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TOURISM NOW

Photo: Toronto Blue Jays - Ontario Tourism


IN THIS ISSUE - HIGHLIGHTS

  • Live radio to Mexico City
  • Sales mission to India
  • Call for meeting facilities to update info

TOURISM SNAPSHOT
The momentum with which Toronto hotels finished 2010 has continued into 2011. As can be seen in the chart below, through the first two months of the year, the city's hotels have experienced slight increases in occupancy, average daily rates, and revenue per available room, compared to the same period in 2010.

Toronto Hotel Data Through February

Toronto Hotel Data Through February
Source: Smith Travel Research


HIGHLIGHTS
HuffPo eats its way around Toronto
As a result of a freelance journalist's visit to Toronto and Tourism Toronto's tremendous partner support, the Huffington Post ran Eating My Heart Out in Toronto for its over 12 million unique visitors a month. More articles from this journalist are expected in the coming months.

Toronto adds to the rarefied air
TT participated as a sponsor in the American Society for Association Executives (ASAE) annual Great Ideas Conference in Colorado Springs, and this year was especially significant for Toronto as we joined the Canadian Tourism Commission in bringing Professor Jennifer Riel from the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Business to lead a “deep dive” session on integrative thinking. This strategic support of industry initiatives allows us to maintain our position as a forward thinking solution provider to our clients.

It was then time for more mountain air from March 17-20 as more members of Team Toronto headed to Denver, CO to exhibit at the annual Meetings Industry Council of Colorado Tradeshow and Conference. This event regularly draws more than 300 meeting planners from Colorado and the surrounding states and represents an important tactical piece in our strategy to further develop key secondary markets like Denver. The team also conducted two days of targeted sales calls and found the market to be cautious in their outlook but open to the idea of bringing a future conference to Toronto.

Media missions
TT's Media Relations team was out stirring up interest in Toronto in important Canadian markets. Montréal was the first stop, with 12 meetings with journalists from daily newspapers, lifestyle, food and LGBT publications. Then the Travel Media Association of Canada's Annual General Meeting in Ottawa provided plenty of networking opportunities with travel media from across Canada as well as scheduled appointments with 15 journalists at a speed-dating style session.

Diamonds are a sellers' best friend
Toronto sparkled in Montreal on March 24 as the Canadian Corporate Sales team and 20+ hospitality partners hosted 60 meeting planners for an evening of networking at Birks Café by Europea in downtown Montreal. This was an excellent opportunity to thank key clients for the business they have put in Toronto over the years, as well as build the pipeline for future business from this lucrative market.

Toronto was live-to-air in Mexico City
TT's Media Relations welcomed ABC Radio from Mexico City March 18-22. The hosts of the show Perspectiva Radio were in town enjoying the destination including attractions, restaurants, museums and more. They broadcast the one-hour radio show live back to Mexico City on March 19 from their host hotel with a line-up of local guests who were interviewed on the show. One of the show's hosts will also publish travel articles on Toronto as a result of this visit in Diario Imagen, Diario de Chiapas, Contexto de Durango, Expresion, Opinion and Diario Vision.

NHL sets up sales opportunity
The Leafs may not have been on fire but the TT Sports Sales team was as a group of sports segment members helped host a networking event at a Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Tampa Bay Lightning game on March 14. These clients are movers and shakers from the Ontario Provincial Sports Organizations who are in a position to select the Greater Toronto Region to host a variety of future sporting competitions.

Leveraging promotional opportunities in China
The tourism authority for Qingdao, China (famous for their excellent beer, Tsingtao) has approached Tourism Toronto to develop a mutual tourism promotional effort. The two destinations are exploring how best to share media relations, marketing and industry expertise, with an aim to drawing more visitors from each country. Qingdao is a coastal city that was the host of the sailing competition during the Beijing Olympics and receives 44 million visitors a year.

Indian sales mission
TT's International Leisure team attended the Canadian Tourism Commission-sponsored India Showcase in South Goa, March 14-18, along with 60 Canadian suppliers and DMOs. During the showcase TT had appointments with over 90 tour operators, promoting Toronto as the urban gateway to Canada for Indian travellers. The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) events coming to Toronto June 23-25, have also provided a platform and two of India's premier tour operators won packages to visit Toronto during IIFA.

WHAT'S NEXT
AGM
Your e-vite to Tourism Toronto's Annual General Meeting will be coming to your inbox in the next few days, so please watch for it and register. The meeting is on May 31 at 3:00 at the Air Canada Centre and a networking session follows at the Real Sports Bar & Grill, which is right next door to the ACC. Please note that the Greater Toronto Hotel Association is holding its AGM just prior to TT's.

