Another Snow Day, Need Your Help
We are preparing for stranded passengers due to winter storms impacting a third of the US population. If you are able to offer a distressed rate for tonight through Friday, please contact Fernando Harb firstname.lastname@example.org with your hotel name, phone, distressed rate and rooms available.
Greater Fort Lauderdale Warms up NYC
Greater Fort Lauderdale’s "Find Your Sunny" tour created a buzz last week attracting winter-weary New Yorkers to stop and take a look at our spectacular Greater Fort Lauderdale billboard that wraps around Toys R Us at 44th and Broadway. Here, we set up “Defrost your Swimsuit” ice blocks with frozen bikinis and swim trunks while our “Beach on Wheels” rode around the block with ‘Here Comes the Sun’ music. Street teams handed out sunny.org ice scrapers and promo cards with a chance to win a free getaway at www.sunny.org/findyoursunny. Street teams in front of NYC's Apple Store, spread the sunshine by handing out flip flop cell phone cleaners. Nicki Grossman did TV interviews in the snow with LXTV. Click here to watch. View the photos on Facebook by clicking here.
We Made The News
The “Defrost Your Swimsuit” campaign was covered by AP, Yahoo, Sun-Sentinel, Miami Herald, New York Metro, South Florida Business Journal, WPLG, Celebrifi, Noticias 41, WIOD, CBS 4 and 99.9 FM. Alfredo Gonzalez was interviewed live by Telemundo 47 Acceso Total in NJ. Click here to watch. To watch the clip of staff members and hotel partners getting great exposure outside the CBS Early Show click here.
Happy Groundhog Day
Our annual Groundhog Day email campaign broadcast to 200,000 consumers. Punxsutawney Phil is so over the gray days of winter. He wants colorful. He wants sizzling. He wants to slip into something sunny...and sip on something yummy. Watch Phil enjoy a warm getaway amid the Blue Wave beaches, relaxing waterways and exotic Everglades in Greater Fort Lauderdale. Consumers can enter at http://sunny.org/groundhog to win one of 25 pairs of Fossil sunglasses and get a tasty recipe for a Defrost Your Swimsuit martini.
Valentine’s Day Special Offers
Visit http://sunny.org/valentine to see special Valentine’s Day offers for attractions, concerts, dining, and accommodations. It’s not too late to add yours. If you have a special romantic package or special spa treatments for two, wine pairings or other creative ideas, send to Kim Canter email@example.com.
Congrats to Award Winning Hotels!
The W Fort Lauderdale was voted one of the Top 10 Trendiest Hotels in the U.S. by TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Awards. Click here to view. The Pillars ranked #1 among high end Fort Lauderdale hotels by TripAdvisor. Click here to read about it.
B Ocean Fort Lauderdale, the first hotel of the new upper-upscale B Hotels & Resorts brand that is making Fort Lauderdale its corporate offices home, is now open. The new property features 240 guest rooms and suites all overlooking the Atlantic Ocean with floor-to-ceiling windows, free high speed Internet, B Treated goodie tray, B’stro on the Beach™, and Quench patio and pool bar. The hotel’s signature sushi-teppanyaki restaurant, SAIA, will open in the coming weeks. Rooms also feature B Humane™ with a stuffed plush that is designed to bring awareness to sea turtles. B Ocean’s Fort Lauderdale Friends & Family Industry Biz rate is $169 from now thru the end of April 2011 subject to availability.Promo code is: FLLBIZ. Congrats to the Fort Lauderdale Marriott Coral Springs Hotel & Golf Club ranked #10 out of 329 Marriott hotels on their Event Satisfaction Survey.
The Queens Have Arrived
In January, Port Everglades hosted port calls by the “three Queens” in Cunard Line’s fleet of luxury ocean liners. Cunard’s new Queen Elizabeth called at Port Everglades for the first time on Jan 16, during a “Royal Rendezvous” world tour with Queen Victoria. Queen Mary 2 called at the Port the day prior as a stop on the ship’s world voyage. The new ship features memorabilia from her namesakes, the original Queen Elizabeth and Queen Elizabeth 2. In 1968, the original Queen Elizabeth was the largest cruise ship in the world at 83,000 gross tons. The new Queen Elizabeth is 90,400 gross tons and is considered mid-size, especially when compared to the 151,400-gross-ton Queen Mary 2 and 225,282-gross-ton Oasis-class ships by Royal Caribbean.
