It’s been a good year for Philadelphia’s hotel business.
About 39 million visitors came to town in 2014, according to Meryl Levitz, who runs the Visit Philadelphia marketing program. When the final numbers are in, Levitz said she expects 2014 will break the city’s record for the number of hotel nights purchased.
“The hotels are reporting this is the best year they have had since 1949. Philadelphia has arrived as a destination for leisure, conventions and business,” Levitz said. “All three segments are geared up and ready to go.”
And hotels are expecting an even better 2015, said Ed Grose of the Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association.
“With the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the papal visit, we’re also starting to see some groups starting to return who said they were never coming back,” Grose said.
Grose said a new labor agreement at the Convention Center has led some convention planners to consider Philadelphia again, after having scratched it off their lists for several years.
Convention-goers and recreational travelers are coming to town, Levitz said.
“We are expecting the record to be broken because all of the wonderful exhibitions, exhibits, programs, special events, and special guests that Philadelphia will be hosting in 2015,” she predicted.
The proof that leisure tourism is up, she said, is the No. 1 booking night in hotels is Saturday with an average 89 percent occupancy followed by Friday nights.