NEW YORK -- With
the Republican National Convention just a week away, some
travel-related businesses have lowered their expectations for an
economic windfall from the four-day event. Still, the convention
will be far from a bust.
At least its not
expected to be as disappointing as last months Democratic National
Convention in Boston, which reportedly yielded $14.8 million
overall for the city, or a tenth of what city officials had
PricewaterhouseCoopers is predicting the citys hotels will
be 87% full from Aug. 30 to Sept. 2 when the convention is in town.
Thats an 18% improvement from the 73.7% occupancy during the
comparable week last year.
The city has
blocked some 22,000 hotel rooms, or 186,000 room nights, for the
50,000 anticipated convention-goers. Thats about 10 times as many
room nights as the typical convention held in New York, according
The convention is
not going to materially change our rates; maybe well be up by just
5%, to about $180, said Vijay Dandapani, chief operating officer of
Apple Core Hotels.
Its going to be
somewhat of a wash. Although hotels will have new business because
of the convention, a lot of regular tourists arent going to come
because the convention is in town, Dandapani said.
president of NYC & Co., the citys tourism marketing group,
said, Keep in mind the convention is happening during the slowest
part of the season. If the Republican convention werent coming to
town, we probably wouldnt have other business taking its
which turned away two shows worth about $100 million, New York did
not turn away business to make room for the RNC, Nicholas
meanwhile, is doing all it can to keep local enterprises in the
black. In a first for a national political convention, NYC &
Co. launched a discount promotion for the sanctioned protesters who
will descend on the city to trumpet their causes.
Political Activists promotion includes discounts on attractions,
restaurants, hotels and sightseeing for such protesters.
will be given to these organizations for distribution to its
members. The buttons will also be available at the citys Visitor
Information Center at 810 Seventh Ave. at 53rd Street and visitor
information kiosks located at the southern tip of City Hall Park at
Broadway and Park Row and on 125th Street at Adam Clayton Powell
In addition, the
citys popular Summer Restaurant Week promotion, which has nearly
200 restaurants offering prix-fixe, three-course lunches and
dinners at reduced prices, was extended through Labor Day. It
originally was set to end on July 2.
The city also is
promoting a Summer Breaks campaign, with discounts at hotels,
Broadway shows, cultural attractions and sightseeing tours for
customers who pay with their American Express card.
delegates, NYC & Co. recruited more than 400 businesses from
all five boroughs to participate in a Come Early, Stay Late
promotion from Aug. 22 to Sept. 8.
As part of the
promotion, all 43 convention hotels are extending their convention
rates through Sept. 8. The idea, said NYC & Co., is to get
delegates and their families to turn their visit into a
reporter Jorge Sidron, send e-mail to [email protected].