Visit Orlando partnered with leading multicultural media companies and their influencer talent to host custom-branded content video series filmed across Orlando.

Throughout the year, integrated digital and social content will promote Orlando and connect authentically with our key diversity audience segments while driving incremental travel demand. This includes:

  • Urban One: The Black Travel Guide — A seven-minute video is now available on MadameNoire, Urban One’s lifestyle website, targeting black travelers in our key out-of-state markets on multimedia TV, radio, digital and social media. Award-winning travel expert, journalist and television host Kellee Edwards explores Orlando’s local food scene, attractions and outdoor adventures, featuring Chocolate Kingdom, The District GastroBar, Epic Paddle Adventures and Gatorland. Watch it here.
     
  • NGL Collective: Mitu Travel Conmingo — Fernanda Romero, Mexican actress, model and singer, and local blogger Lexy Monty host an episode titled “Travel Conmigo,” where they explore a selection of Central Florida’s Unbelievably Real locations and experiences, including Exploria Stadium, The COOP by 4 Rivers and Get Up and Go Kayaking. The episode targets the national U.S. Hispanic market through digital and social media campaigns. Check it out here.

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Wall of murals in Eatonville

Celebrating Juneteenth & African American History in Orlando

This week, we commemorated Juneteenth with event celebrations that marked the cultural contributions of our African American community. Several events throughout Orlando took place, including Juneteenth 407 Weekend in downtown Orlando’s historic Parramore neighborhood. Patrons took part in a scavenger hunt, mixer and block party. The Kia Center hosted the Orlando R&B Experience concert with famous musical artists like Ginuwine, Tyrese, Xscape and more. Visit our blog highlighting Orlando's African American history and the historic buildings, museums and black-owned restaurants that make Orlando a diverse, welcoming and inclusive city.

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LGBTQ+ Owned Restaurants in Orlando

To spotlight Orlando’s unique dining scene while celebrating Pride Month, Visit Orlando’s social media team created an Instagram Guide available to over 390 thousand followers. The guide lists LGBTQ+ Owned Restaurants in Orlando ranging from breakfast and dinner venues to bakery and wine options, including Visit Orlando members, Se7en BitesThe Glass KnifeHungry Pants and Bites & Bubbles. In addition, we partnered with blogger and Instagram influencer, Christina Petsos, to share her experiences visiting LGBTQ+ restaurants in Orlando on this blog. Since 1991, Orlando has pioneered in LGBTQ+ tourism dating back to the original Gay Days. We were even named the first-ever “City of the Year” by GayCities.com.

Key Tourism Indicators

For the week ending June 17: Metro Orlando occupancy was 74.7%, up from last week's 67.4% and down 1.2% from the same week last year. The Average Daily Rate for the week was $187.41, up 2.9% from last year.

Industry Employment: The Leisure and Hospitality sector within the Orlando MSA gained 2,600 jobs from April to May and is now 104% of pre-pandemic employment. The sector is comprised of three areas:

  • Food Services and Drinking Places grew by 0.9% from April to May. The sector is currently at 106% of February 2020 employment.
     
  • Arts, Entertainment and Recreation grew by 0.6% from April to May. The sector is currently at 106% of February 2020 employment.
     
  • Accommodations grew by 1.2% from April to May. The sector is currently at 95% of February 2020 employment.

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Around the Destination

Unique Places in Downtown Orlando: Visit Orlando member organizations, Cocktails & ScreamsHigh-T Orlando and 1Up Orlando, hosted our team members for a unique downtown Orlando experience of their venues and offerings. The locations included a bar & craft cocktail lounge and speakeasy, restaurant and nostalgic arcade. Our team also took a group photo in front of the Unbelievably Real mural at the corner of Orange Avenue and Pine Street. Be sure to visit and show your Orlando pride by snapping a photo here too!

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CFHLA CARES Drive: Each year, the Central Florida Hotel & Lodging Association (CFHLA) conducts collection drives to support Central Florida students in need throughout Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Between July 11 and July 18, residents are encouraged to donate gently used suits, dresses, dress shirts, ties, belts, shoes and accessories for their professional attire collection drive. For more details, click here.

Knife & Spoon whole snapper

Top Steakhouses in Orlando: A recent Robb Report article named Michelin One Star restaurants Capa (Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort) and Knife & Spoon (The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes) among the best 11 steakhouses in the world. The restaurants—also honorees of the inaugural edition of the Florida MICHELIN Guide in 2022—were recognized for having qualities that enhance the dining experience for its customers, including stunning views, an open kitchen, world-class food selections and cocktails. Access the full article here

2023 SPORTYS Winner: Congratulations to Visit Orlando’s manager of business development, Travis Binkley, on being named a winner of Greater Orlando Sports Commission’s 2023 SPORTYS. The award honors sports business professionals whose contributions and impact have been vital in making Greater Orlando a premier sports destination. 

Visit Orlando board member and president & CEO at Central Florida Hotel & Lodging Association, Robert Agrusa, was also honored as the inaugural winner of the Greater Orlando Sports Commission's 2023 Sports Tourism Alliance Award. He was recognized as an outstanding executive in the tourism industry who has demonstrated exceptional leadership and support for sports tourism in Greater Orlando. 

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Recent FAMs: In partnership with our hotel and attraction members, our travel industry sales team welcomed two European travel groups—German tour operator FTI and UK specialist operator Magic Breaks—through familiarization trips. We immersed them in an engaging itinerary highlighting selections of our city's diverse offerings, unique experiences and attractions. It was an exciting opportunity for our team and Visit Orlando members to showcase our industry's hospitality while allowing European travel agents to discover the endless possibilities for creating unforgettable Orlando experiences for their clients.

Visit Orlando Engaged!

TDC Presentation:
 Visit Orlando provided a quarterly update to Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and the Tourist Development Council. During the presentation, our chief operations officer, Mario Bass, shared Visit Orlando’s recent activities, including a joint mission in New York City with Mayor Demings and City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, the celebration of National Travel & Tourism Week, the launch of a new Value of Tourism campaign and more. In addition, our director of market research & insights, Maria Henson, presented convention research and the state of our industry.

HIMSS Annual Convention: This week, the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), an organization devoted to improving healthcare quality, safety and cost-effectiveness, hosted its annual conference. Visit Orlando's chief sales officer, Mike Waterman, presented to business leaders on meetings and convention trends, the state of the industry before and after COVID, and how the industry is currently performing. HIMSS' annual convention will return to Orlando next year in March, with an expected 43,000 attendees.

Orlando Day of Education: The Global Business Travel Association Central and North Florida Chapter hosted a Day of Education for its members ranging from corporate travel and meetings executives to corporations and travel suppliers. Visit Orlando’s director of market research and insights, Maria Henson, provided attendees with an update on travel and tourism, current industry research and new experiences in Orlando.

Casandra Matej's photo and signature for Tourism Matters