Louisiana  Pick Your Passion! Travel Pulse Office of Tourism Update
October 23, 2015
LTLA accepting applications

The Louisiana Tourism Leadership Academy is accepting applications for the 2016 class. The goal for this program is to build future tourism leaders, develop their leadership skills and strengthen their networks through interaction with seasoned industry leaders and up-and-coming professionals. The yearlong program focuses on leadership, management, advocacy, product development, networking and marketing. Applications must be received by Nov. 1.

Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne with the 2015 LTLA class Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne with the 2015 LTLA class


  Nine Louisiana chefs take over Austin eateries
Noted chefs from Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Covington, Lafayette, Lake Charles and New Orleans recently took over some of the most notable eateries in Austin, Texas, for a night. The event put on by the Office of Tourism, LTPA and Texas Monthly magazine mirrored a successful 2014 event staged in Birmingham, Alabama.
 


NOLA Hotels   NOLA hits hotel inventory benchmark
Hotel inventory in New Orleans recently surpassed availability prior to Hurricane Katrina, marking another milestone in the city's tourism growth, industry officials recently announced. There are 38,243 hotel rooms in Greater New Orleans, surpassing the 38,117 that were available in August 2005.
 


  Cajun heritage focus of Great Acadian Awakening
More than 100 events composed the Great Acadian Awakening in southwest Louisiana. In its second year, the weeklong event offered activities centered on history and culture in several Acadiana cities, with the goal of celebrating and preserving regional traditions among tourists and locals.
 



Baton Rouge
  Baton Rouge among best value U.S. destinations
A recent Trivago.com study ranked Baton Rouge among top affordable domestic destinations. The hotel search site used average overnight prices and provider reputation based on more than 82 million traveler reviews to compile the list.
 


  Shreveport continues positioning as craft beer destination
Craft beer is big in the tourism world, and Shreveport-Bossier City continues to make strides as a prime microbrewery destination in Louisiana. The twin Red River cities are home to three craft breweries-Louisiana's second-highest concentration after Greater New Orleans-and Shreveport-Bossier's brews are sold in local restaurants and promoted by various events.
 



Crying Eagle Brewery, Lake Charles
  Lake Charles breaks ground on craft brewery
Groundbreaking ceremonies recently took place for Crying Eagle Brewing Company in Lake Charles. The 15,000 square-foot facility plans to offer tap and tasting rooms, spaces for private events and live music beginning this spring.
 



New Orleans Halloween
  New Orleans a 10Best for Halloween
New Orleans was recently named a USA Today 10Best pick for Best Halloween Destination. The outlet cited the city's haunted structures and cemeteries and October's annual Voodoo Music & Arts Experience as top October activities. World destinations on the list included Derry, Northern Ireland, and Transylvania, Romania, while domestic destinations included Salem, Massachusetts, and Sleepy Hollow, New York.
 


  St. Francisville, New Orleans providers among best haunted inns
The Myrtles Plantation in St. Francisville and The Dauphine Orleans Hotel in New Orleans were recently named USA Today 10Best picks for Best Haunted Hotel. The Myrtles is said to be haunted by former residents of the antebellum plantation, and The Dauphine by ghosts of Civil War soldiers.
 


Ted Bogich, senior vice president of operations; Ron Frye, vice president of design and construction for Boyd Gaming; Louisiana state Sen. John Smith; Boyd Gaming president and CEO Keith Smith; Vinton Mayor Kenneth Stinson; Louisiana state Rep. Michael Danahay; and Delta Downs Vice President and General Manager Steve Kuypers.
Ted Bogich, senior vice president of operations; Ron Frye, vice president of design and construction for Boyd Gaming; Louisiana state Sen. John Smith; Boyd Gaming president and CEO Keith Smith; Vinton Mayor Kenneth Stinson; Louisiana state Rep. Michael Danahay; and Delta Downs Vice President and General Manager Steve Kuypers.
  $45 million in upgrades set for Delta Downs
Delta Downs in Vinton launched a $45 million expansion that will almost double overnight capacity and expand dining and events options. When the project concludes in late 2016, the room count will rise to 367, and all rooms will be either new or renovated.
 


  AARP study forecasts boomer travel trends
Travelers 50 and older have wish lists including relaxing weekends and summer getaways, with bucket-list destinations and travel perks garnering consideration, according to a recent AARP survey of more than 800 baby boomers.
 


  Infographic outlines social media effects on travel
To celebrate World Tourism Day last month, an Irish firm created an infographic outlining social media's effects on tourism. Social media remains a huge player in travel, with consumers researching and sharing their travel experiences on networking sites. These reviews are typically perceived as more credible and authentic than traditional advertising and marketing strategies.
 


Upcoming Meetings & Events   Upcoming meetings & events
 


If you have comments or suggestions for future issues of Louisiana Travel Pulse, contact Jay Tusa at jtusa@crt.la.gov or 225.342.8142.

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