Growth in hotel occupancy continues (for the past 43 months), with the highest June ever.  


June 2013

June 2013

% Change





June 2013

June 2012

% Change




The Bahia Mar Fort Lauderdale Beach – DoubleTree by Hilton provides an outstanding employment culture for 172 team members, plus on property jobs related to fishing charters, yacht industry brokers, yacht maintenance crew, recreational operations such us Sea Experience Dive Shop, Blue Foot Pirate Kids tours, Tropical Sailing Catamaran Tours, Jungle Queen excursion and other small operators.

SAVE THE DATE: Destination Marketing Plan Presentation and FRLA Trade Show
Mark your calendars for Thursday, October 24 at 12pm for the 2014 Greater Fort Lauderdale Marketing Plan Presentation and Luncheon at the Broward County Convention Center. See what's on the horizon for tourism sales, convention sales, multicultural business, film & entertainment, public relations and advertising as we gear up for the year ahead. FRLA’s annual trade show kicks it off at 11am with service providers, venues and cultural groups exhibiting.


Get ready to relax during the sixth annual Lauderdale Spa Chic, September 1-30, where 15 top spas offer treatments for $99 (up to 50% savings): The Atlantic Resort & Spa; Bonaventure Resort & Spa; Diamante Day Spa; Embassy Suites Deerfield Beach Resort & Spa; Harbor Beach Marriott Resort; Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort; Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six; Lago Mar Resort and Club; Le Spot European Day Spa; Residence Inn by Marriott Oceanfront; Planet Massage; The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale; The W Fort Lauderdale; The Westin Beach Resort & Spa, Fort Lauderdale; and The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa. For details visit www.sunny.org/spachic.


Summer deals are in full swing. Visit http://sunny.org/Lauderdeals for the latest info on Vacation Like a VIP at Lauderdale Luxe hotels, Summer Savings 2-for-1 offers, Cruise and Play deals, special deals for Latin American visitors, Spa Chic, Florida Resident hotel deals and Viva Florida deals. If you need more 2-for-1 cards for your guests, contact Frank fpadin@broward.org to place an order.


Enjoy three-course dinner menus for $35 October 1-November 7 at more than 35 top Broward restaurants. FORT LAUDERDALE: Amatsu Sushi & Sake at the Westin Beach Resort & Spa, Fort Lauderdale; The Capital Grille; Coco Asian Bistro & Bar; da Campo Osteria at the il Lugano; Dapur, Asian Tapas & Lounge; Dos Caminos at the Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel; 15th Street Fisheries; Grille 66 & Bar Restaurant at the Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six; Indigo Restaurant at the Riverside Hotel; Johnny V; Mai-Kai Restaurant and Show; The Melting Pot, Fort Lauderdale; Ocean 2000 at the Pelican Grand; Royal Pig Pub & Kitchen; Ruth's Chris Steakhouse; SAIA at B Ocean Fort Lauderdale; Sea Level at Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa; Shula's on the Beach at the Westin Beach Resort & Spa, Fort Lauderdale; Spazio; Steak 954 at the W Fort Lauderdale; Sunfish Grill; Thasos Greek Taverna; 3030 Ocean at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa; Via Luna at The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale; Wild Sea Oyster Bar & Grille at the Riverside Hotel  HOLLYWOOD:  Bongos Cuban Cafe; Rivals at The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA: Blue Moon Fish Co; SEA LIGHTHOUSE POINT: Le Bistro MIRAMAR: Elle's Restaurant  POMPANO BEACH: Cafe Maxx; McCoy's Restaurant at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach  WILTON MANORS: Tee Jay Thai Sushi  WESTON: Ireland's Steakhouse at the Bonaventure Resort & Spa. Visit www.sunny.org/dineout for details.

Get your taste buds ready for “Flavors of Fort Lauderdale,” November 14-17 a four-day celebration of the culinary lifestyle and casual elegance including a variety of events including Dine Around Fort Lauderdale, Late Night Flavors, Flavors After Dark and the Flavors Grand Tasting. Flavors features the finest culinary offerings from local and regional restaurants and chefs, as well as world-class wines and spirits, gourmet specialty foods and lifestyle experiences from diverse and exceptional partners. For more information, contact info@flavorsfortlauderdale.com or visit www.FlavorsofFortLauderdale.com.

The communications team welcomed several media during the month of July including Aspire Magazine from the UK for a tour of Lauderdale Luxe Collection, Hombre Magazine visited the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood, and Gay Times Magazine explored hotels, guesthouses, dining and nightlife in Wilton Manors and Fort Lauderdale. Also, the team assisted a blogger/vlogger visiting the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa for dinner and a tour of the area.

