• Visit Seattle Reflects on Record-Breaking Tourism in 2018

     
    POSTED May 13, 2019
     
  • Visit Seattle Reflects on Record-Breaking Tourism in 2018

     
    POSTED May 13, 2019
     
  • Visit Seattle Reflects on Record-Breaking Tourism in 2018

     
    POSTED May 13, 2019
     
  • Visit Seattle Reflects on Record-Breaking Tourism in 2018

     
    POSTED May 13, 2019
     
  • Visit Seattle Reflects on Record-Breaking Tourism in 2018

     
    POSTED May 13, 2019
     

Visit Seattle experienced record-breaking tourism in 2018, with downtown Seattle hotel occupancies above 80 percent despite a 2,934-room increase with new hotel openings in 2018 and 2019. Meetings and conventions bookings peaked at 691,163 total room nights booked in 2018.

The Washington State Convention Center had a record year in business, as did Visit Seattle, Seattle-Tacoma (Sea-Tac) International Airport and Norwegian Cruise Line, Seattle's Alaskan cruise business. Sea-Tac had a record-breaking passenger volume in 2018, with a 6.2 percent increase from the 49.8 million passengers in 2017. Additionally, Sea-Tac traffic grew 5.8 percent with service from 29 international destinations, making it the eighth busiest airport in the United States.

Some of Seattle's busiest events in 2018 included Taste Washington, Space Needle's "Spacelift," the opening of the Nordic Museum, Pearl Jam and the 2018 James Beard Awards and Nominations.

"Seattle is a vibrant and distinctive waterfront city with new developments breaking ground frequently," says Tom Norwalk, president and CEO of Visit Seattle. "It offers a compact, walkable and highly accessible downtown featuring an outstanding brand mix of world-class hotels, an award-winning culinary scene, flagship retail shopping, and vibrant arts and cultural institutions, all within steps of the Washington State Convention Center and its upcoming addition, Summit, opening in 2022."

Norwalk says Seattle's increase in tourism has had positive effects on the meetings and events industry, as it has encouraged growth in hotel inventory, award-winning restaurants, new cultural institutions and attractions, and more. 

Based on the patterns of past years, Norwalk says Visit Seattle has been able to project how many meetings attendees will come to Seattle in future years. In 2019, it's projected that Seattle will see 475,000 meetings attendees, which is projected to increase to 620,000 by 2025.

"Seattle is one of the few cities that can offer the complete package of a major convention facility with hotels all located in the heart of a vibrant downtown," Norwalk says. "There is a wide variety of full-service and affordable hotel accommodation options." By the end of 2019, Norwalk says downtown Seattle will have 13,681 rooms, all within 13 blocks of the Washington State Convention Center.

Benchmark is adding Washington's Skamania Lodge to its portfolio of resorts and hotels.

 

Aventri, a leader in events management software (EMS), recently released ‘The Top 100 Meeting and Event Venues in the United States’ for 2019. The company took the ten top-rated meeting and event cities in the United States and picked the top ten venues in each area, compiling a list of 100 highly-regarded spaces. 

The guide identifies the two most valuable factors in attendee satisfaction as venue location and activities in the host city, followed by capacity, uniqueness and proximity to local attractions.

 

The Vancouver Convention Centre (VCC) is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, and it definitely has a lot to celebrate. Since adding its west building, which tripled the facility's capacity, the VCC has welcomed more than 9 million guests from around the world and generated more than $2.4 billion in direct spending for British Columbia.