Broward County's Port Everglades has been selected for the third consecutive year as the Best U.S. Homeport by Porthole Cruise Magazine. The award is timely, as Port Everglades just announced their first quarter fiscal year revenue totaled $37.5 million. This quarterly revenue is more than 22% higher than the peak of $30.6 million reported three years ago before the Port was impacted by the global recession. Cruise traffic at Port Everglades also jumped 25% during the first quarter over the same time period in the prior year, setting a world record for passengers. This double-digit growth is expected to continue as the cruise season progresses through the winter months. From October through December 2010, the first quarter of Broward County's fiscal year, a record 1,174,629 cruise passengers transited Port Everglades compared to 940,057 in the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2010. Port Everglades hosts more ships, more cruise lines, more sailings, and more vacation itineraries than any other cruise port in the world.
The Plane Fact: FLL News
Total passenger traffic for the month of December was 2,118,575, up 10.3% over December 2009. International traffic was 359,811, up 16.1% for the same period. December marked the 16th consecutive month of positive growth in total passenger traffic, the fourth consecutive month of double digit growth, and the busiest December on record for total passenger traffic. On the international side, December was the busiest month on record for international traffic. Year end 2010 total traffic was 22,412,627, up 6.4% over 2009. International traffic was 3,447,393, up 13.9% over 2009 and was the busiest year on record for international traffic. Traffic for the first half of 2011 looks very positive. The new service that began in the last quarter of 2009 will continue to add increased numbers. Spirit’s new service to 5 cities began a few weeks ago, United/Continental returns in February with daily flights to Denver and Chicago, and Vision Airlines begins service to Louisville in March. On the international side, Condor returns in April. Several other international cities are also being planned with announcements to come in the next few months.
After working with Mark Evans, Travel Editor for the Evening Herald in Ireland, Fort Lauderdale won the Best Long Haul Holiday Award: herald.ie. Florida Travel + Life Affordable Luxury television show will be shooting the destination early February, as well as Dreamscapes from Canada. Alex in Florida, from the Travel Channel in Quebec, arrives mid-February and Bump TV from Canada is coming at the end of the month. We also had two shows from the Travel Channel Quebec and Shop TV visit last month.
In January, Alfredo Gonzalez represented the CVB at Reisliev in Oslow, Norway. He and Josh Winston met with JetBlue and Travel Impressions representatives in Connecticut to promote new nonstop service from Hartford to Fort Lauderdale. Later, they were joined by partner hotels for product launches in Allentown, Philadelphia and Washington, DC. Promoting the destination to the Latin American market, Fernando Harb met with Brazilian journalists. He and Alfredo Gonzalez also attended Florida Huddle in Daytona Beach where they presented at the closing luncheon, as Greater Fort Lauderdale will host Florida Huddle in 2012. To see part of their presentation, click here. Alfredo finished up the month in New York City for the “Find Your Sunny” tour and attended the NYC meeting planners event at Tomate Rouge.
Last month we hosted the culminating reception for Urban League Executives who were at the Westin Beach Resort & Spa preparing the Urban Agenda for 2011-2012. The executive board committed and will be signing a 3 year contract to keep the Mid-Winter Conference in GFL, the first time in history they have done this. Site visits also took place for their next open date for the Urban League Annual Conference, a huge economic impact to Broward County.
Convention Sales Team Update
The convention sales team recently participated in the following: PCMA Annual Meeting, GFLCVB Tallahassee Sales Mission, HCEA Annual Summit in MD, Lauderdale Convention Collection Event in NYC, and RCMA Annual Meeting.
Catch the sales team at these upcoming events and tradeshows:
Feb 9–11: MPI Northern California Chapter Annual Tradeshow & Sales Calls, San Francisco
Feb 16–18: Association Management Center Annual Institute, Uncasville, CT
Feb 22: ACME Annual Meeting, Washington, DC
Feb 23-24: DMAI Travel Foundation Annual Dinner & Showcase, Washington, DC
Feb 28-Mar 1: North Central Florida Meeting Planners Expo, Gainesville
Feb 28-Mar 2: Lauderdale Convention Collection, Washington, DC
Upcoming Sales Missions Want to join us? Contact the group sales team leader listed.