Coming up in August Peter Greenberg’s Travel Detective on PBS is filming in Greater Fort Lauderdale covering the yachting industry, watersports, Anne Kolb Nature Center, cricket at Central Broward Regional Park, the Everglades and more. The GFLCVB’s communications team is assisting B Ocean with a press fam of US-based travel media, hosting a day of snorkeling and lunch on the water for the group. Also in August, Cosmopolitan Latina will be visiting on a spa-themed press visit of Greater Fort Lauderdale to promote Lauderdale Spa Chic.

Groups meeting in August will generate more than $5.7 million to Broward County. Groups include:   
Aug 3-10: Florida Health Care Association 2013 Annual Conference (975 attendees)
Aug 9-16: American Nuclear Society Utility Working Conference 2013 (506 attendees)
Aug 12-17: Florida Assisted Living Affiliation 2013 (300 attendees)
Aug 29-Sept 3: Florida Marine Aquarium Society (1500 attendees)


In July, Fernando Harb and Josh Winston attended Global Travel Marketplace (GTM) at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa. GTM is an exclusive program, with a select one hundred top qualifying agents who participated in networking and trade show appointments with global travel suppliers and “Hello Sunny” boardroom presentations designed to create a collaborative and interactive environment. Click here to read a recent article in the Sun-Sentinel about CVB initiatives to reach this important audience..

Fernando and CVB UK/Ireland teams completed a trade and media sales mission in July, meeting with targeted trade and consumer-facing tour operators across the UK and Ireland, as well as consumer and trade media.

Total traffic for May 2013 was 1,916,670, up 2.5% over last year. Domestic traffic was up 2.8% and international traffic was up 1.2%. There are several new routes that will begin to have a positive effect on traffic, including JetBlue new service to Medellin, Colombia and San Jose, Costa Rica. In the 4th quarter, JetBlue plans to launch new service to Lima, Peru; Worchester, MA; and Port Au Prince, Haiti. In 2012, more than 241,000 Scandinavian travelers visited GFL. The GFLCVB in Scandinavia continues to work with Norwegian to launch two weekly flights from Copenhagen to FLL, two weekly flights from Stockholm and two weekly flights from Oslo in November and December 2013.

The Grand Alliance will be adding a direct ocean shipping service to Northern Europe from Port Everglades in August. Florida International Terminal (FIT) at Port Everglades is the new terminal operator and stevedore for the GAX (Gulf Atlantic Express) service, which is jointly operated by Hapag-Lloyd and its partners NYK Line and OOCL, and covers the trade between Northern Europe and the U.S. East Coast and Gulf areas.

Richard Gray attended the G360 Network Conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, making two presentations on LGBT Marketing in Greater Fort Lauderdale, one to government officials of the attending Central and South American governments and one to the general attendees. He was also interviewed by two TV stations and several media reporters on the importance of the gay traveler. Richard will be attending Gay Days Las Vegas in September, an LGBT tourism conference in Bogota, Columbia in October and World Travel Market in London in November.

Sports welcomes more than 6,500 athletes, spectators, coaches, and families to Greater Fort Lauderdale in August, attending events such as: Early Bird Hockey Tournament at the Saveology Ice Complex; International Champions Cup Soccer Tournament at Sun Life Stadium; and Bowling Tournament of the Americas at Strikers Bowling Center.

Congrats to Albert Tucker who received Lauderhill Regional Chamber of Commerce Dedicated Service to Our Community Award for his business development efforts. Albert Tucker, pictured here with the Governor General of Belize Sir Coleman Young, attended the Belize Travel & Trade Show. Last month, Albert attended meetings in Trinidad to lay groundwork for future partnerships with the Ministers of Culture and Tourism. In August, Albert and Angella Lopez will attend Progressive National Baptist Conference in Detroit Aug 6-9 in preparation for the 2014 Annual Conference in Fort Lauderdale. Albert will participate in the 20th Annual Black Enterprise Magazine Conference Aug 29–Sept 1. The American Tennis Association hosts its 96th Annual National Championships now through Aug 3: www.sunny.org/ata. Midtown Summerfest takes place Friday August 2 along newly renovated Sistrunk Blvd. Visit http://www.sistrunksummerfest.com for more info. And click here to read about future permanent home to American Tennis Association in Fort Lauderdale.