Sports team on the run
It will be an extremely high-paced April for the TT Sports Sales team with three separate sport-related tradeshow/conferences providing opportunities for business development for the Greater Toronto Region.
  • Sportaccord from April 3-9 in London, England sees over 1,500 sport organization executives meeting, networking and learning
  • North American Sport Commissions draws over 60 U.S.-based sport organizations and 450 delegates to Greensboro, N.C. from April 11-14
  • Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance is where 40 sport organizations and 300 delegates meet from April 26-29 in Ottawa
Watch for the team's updates in coming issues.

Lobbying for business in D.C.
The U.S. sales team will have no time for blossom gazing when in Washington for a series of big events. First, TT hosts a table of partners and key clients on April 27 at the PCMA Education Foundation Annual Recognition Dinner. April 28 is ASAE's Springtime EXPO, the D.C. area's single largest gathering of meeting industry power players for the year, where Toronto is a standout presence on the tradeshow floor due to our high-style booth design. Finally on April 29, Team Toronto will wrap up the week with 18 holes of focused client face time during the annual ASAE D.C. Invitational golf tournament. These intensive client opportunities allow us to further strengthen our relationships with association stakeholders.

Upcoming Meetings & Conventions (600+ Delegates)

Dates Meeting/Group Name Attendees
Mar 31-Apr 3 Malton Mavericks Youth Basketball Club - U12 2,000
Apr 5-9 UPCEA 96th Annual Conference 650
Apr 14-17 Malton Mavericks Youth Basketball Club – U13

2,000

Apr 27-May 1 National Events/Masters of Music 2011

800

Apr 28-30 Ontario Dental Association

8,500

Apr 28-May 1 National Cancer Institute of Canada

880


MEMBER FOCUS
Calling all accommodations and meeting facilities
Help make it easier for meeting planners and corporate sellers to find information about your meeting space by updating the ‘Amenities' tab in your Member Record. Fill in the meeting space dimensions and amenities and also add a picture and description so planners know what you have to offer. They can't book a venue if they don't know anything about it! You will need your password to log into your member record so if you have forgotten it please contact Denise Belgrove in Member Care.

Sustainability success stories
In honour of Earth Day on April 22, we are showcasing some of our community's “green” efforts. We'd love to share your sustainability success stories too, so if you have one to tell, please e-mail Cathy Riches at criches@torcvb.com.

Evergreen Brick Works
Since September 2010, Evergreen and a community of like-minded organizations have made their home in this intellectual and educational nexus of the Evergreen Brick Works campus. The Centre for Green Cities is a meeting place where innovators, educators and leaders in social and environmental thought come together to bring about positive change.

Constructed with the highest standards of green design, this building will be rated LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum, among a small handful of LEED Platinum buildings in Canada and the only one designated for a heritage site. The building will include a green roof, two classrooms, a large kitchen and a series of event and meeting spaces.

A new addition to its site: scheduled to open in Late Spring, the Belong Café at the Brick Works run by Chef Long will offer delicious meals prepared with fresh local ingredients for visitors looking to relax in the natural setting at Evergreen Brick Works as well as for those looking for fresh meals for pick-up and go. Check out the link below for more information about Belong and Evergreen Brick Works: http://www.thestar.com/living/food/article/938723--cafe-belong-could-be-a-temple-for-locavores

Welcome New Members

Accommodations
Comfort Inn Meadowvale

Hilton Garden Inn Toronto Airport

Pantages Hotel Toronto Centre

Attractions
Wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake

Meeting Facilities
Airship 37

Meeting Services
Party Impressions

Restaurants
Fallsview Restaurant

Tourism Toronto: Toronto Convention & Visitors Association
UPCOMING
EVENTS ACROSS
THE REGION
  Apr 1
Home opener – Toronto Blue Jays
Rogers Centre

Apr 5
Tower of Power
Living Arts Centre

Apr 5
GE Chefs Series: Food for Thought

Apr 7-17
Performance Spring Festival
Factory Theatre

Apr 9-10
Spring Motorcycle Show

Apr 9
Bruce Cockburn
Massey Hall

Opens Apr 13
The Roaring 20s: Heels, Hemlines and High Spirits
Bata Shoe Museum

Apr 13-16
Children & A Few Minutes of Lock - Louise Lecavalier
Fleck Dance Theatre

To April 15
Sandra Shamas, Wit's End III
Wintergarden Theatre

To Apr 19
Alice in Wonderland
Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People

To May 15
Life as a Legend: Marilyn Monroe
McMichael Canadian Art Collection

May 12-22
LULAWORLD 2011: The New Canadian Songbook
LULA Lounge


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

WHAT THEY'RE
SAYING
"I love the city. It's the best kept secret in North America, from the theatres to restaurants. Some of the best food I've ever had I've had in this city. Golf courses, the whole works."

— Cito Gaston, former manager of the Toronto Blue Jays
MEMBER
TOOLKIT
EVENT CALENDAR

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TORONTO
INSIDER
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We want to hear your feedback on this newsletter. Please contact Cathy Riches via newsletter@torcvb.com with
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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.