Anaheim/Orange County Visitor & Convention Bureau (AOCVCB) today announced, during National Tourism Week, more than 21 million people visited the City of Anaheim in 2014, up 16 percent from the previous year. The rise in tourism added $6.8 billion in revenue to the Orange County economy (source: 2014 Orange County Visitor Profile, CIC Research, Inc.). Orange County as a whole, achieved a record breaking 10-year visitor high, with nearly four percent more visitors than 2013 coming to the sun-drenched vacation destination for fun, sun and surf.
“Tourism in Anaheim is on the upswing – making significant economic strides in 2014,” said Jay Burress, President & CEO, AOCVCB. “Just driving down the streets of Katella Ave. and Harbor Blvd., you can see the commitment the City of Anaheim and extended tourism community has made in upgrading our offerings. New hotels, eateries, attractions – are just a few examples of the revitalization of this great city that gives us the momentum to grow and welcome more visitors year after year.”
Orange County tourism has rebounded to pre-recession levels and spending skyrocketed past the $10 billion level – reaching $10.7 billion for 2014, up 11.2 percent from 2013. The majority of visitors were from domestic soil (42.09 million), but foreign visitors to the area increased by 6.4 percent from the previous year.
Within the Anaheim Resort™ district, more than $200 million dollar in investment for hotel development and renovations, has helped the city welcome more tourists to the area, and added 1,500 hotel rooms to local inventory. Tourists staying in Anaheim hotels overnight increased by 9.5 percent in 2014, equaling 4.96 million visitors. More than a quarter of those overnight visitors in 2014 were in Anaheim attending business or convention/meeting events.
Convention Center Expansion
In addition to the city’s vast hotel development, the Anaheim Convention Center broke ground on it’s seventh expansion, adding additional 200,000 square feet of flexible meeting space to the building, solidifying its spot as the largest convention center on the west coast. The two-year project will add an additional $9 million of tax revenue to the City of Anaheim plus 1860 construction jobs and 2000 new permanent jobs to the local job force. The Anaheim Resort™ district contributes approximately 50 percent to the general fund tax revenues, supporting vital city services such as Fire and Police departments, local parks and libraries.
The New Downtown Anaheim
Anaheim’s downtown area has seen a significant revitalization and revamping of historic structures to create a cultural hub of eclectic artisans, eateries and one-of-a-kind shops. Downtown areas, the Anaheim Packing District and Center Street Promenade give locals and tourists alike a walkable downtown area that provides modern dining options, live music and entertainment, open outdoor space to relax or play a game of ping pong, weekly Farmer’s Market, among many other fun activities.
To find out more on the development of Anaheim and the economic impact of tourism, visit www.anaheimoc.org