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TOURISM & HOSPITALITY–Culligan Bowl Generates $23M for Local Economy

Convention Center Reports $558M Impact For Fiscal Year 1999

The Culligan Holiday Bowl, which took place Dec. 29, generated $23.2 million in San Diego, according to an annual impact study commissioned by the bowl’s executive staff.

The report, done by locally based Marketing Information Masters, Inc., broke the impact down to $12.2 million in visitor spending, which is considered direct economic impact. The indirect impact includes household earnings and totaled $11 million.

According to the study, the game brought in 32,420 out-of-county residents. They booked a total of 26,200 room nights and stayed an average length of 3.3 nights.

The city of San Diego also had a cash return of $484,207, which includes stadium rental, Holiday Bowl office rent, parking revenue, concessions revenue, sales taxes and hotel room taxes.

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Tourist Dollars: The San Diego Convention Center Corp. recently released its annual report, which stated that the Convention Center had an economic impact of $558.3 million for fiscal 1999.

According to the report, the center hosted 64 “primary business” events, which generate hotel room nights.

The primary events were attended by 362,034 people. Of that, 281,437 attended conventions with trade shows, 5,500 attended conventions only, 22,000 attended trade shows and 53,097 attended incentive meetings.

The center generated 626,279 in hotel room nights and $10.1 million in hotel room taxes.

The remaining 133 events at the center in ’99 were secondary business, including meetings, seminars, community events, food and beverage events, local trade shows and consumer shows.

The center broke several records, including economic impact, hotel room nights, primary business events and out-of-town guests.

The Convention Center Corp. also manages the San Diego Concourse and the Civic Theatre. The concourse generated $77 million in economic impact for fiscal 1999, with 44,514 hotel room nights and $621,266 in hotel room taxes.

The Civic Theatre had an economic impact of $2.4 million, and had hosted 129 separate performances.

Taste Of The Future: Restaurant industry sales in the United States could increase by nearly 5 percent to $354 billion during the year, says a new report released by Deloitte & Touche LLC and the National Restaurant Association.

Take-out meals are increasingly popular, said Steve Steinhauser, a partner in Deloitte’s Southern California Restaurant Industry Practice.

“Because of our pressurized lifestyles today, most consumers are looking for a way to save time, and patronizing restaurants helps them to do so,” Steinhauser said.

Among the trends reported was more than two out of five adults are cooking fewer meals at home than they were two years ago.

Another trend was that 60 percent of consumers weren’t entertaining at home as much as they were two years ago, and were instead taking family and friends to restaurants more often.

It played into what the report said is restaurant operators’ biggest challenge: finding qualified and motivated employees.

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Setting Sail: Commodore Day Cruises, which will begin offering gaming cruises from San Diego to Rosarito, Mexico, on March 24, recently announced its senior management team.

Chuck Summers is vice president and general manager. Summers comes to Commodore from SeaEscape, a Florida-based cruiseline company. Before that, he spent eight years with Discovery Cruise Line, also in Florida.

Jim Fannan, vice president of sales and marketing, comes from U.S. Airways Express, where he held a similar position. David Panek, director of casino operations, comes from the Flamingo Hilton in Reno, Nev. Director of Operations/Finance Dan White heads to San Diego from Commodore’s office in Florida.

The day-cruise company is a joint venture of Hollywood, Fla.-based Commodore Cruise Lines, the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians and other partners based in Rosarito.

Checking In: Through a partnership with United Airlines, Air New Zealand is now offering customers access to San Diego, the airline recently announced. The Hotel del Coronado recently launched “Discover Club,” an online interactive program with seasonal offers and promotions. According to a representative, the goal of the club is to build customer loyalty by giving members a chance to participate in special deals without having to stay at the hotel. The California Caf & #233; at Horton Plaza in Downtown is being rebuilt as another concept in the Corte Madera-based California Caf & #233; Restaurant Corp. Called the Napa Valley Grille, its offerings will be under a “wine country” theme. The restaurant’s new general manager will be Renzo Roder, most recently GM with Tutto Mar & #233; in the UTC-La Jolla area. Chef Bob Hurley, who opened the first Napa Valley Grille in Yountville, Calif., will be executive chef.

The deadline for the next tourism & hospitality column is March 9. Rodrigues can be reached at (858) 277-6359, ext. 107, or via E-mail at trodrigues@sdbj.com.


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