

Hidden Gem - Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
If you walk quickly you may miss the building on the corner of John and Front Street. To the outsider it blends in quite well with its surroundings, with its white outer shell walls, "waterfall like" windows and stripes of red threaded throughout the building like a huge Christmas present. The building is a homage to Canadian broadcasting, but as they say, "It's what's inside that counts."

The main headquarters for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, known affectionately to Canadians as the CBC, is located at 250 Front Street West. Not only is it a creative workplace where journalists, actors, designers and technicians produce radio and television programming, but there are many facets to this multipurpose centre that are open to the public.

The most striking is the Barbara Frum Atrium which was named in honour of one of Canada's most celebrated journalists. This impressive space soars 10 storeys high and is often used for special broadcasts and events.

The Glenn Gould Studio is an intimate concert hall and recording studio where many iconic Canadian artists have performed. It seats 341 comfortably, theatre style, and is also ideal for meetings and hosting events.

The CBC Museum houses 4,000 physical artifacts of the national broadcaster's heritage, dating back over 70 years of Canadian broadcasting. Some of the collections include the Marconi Mark II TV camera and microphones that were used in the 60s and 70s. This is a popular spot for tours by teachers and their students, and the best part of the museum is that admission is free!

CBC radio and television production is the main component of the CBC building. This is where the public has the opportunity to participate in live tapings of shows like The Rick Mercer Report and Steven and Chris.

It is here where television magic happens. And on this particular Thursday afternoon, when I attended, it is where one can be a part of the live audience and taping of The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos. The late night talk show is about current events that cover everything from politics, pop culture, the environment, human rights, entertainment and sports and has won six Gemini Awards.

I cannot describe how enthralled I was to attend my first live taping of The Hour. The fact that Morgan Freeman was one of the guests being interviewed only fuelled my excitement. It is really cool to be a part of a taping of a show and then watch it on your television later on. But more importantly I uncovered a gem in Toronto that I had known nothing about. Rest assured that I will be back to visit the CBC building very soon. Now if I could only get someone to take a picture of me and the sculpture of Glenn Gould on the bench it would be perfect!

For further information on CBC and their live shows go to

Your Member Care team wishes you a Happy New Year and we look forward to engaging you with your member services in the coming year!

New Member Workshop Coming in 2010
Learn the most effective ways to connect with fellow members and expand your business opportunities by sharing ideas and skills and partnering on new ventures. Watch for details about the workshop in 2010.

Welcome Tourism Toronto's Newest Members

Industry Supplier
L Squared Networks

Meeting Facilities
The Rostie Group

Meeting Services
Accenta Display Corporation

Tourism Toronto: Toronto Convention & Visitors Association
  Nov 18-May 30
Fashionably Wrapped
Textile Museum

Dec 10-Mar 7
Nothing to Declare: Current Sculpture from Canada
Power Plant Art Gallery

Jan 8-10
Canada's Bridal Show
Metro Toronto Convention Centre

Jan 9-17
Toronto International Boat Show
Direct Energy Centre

Jan 10
Sing & Play - Family Sunday

Jan 13
Habanot Nechama
Al Green Theatre

Jan 14-21
Canada's Top Ten 2009 (film festival)
TIFF Cinematheque

Jan 16
Hershey Centre

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

"Toronto can be accessed by boat year-round, even during the frigid months of winter, because of Lake Ontario, which has only frozen over twice in recorded history. So don't let the waning of summer make this destination seem like one that should wait until the next boating season."

— from Great Lakes Boating, October 2009




Did you know? Records show that the first time sailing vessels of any magnitude, the Caldwell and the Buffalo, sailed to Toronto was in 1793.
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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

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