You can read the full article here, but here is a synopsis of how the tourism market is doing in Foley, Gulf Shores, and Orange Beach.
Highlights from Herb Malone, the president and CEO of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Tourism:
- Over 6 million people visited the Alabama Gulf Coast
- Over $1.3 billion was earned in salaries and wages
- There were over 49,544 travel-related jobs
- Over $4.2 billion was spent in lodging, retail, restaurants, and attractions.
- Because of the Leave Only Footprints campaign, Alabama beaches had 239 sea turtle nests, which is an increase from 148 nests in 2012.
- The Gulf State Park Lodge, walkway over Perdido Beach Blvd, and educational building will open on the beach in May 2018.
- Owa (a major entertainment game changer) will open its first phase in July of 2017
- Last year, 103,562 nights were spent in hotels for sporting events. SportsTravel magazine named the inaugural NCAA Beach Volleyball National Championship the “Best New Event” for 2016.
- NAIA has 3 national championships at the beach: boys track and field, girls track and field, and soccer.
- The USSSA World Series calls the Gulf Coast home.
- The Oyster Cook-Off and the World Food Championship is putting our area on the map for foodies around the world.
- Year-to-date numbers are up from March 2016, 7.4% for lodging and 7.7% in retail.
IXL Real Estate – Eastern Shore