Feb 9-11: MPI Northern California Chapter Annual and Sales Calls (Elena Gladstone)
Feb 28-Mar 2 North Central FL Meeting Planners Expo, Gainesville (Michele Bemis)
Mar 14-18: Carolina Sales Mission (Michele Bemis)
Apr 5-7: Mid-Atlantic Sales Mission (Sally Slater, Dion James)
Apr 17-19: Milwaukee Sales Mission (Nora Gorman)
Apr 18-21: Minneapolis/St. Paul (Stacy Copeland)
Apr 28: ASAE & The Center’s Springtime in The Park (Sally Slater)
May 3-5: Boston Sales Mission (Christine Tascione)
May 9-13: Dallas Sales Mission (Angella Lopez)
June 6-10: Philadelphia Area Sales Mission (Steve Aird, Dion James)
June 6-10: Omaha/ Iowa/ Kansas City Sales Mission (Stacy Copeland)
June 14-17: Seattle & Portland Sales Mission (Elena Gladstone)
July 11-13: Fort Lauderdale Mini-Tradeshow at Chicago Yacht Club & Sales Calls (Nora Gorman)
July 23-26: MPI World Education Congress Tradeshow and Meeting, Orlando (Christine Tascione, Sally Slater)
Aug 7: St. Louis & ASAE Client Event (Stacy Copeland, Nora Gorman, Sally Slater)
Sept 7-8: HSMAI’s Affordable Meetings National, DC (Dion James)
Sept 19-21: St. Louis Sales Mission
Oct 10-14: New York Sales Mission (Steve Aird)
Oct 11-13: IMEX America (Christine Tascione)
Oct TBA: Atlanta Sales Mission (Michele Bemis)
Dec 13: Association Forum’s Holiday Showcase, Chicago (Nora Gorman)
Mark Your Calendar for these 2011 Group Sales Missions/Destination Previews: Mar 17-20; May 19-22*; July 14-17*; Sept 15-18*, Nov 3-6*. *These dates are currently tentative. Hotels and specific arrangements for the itinerary are currently in progress for all of these previews for next year. Details of our 2011 calendar of tradeshows, sales missions and previews were sent out in early November to hotel Directors of Sales (and Marketing). If you need another copy of the documents, visit www.sunny.org/partners.
February Group Sales Update
Groups meeting in February will generate more than $18 million to Broward County. Sample groups include:
Feb 6-11: Aon Property Symposium (475 attendees)
Feb 7-14: PRI-MED South 2011 (4000 attendees)
Feb 18-28: AUSA 2011 Winter Symposium (4500 attendees)
Feb 19-27: 2011 Leaders in Construction Business Executive Conference (400 attendees)
Feb 20-Mar 4: The BMO Capital Markets 2011 Annual Conference (1000 attendees)
Feb 21-23: SEAA 2011 Conference (550 attendees)
Greater Fort Lauderdale welcomes the following sports groups in February, with more than 21,000 competitors plus family and friends:
Feb 3-7: Les Grandes Dames Tennis Tournament (300 attendees)
Feb 9-19: BK Halken Swedish Team Training (400 attendees)
Feb 10-13: Big Ten Golf Championship (250 attendees)
Feb 18-21: President's Day Soccer Classic (3000 attendees)
Feb 18-21: Jr International Water Polo Tournament (850 attendees)
Feb 18-21: Presidential Classic Softball Tournament (3300 attendees)
Feb 18-21: FL JR Panther's President's Day AAA Tournament (750 attendees)
Feb 18-21: High School President's Day Tournament (400 attendees)
Feb 18-21: Florida Sunshine Cup (250 attendees)
Feb 18-21: A1A Marathon (4000 attendees)
Feb 19-21: Weston Cup Soccer Tournament (6000 attendees)
Feb 24-28: Ruggerfest (600 attendees)
Feb 25-27: FL Masters Challenge (800 attendees)
Pace yourself. Greater Fort Lauderdale welcomes A1A Marathon, Feb 20
The Publix Fort Lauderdale A1A Marathon & Half Marathon invites you to participate in the 6th annual running of the event on the weekend of Feb 20. Anyone interested can register through the website at www.A1AMarathon.com. A $20 discount has been extended for your entry into the Full or Half Marathon events. Use discount code: PUBLIX A1A (all caps).
