Despite Hurricane Sandy and a still-sluggish economy, a record 52 million visitors descended on New York City in 2012, up 2.1 percent over 2011, the city's convention and visitors bureau, NYC & Company, announced this week.For a recap of last week's top stories, check out MeetingNews Minute:
All told, NYC & Company reported, visitors to New York spent $36.9 billion in 2012, with an estimated economic impact of $55.3 billion. Equally high were the city's market share of overseas visitors to the United States, which was a record 33 percent; its hotel sales, which comprised a record 29 million hotel room nights generating a record $504 million in hotel tax revenue; and its tourism industry employment, which reached 356,000 across New York's five boroughs.
According to NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta, last year's visitors included 5.2 million meeting attendees, up 2 percent from 2011. "Our meetings and conventions segment also continues to perform well," Fertitta said. "In 2012, we had the most spending by our meetings and convention delegates ever ... Total spending was almost $5 billion, again up 2 percent from 2011. All this in a tough economy."
Concluded New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, "New York City continues to attract people from all around the world who want to experience our unique culture, food, parks, shopping, arts and energy. The tourism industry is thriving, creating thousands of jobs for New Yorkers at all rungs of the economic ladder. We are well on our way to achieving our new goal of 55 million visitors and $70 billion in economic impact by 2015."