Published on : Tuesday, March 13, 2018
Hillsborough County has generated over $600 million in terms of hotel revenue last year making it among the nine countries to pass the threshold for emerging as a ‘high-impact’ tourism destination in Florida.
With the designation the nation is permitted to raise the tax on overnight stays from 5% to 6%.
The county generated nearly $644 million in taxable hotel revenue last year or nearly $700 million before taxes. That sent the bed-tax revenue past Visit Tampa Bay’s $30 million goal at $32.3 million marking a 8% rise as compared to 2016. Pinellas County had beaten the same threshold in the year 2014.
Santiago Corrado who is the CEO and president of Visit Tampa Bay mentioned that Hillsborough had witnessed record-breaking hotel stay numbers nearly every month of 2017.
January, particularly when the College National Football Championship attracted a large number of Alabama and Clemson admirers to Tampa.
The hotel revenue was up by 36% that month as compared to January of 2016.
April and June did not break any records but Corrado mentioned that they were still quite steady. Each had only a small percentage dip in hotel revenue as compared to 2016. The steady growth comes ahead of the areas that observed first hotel boom since the 1990’s like an anticipated 500 rooms tied to the planned Water Street Tampa development on the edge of downtown.
Lou Plasencia, CEO of Tampa’s The Plasencia Group hotel sales and consulting firm, said the demand for the new rooms is there and the Water Street development will only help it grow.
Visit Tampa Bay set the goal to surpass $30 million in collected bed tax money five years ago.
The other counties considered “high-impact destinations” outside of Tampa Bay are Miami-Dade, Volusia, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, and Broward counties.