Superior Small Lodgings
The CVB has created a Facebook page for SSL: www.facebook.com/superiorsmalllodgings to better communicate with each other, share comments and reach out to consumers too. Become a fan and join the conversation. With more than 500,000 facebook users, we encourage SSL members to get their business started on Facebook. A Facebook Workshop with the CVB internet marketing team is scheduled for the next SSL meeting on February 16 at 8:30am. SSL members should plan on attending and your laptop for one-on-one assistance.
Film & Entertainment
In addition to still photography, documentries, and TV commercials, current productions in the works include: TV Series: America’s Most Wanted, STF Productions, Inc.; Police Women of Broward County, Long Pond Media; Four Weddings, Kirkstall Road Enterprises, Inc.; HGTV: My First Sale, High Noon Productions; La Mariposa, Iguanas Entertainment Inc.; Designing Spaces, O2 Media; MADE – Emma Pagano, New Remote Productions, Inc. / MTV Networks; The Gadget Show, North One Television; All Worked Up, RDF Media USA, Inc.; Kitchen Nightmares with Gordon Ramsay (revisit to Lighthouse Point’s Le Bistro), Fox TV Telenovela: Alguien Te Mira and Aurora, Telemundo Music Video: Timati, The Film Factory, Inc. Movie: Mark of Cain, ASK Media Productions.
Water Taxi celebrated the grand opening of their new service in Hollywood. Water Taxi has 16 stops in Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, and service 5 days per week to South Beach. www.watertaxi.com. Sun Trolley expanded their current A1A and Las Olas service on Fort Lauderdale Beach 9:30am–6:30pm Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and now Monday. Sun Trolley’s A1A route is from Harbor Shops (17th Street Causeway & Cordova Road) to The Galleria Mall (Sunrise Blvd). The Las Olas route runs from Marriott’s Beach Place to the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.
ROK:BRGR is the newest concept to hit South Florida, a gourmet burger bar and gastropub located in the historic Himmarshee District in downtown Fort Lauderdale.Open for lunch, dinner, happy hour and late night dining. Try the truffle fries! www.rokbrgr.com. The Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel recently opened their newest restaurant, Dos Caminos. The iconic beachfront property now features this haute Mexican cuisine, bringing the authentic, creative Mexican cantina from New York and Vegas to the Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel. www.sheraton.com/fortlauderdalebeach. Gordon Ramsay, the host of Fox TV’s “Kitchen Nightmares,” returned to Le Bistro in Lighthouse Point last month for what’s known as a "revisit." (Le Bistro was originally featured on the show last March.) Episode set to air in April. Ludacris, the actor and rapper, celebrated his sister’s birthday at Cafe Martorano in Fort Lauderdale. Meanwhile, Steve Martorano is set to appear on “Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best?” at 9pm, Feb. 8.
HSMAI South Florida Networker at Grateful Palate
Join HSMAI South Florida on Wed, Feb 16 from 5-7pm for its first networker of the year at a Fort Lauderdale hidden gem for foodies and wine-lovers, The Grateful Palate on 17th Street in Fort Lauderdale. Renowned Fort Lauderdale life coach and psychic, Cynthia, will be on hand for short readings -- ask about your love life, career or finances. The Grateful Palate has generously offered attendees a 20% discount on dinner following the networker. RSVP at www.hsmaisouthflorida.org, cost $10.
8th Annual Women's Power Caucus Conference
The two-day Women’s Power Caucus brings together established and emerging female leaders, achievers and women of action and providing an environment where successful strategies and leadership principles are shared through supportive networks. The event will be held at Hyatt Regency Pier 66, May 13 & 14. For info on sponsorship contact Woodie Lesesne at (954) 243-3518 or (954) 966-1233.
