A packed summer convention calendar likely resulted in a huge boon for Center City hotels, which saw record hotel occupancy in June.

Overall occupancy peaked at 89.4 percent—the highest monthly occupancy on record. The average daily rate also broke a record, witnessing $212.95, the highest since October 2014. The Government Finance Officers Association, the Biotechnology Industrial Organization convention and the International Society for Technology in Education convention helped grow midweek occupancy.  

The Hilton Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing is just one of the hotels that experienced such stellar business.

“June was a great month for us and for many Center City hotels. The importance of conventions to the hotel industry cannot be stated enough,” says Bill Fitzgerald, general manager of the hotel. “When the convention center is consistently filled is when we thrive, benefitting the more than 65,000 hospitality industry workers in Philadelphia.”

The conventions the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau booked resulted in 97,208 room nights in June and generated an economic impact of roughly $121 million.

“We are thrilled that our convention and group business has helped secure the highest June hotel occupancy on record,” says Jack Ferguson, president/CEO PHLCVB. "We consistently tout to our convention groups how easily accessible Philadelphia is for their attendees, and with all the national and international buzz about Philadelphia, conventions are drawing higher-than-average attendance. Three of our largest groups this year have broken or nearly broken their attendance records.”

"We have always done it this way" just doesn’t cut it anymore. The landscape of meeting planning is going through a quiet revolution, and the old rules no longer apply. Instead, they are being replaced with new treatments from the once-sacred conference tote bag to the way chairs in the ballroom are arranged. We talked to meeting planners who are creating fresher, more authentic approaches to your average meetings.  

From “Same Old” to “Can’t Miss”

 

There is nothing like the energy of a college campus as students return for the fall semester. By the time Labor Day hits, many students are itching to get back to their friends and return to routine, even at the cost of exams, papers, and presentations. 

 

Lauren Bennett McGinty took over as executive director of Explore Minnesota Tourism in November 2021. The longtime Minnesota resident who moved here from Milwaukee when she was four has thoughtful reasons about why she remains in the North Star State.

“I moved to Minneapolis after I graduated from [Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter], and I put my roots down here,” she says. “I think a lot of it is I continue to find something new everywhere I go, and the people here are just wonderful. We have such a diverse and rich culture. I love everything about it.”