Visit Anaheim, the destination organisation for Anaheim, announced its 6th consecutive record-breaking year for both spending and visitation in 2018. According to preliminary reports, the landmark year welcomed 24.4 million visitors to the Southern California city and visitor spend topped the charts at $9 billion across Orange County. Visitor expenditures cascades across a variety of sectors including lodging, meals and beverages, amusement, shopping and local ground transportation.
Compared to 2017, Anaheim visitor spend rose 4.3 per cent throughout Orange County and total visitation to Anaheim rose 0.7 per cent. Since 2013, Anaheim visitor spend has risen 54 per cent and visitation to Anaheim has increased steadily by 30 per cent.
“Anaheim is proud to serve as the epicentre for tourism in Orange County which delivers positive economic benefits for every corner of the county,” said Jay Burress, President and CEO, Visit Anaheim. “Tourism is an incredibly competitive landscape. The fact that 2018 heralded in another milestone year underscores the successes of destination development projects that have kept Anaheim attractive to visitors and meeting planners. All of these enhancements will continue to prove beneficial and positively impact our neighbourhoods and region for years to come.”
Since 2016, approximately $4.5 billion in destination development investment projects have surged across the city. Theme park enhancements offer unrivalled guest experiences while Anaheim’s hotel portfolio continues to expand, 1,555 hotel rooms were added to the greater Anaheim Resort district in 2016 and 2017. Revamped neighbourhoods offer a haven of hip new community hubs, dining and brewery options. Exciting sports enrichments and cutting-edge transportation have all continued to push the envelope to drum up visitation.
In late 2017, the Anaheim Convention Center’s 200,000-square-foot expansion, ACC North, debuted and cemented the center as the largest on the West Coast. Annual conventions expanded their programs into the new space which ushered in record-breaking attendance for shows throughout 2018 including The NAMM Show, BlizzCon, VidCon and Natural Products Expo West.
“The future is bright for Anaheim. With the opening of Disneyland Park’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge land slated for this summer, AAA Four Diamond luxury properties set to open within a year and many more development projects in the works, we anticipate Anaheim tourism to positively contribute to the economic vitality of the region for a long time to come,” says Burress.