The City of Houston set another record year in convention sales. Visit Houston announced that for the third straight year, a large number of room nights, tied to future conventions, were booked in 2017.
Houston First, which operates in partnership with the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau under the brand name “Visit Houston,” is responsible for bringing conventions and tourism to the city.
“Our city is experiencing the return on investments in our convention district. More conventions and hotel room nights result in more jobs and an overall positive economic impact on Houston,” said Dawn Ullrich, president and CEO of Houston First.
The sales team booked 429 conventions and meetings in 2017, representing 802,852 room nights, up from 765,401 room nights in 2016.
“Our sales, events and services teams are to be commended for their tireless work to grow and strengthen Houston’s convention and meeting business,” said Ullrich.
Mike Waterman, president of Visit Houston, agrees with Ullrich. “Our sales team’s production jumped from 550,000 room nights in 2014 to more than 800,000, a 41 percent increase, surpassing our 2017 goal by more than 50,000 room nights.”
All of these increases can be attributed by Super Bowl LI, the World Series, renovation of the George R. Brown Convention Center, activation of Avenida Houston (a downtown entertainment district), and new restaurants and hotels openings, like the Hilton Americas-Houston.
“Houston has spent the last several years improving our infrastructure to compete on a global scale. We are thrilled that our global profile as a destination is being solidified and we expect this positive momentum to continue to build,” said Waterman.
Houston First currently manages more than 11 city-owned buildings, plazas and parking facilities.