Tourism in Palm Beach County is expected to either tie or exceed its all-time high this year, the Sun-Sentinel reported, citing tourism officials.
Six million visitors flocked to the county in 2005. A TravelsAmerica Visitor Profile Report this week showed a 12 percent year-over-year increase of the number of tourists, bringing the figure to 5.47 million people. Hotel occupancy and rising room rates are major factors. So far this year, local hotels saw an occupancy rate of 75.2 percent, according to data from Smith Travel Research. Over that same period last year, hotels were 71.3 percent occupied. The average daily room rate rose year-over-year from $153.46 to $158.66.
“With nearly 5.5 million visitors contributing more than $5 billion to the local economy in 2012, travel and tourism continue to play a critical role in Palm Beach County’s economic development,” said Glenn Jergensen, executive director of Tourist Development Council, in a statement. [Sun-Sentinel] — Mark Maurer