The number of people traveling to New York for meetings and conventions grew 5.3 percent last year, from 5.6 million in 2012 to 5.9 million in 2013, according to preliminary data released today by New York's convention and visitors bureau, NYC & Company.
Meeting attendees - consisting of domestic visitors traveling 50 miles or more and spending at least one night in the city, plus international visitors - spent an estimated $5 billion in 2013, up 6.3 percent from $4.7 billion in 2012.
"New York City is breaking visitation records year over year, and we are on track to receive more than 55 million visitors to the five boroughs during 2014," Fred Dixon, president and CEO of NYC & Company, said in a statement. "Meeting and convention delegates are incredibly important contributors to this ongoing success, and New York City continues to develop MICE product to accommodate these growing numbers."
Also up in 2013 was hotel inventory: New York ended 2013 with more than 500 hotels and more than 96,000 hotel rooms, according to NYC & Company, which said the city already has added 1,000 new rooms in 2014. With 34 new properties scheduled to open later this year, it's expected that the city will close 2014 with 104,500 hotel rooms.
"We believe New York City is the best place in the world to do business and are committed to driving further increases by showcasing the city's variety, flexibility, value and vibrancy," said Jerry Cito, senior vice president for convention development at NYC & Company. "Face-to-face meetings are key in forming successful business relationships, and New York City offers a variety of settings throughout the five boroughs to do so."