TV Series: Gym Rescue; Airport 24/7: Miami; La Voz Kids; Bubbles U Trailer  TV Commercials: FP&L; SpinBalls; Florida Center for Cosmetic Surgery; Florida Lottery; Carnival Cruise Lines; Orange Bowl Media Campaign  Featured Film: Jersey Shore Massacre; Deadly Confessions  Still Photography: Wal*Mart Catalog; Dr. Well Lifestyle  Telenovela: Marido En Alquiler; Santa Diabla; Los Secretos de Lucia   Documentaries: Port Everglades Tower Demolition; Hey Rookie/Denard Robinson  Other: Discovery Channel Canada-Daily Planet; El Factor X; Faith Expired; Illuminati Beatz.

The new Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa opens this month, with 219 rooms, five suites and a concierge level and lounge. Located in Pompano Beach, the hotel’s new McCoy’s Oceanfront restaurant will feature fresh local seafood and modern handcrafted cocktails. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. and its award-winning Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG) program announced the winners of the 2013 Member Favorite Resorts list with The Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa recognized for “Best Family Experience.” Congrats to Paula DaSilva (Hell's Kitchen Season 5 runner-up) who returns to 3030 Ocean at the Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa as the new executive chef. The Extended Stay America – Ft. Lauderdale recently unveiled their renovated 17th Street location.

Florida's tax-free weekend is August 2-4, 2013. Visit http://sunny.org/taxfree for info.


Versace's only Florida outlet location is now open as part of the new expansion of The Colonnade Outlets at Sawgrass Mills. Sawgrass Mills has also added several first-in-market retail additions with the opening of Under Armour Factory House, as well as GEOX, GANT, Tourneau, Men’s Wearhouse and New Balance. Other recent additions include Diane von Furstenberg, Robert Graham, Ippolita, Wolford, an expanded location from Armani Outlet and the permanent location from Gucci. The Galleria at Fort Lauderdale announces the addition of a first-in-area Michael Kors and Gymboree opening this fall. 

“The Ft Lauderdale webcam is so pretty.  I’ve had an icon on my desktop for several years so I could look at the beach whenever I wanted.  I also send the link to my friends who live up in the northeast—Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, and Virginia…..It looks like a pretty beach and I’d like to visit it sometime. I just wanted you, at Ft. Lauderdale, to know that people really DO view your webcam!!  I noticed you changed the position to the northern view, which is a nice view also.” Cindy E., Retired from Lancaster, PA to The Villages, FL

“I love Ft. Lauderdale #Awesome” @Brunodarott: @visitlauderdale @WestinDiplomat on Twitter

“We love Fort Lauderdale and we love your page!”  Cruiser Cats on Facebook

You can now purchase admission passes and rent facilities for outings at Broward County Parks online at webtrac.broward.org.


Through Sept 30: Summer Savings in Greater Fort Lauderdale With 2-For-1 Summer Deals
Through Aug 4: Cirque Du Soleil: Quidam, BB&T Center
Aug 1-9: Grease, Parker Playhouse
Aug 2: Midtown Summerfest, Sistrunk Boulevard
Aug 2: Symphony of the Americas Summerfest Concert, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Aug 3: Mad Decent Block Party, America’s Backyard
Aug 3: Taste It: A Comedy About The Recession, Cinema Paradiso
Aug 7: SunTrust Jazz Brunch, Riverwalk
Aug 7-9: Lilly The Lash & The Garden Gathering Musical & Game Show, Broward County Main Library
Aug 8: Meet the Maker Wine Reception, OCEAN2000
Aug 10: Alabama - Back to the Bowery Tour, Hard Rock Live
Aug 10: Fort Lauderdale Strikers vs Minnesota United, Fort Lauderdale Stadium
Aug 10: Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse Tour, Sands Harbor Resort & Marina
Aug 13-28: ELYSIUM AN IMAX EXPERIENCE®, Museum of Discovery & Science & AutoNation IMAX
Aug 13: OneRepublic with Mayer Hawthorne Churchill, Hard Rock Live
Aug 13: The Cult Electric 13, America’s Backyard
Aug 16-17: Monster Jam, BB&T Center
Aug 17: Chris MacDonald's Memories of Elvis in Concert, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Aug 17-18: Meet the Animals at the Museum of Discovery and Science
Aug 18: India Independence Day, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Aug 18: Kiss, Hard Rock Live
Aug 20: An Evening Under the Moon, OCEAN2000
Aug 22: The Art of Wine and Food Series, Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale
Aug 23-25: Crush Games III, BB&T Center
Aug 23: Pinion Goes to Hawaii, Hilton Style!, Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort
Aug 29: Viva Florida 500 Best in Show Series, Bonnet House Museum & Gardens
Aug 30: Fort Lauderdale Strikers vs Carolina RailHawks, Fort Lauderdale Stadium

Sunny wishes,

Nicki E. Grossman