Happenings Around Town
Through-Apr 24: Vatican Splendors: Art and Faith, Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale
Feb 1: 2011 GLBT Travel Expo Tour, Embassy Suites Fort Lauderdale
Feb 2: Improvised Shakespeare! Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 2: Winter Concert Series, Emma Lou Olson Center, Pompano Beach
Feb 2-4: Shen Yun Performing Arts, Barry Douglas, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 3: The Wizard of Oz, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 4-5: Fort Lauderdale Children’s Theatre Talented Glee Club “Sound Wave” Galleria Mall
Feb 4-5: Penn & Teller, Hard Rock Live
Feb 5: An Evening with Diana Krall, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 5: Great Bridal Expo, Broward County Convention Center
Feb 6: Sunday Jazz Brunch, Broward Center
Feb 6: Celtic Women, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 7: Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 8: Florida Panthers vs. St. Louis Blues, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 9: This Heart of Mine, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 10: Enrique Iglesias, Hard Rock Live
Feb 10: Florida Panthers vs Buffalo Sabres, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 10: The Pink Floyd Experience, Parker Playhouse
Feb 10-12: The Tales of Hoffman, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 11: Dance Theatre of Harlem Ensemble, Miramar Cultural Center
Feb 11: Great Big Sea, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 12: Barrage "Animado" Parker Playhouse
Feb 12: The Music Man, Miramar Cultural Center
Feb 12: Duck Fest Derby, Esplanade Park, downtown Fort Lauderdale
Feb 12: Gold Coast Derby GRRLS vs Charlotte Roller Girls, War Memorial Auditorium
Feb 12: Knuffle Bunny, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 12: Dennis DeYoung: The Music of STYX with Rock Symphony, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 12-Mar 13: Florida Renaissance Festival, Quiet Waters Park, Deerfield Beach
Feb 13: Beauty and the Beast, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 13: Florida Panthers vs San Jose Sharks, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 13-14: Cirque de la Symphonie of the Americas, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 14: Andrea Bocelli, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 14: Marvin Dixon presents For Lovers & Others, Miramar Cultural Center
Feb 14: Tango Inferno, Parker Playhouse
Feb 15: Dancin’ and Romancin’ Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 15-27: West Side Story, Broadway, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 16: Florida Panthers vs Philadelphia Flyers, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 16: Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, Hard Rock Live
Feb 16: Make & Take Painted Wood Garden Hanger, Cypress Hammock Park, Coral Springs
Feb 16: Winter Concert Series, Emma Lou Olson Center, Pompano Beach
Feb 17-20: An Evening with Lucille Ball, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 17: Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, Parker Playhouse
Feb 18: Fight Time 3 – “It’s War” War Memorial Auditorium
Feb 18: Florida Panthers vs Detroit Red Wings, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 18-Mar 4: For Art’s Sake! The Collide Factory, Fort Lauderdale
Feb 18-19: Jungle Book, Miramar Cultural Center
Feb 19: FORTLAUGHS, Parker Playhouse
Feb 19-20: NewLife Expo/Yoga & Raw Food Expo, Broward County Convention Center
Feb 20: A1A Marathon, Downtown Fort Lauderdale
Feb 20: Ozzy Osbourne, special guest Slash, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 22: Turandot, Miramar Cultural Center
Feb 23: Taste of the Beach 2011, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea
Feb 24-27: Ella, Parker Playhouse
Feb 24: Turandot, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 25-27: Big Cypress Shootout, Billie Swamp Safari
Feb 25: George Lopez, Hard Rock Live
Feb 25: Jubilee Dance Theatre, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 26: Secret Garden Tour of Fort Lauderdale, Church-by-the-Sea, Fort Lauderdale
Feb 26-27: Seminole Tribe of Florida Orange Blossom Festival, Parade & Rodeo, Bergeron Rodeo
Feb 26: Children in the Arts Piano Competition, Emma Lou Olson Center, Pompano Beach
Feb 26: Green Day! Environmental Expo, Liberty Tree Park, Plantation
Feb 26: Kurt Peterson & Victoria Mallory, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Feb 26: Sistrunk Parade & Street Festival, Fort Lauderdale
Feb 26-27: Gun & Knife Show, War Memorial Auditorium
Feb 27: Florida Panthers vs New Jersey Devils, BankAtlantic Center
Feb 28: Gipsy Kings, Hard Rock Live
Feb 28: Itzhak Perlman, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
All best wishes,
Nicki E. Grossman