Biweekly Update: June 15, 2018

Greetings and happy Friday.

I am writing to you from Malmö, Sweden, the site for European Cities Marketing’s (ECM) Annual Meeting. Over 175 CEOs and senior level managers from cities throughout Europe are here for the annual gathering. Yesterday, I had the chance to address the delegation to talk about many initiatives and global issues that face our industry. We also had the chance to demo the European Model of the Event Impact Calculator (EIC) presented in partnership with ECM. We are thrilled with the reception the EIC is receiving in Europe from many large market destinations in Europe. You may read more about the partnership here. Thanks to the continued support and leadership of Destinations International Board member Ignasi de Delàs, Dieter Hardt-Stremayr and Flavie Baudot.

We all realize the critical importance of tracking accurate data and with our partners at Tourism Economics, Destinations International has the tools to help validate your destination organization and the training to make sure you are using the tools correctly.

The EIC has become the industry’s best tool for standardized reporting for meeting, festivals and sports in North America. And now, with the partnership with ECM, we have extended this tool to the European market.

We invite you to join in on one of our EIC and ORDA demos during our Annual Convention in Anaheim, CA. Additionally, there are monthly user sessions offered by Destinations International and Tourism Economics if you would like further training.

Earlier this year, we introduced the Overnight Room Demand Analyzer (ORDA), which is the perfect complement to EIC, providing more complete and accurate data to defend the total room nights a group uses in a destination by accruing a zip code file from the planner.

Kate Skidmore and Andreas Weissenborn had the opportunity to present a session on how to measure event data and impact with EIC and ORDA at the 2018 Tempest Tourism Academy this week in Louisville, Kentucky. Thanks to Alex Heimann, Gregg Shapiro, Jake Buganski, Mark Lynch and the entire Tempest team for the invitation to present and for their continued partnership and support of Destinations International.

For more information on how these tools can better serve you or to schedule a training, please contact Elaine Rosquist at [email protected].

Our team is getting excited about the Annual Convention coming up next month in Anaheim, CA. Registration is still open. You may click here to register. With over 50 sessions occurring at the convention, be sure to join us for our inspirational keynote speakers:

  • Tyler Florence and Caroline Beteta of Visit California: More than 500 people gathered in a scenic vineyard along the Napa-Sonoma County line to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal together and raise funds for wildfire relief. First responders, chefs, winemakers, tourism officials and many others gave time, energy and money to help those impacted by the October blazes. Join Tyler Florence and Caroline Beteta to hear how CVBs came together to inspire their communities and help them recover.
  • Brad Dean, Chief Executive Officer of Puerto Rico Destination Marketing Organization and Cathy Tull, Chief Marketing Officer of Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority: Destinations are facing challenges like never before - whether it's natural disasters or manmade chaos, how do you respond? Come hear leaders from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and the Puerto Rico Destination Marketing Organization share their first-hand experiences with the unimaginable. You won't want to miss their inspiring stories of recovery and community.
  • Global All-Stars: World Leading Insights, Inspiration and Ideas: Global All Stars 2018 brings together three exciting speakers and three critical trends that are reshaping destinations and travel. Cassidy Blackwell will showcase how Airbnb creates, curates and surfaces remarkable stories about destinations from across the globe. Alan Boniface, a world leading urban architect, covers the latest trends and thinking on “Place Making.” Brian Healey, previously with Amazon’s Alexa and now with Lola, will illustrate the power and potential of Artificial Intelligence. Don't miss this essential panel with remarkable insights, inspiration and ideas for your destination.

On Tuesday, July 10, we will celebrate "Foundation Day" with fun and easy ways to support the education, research, advocacy and leadership development initiatives that are made possible by the Foundation. Events include:

  • Off-site Learning Labs for experiential learning
    Cultivating Destination Sports Culture
    Curating Destination Conservation
    Crafting Destination Community
  • The Foundation Golf Tournament at Monarch Links: Known as one of the premiere golf courses in the country, join us for a fantastic fundraiser at Monarch Beach Golf Links to benefit the Destinations International Foundation. You may register here.
  • Rendezvous, a premiere networking reception hosted by MPI at City National Grove, is a ticketed event with proceeds benefiting Foundation initiatives. You may purchase your ticket here.

This week we were very excited to announce our 2018 Hall of Fame inductees. You may read the press release here. This year’s inductees include:

  • Anja Loetscher, Retired; Former Director, Geneva Tourism & Conventions Foundation
  • Marian Holt McLain, Retired; Former President & CEO, San Jose CVB
  • William (Bill) Peeper, Retired; Former President & CEO, Orlando CVB
  • Deborah Sexton, Former President & CEO, PCMA

Congratulations to this very deserving list who have made a lasting impact on our industry. We look forward to recognizing and celebrating these individuals at our Annual Convention.

We also look forward to recognizing Caroline Beteta with Visit California as this year’s Destination Organization Leadership Award recipient. This annual award recognizes outstanding individuals who, through their work and achievements, have made a major contribution to our industry and a significant impact in the communities they serve. Caroline serves as President & CEO of Visit California and simultaneously serves as the Director of Tourism in California’s Governor’s Office of Business & Economic Development (GO-Biz). Beteta is responsible for implementing Visit California’s $126 million global marketing program and serves as the lead spokesperson for California’s $132.4 billion travel industry. She has shepherded the growth of Visit California into a global marketing franchise delivering millions of visitors and billions of dollars of economic growth to the state every year.

We are pleased to announce the 2018-2019 Destinations International Foundation Board of Trustees slate. 

Destinations International Foundation Slate (3 Year Terms):

  • Linda K. Johns, Visit Eau Claire
  • John Lambeth, Civitas
  • Joe Marinelli, Visit Savannah
  • Milton Segarra, Visit Mississippi Gulf Coast
  • Gregg Shapiro, Tempest
  • Ellie Westman Chin, Williamson Co. CVB

Destinations International Foundation 2018-2019 Officers Slate:

  • Jason Fulvi, Visit Pittsburgh- Chair
  • John Groh, Rockford Area CVB- Chair Elect
  • John Lambeth, Civitas- Secretary-Treasurer
  • Stephanie Pace Brown, Explore Asheville – Immediate Past Chair
  • John Percy, Destination Niagara USA- At-large Officer

Congratulations to Caleb Miles on his retirement from the Convention & Visitors Bureau of Pinehurst, Southern Pines, Aberdeen Area.

Amanda Hof with Visit Howard County has been in touch with our team about how to help Ellicott City after the city’s devastating flooding. Ellicott City has a long history of strength, growth and resilience. Donations, moral support and positive thoughts can be used immediately. Information on the recovery process and ways to help can be found here.

Looking forward to seeing all of you in Anaheim!

Best wishes for a safe and enjoyable weekend.


Don Welsh signature

Don Welsh
President & CEO
Destinations International