Louisiana  Pick Your Passion! Travel Pulse Office of Tourism Update
January 10, 2014
Three 2014 GRAMMY Awards® nominees to headline Baton Rouge concert

Hot 8 Brass Band, Zachary Richard and Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience will perform at a Jan. 11 celebration in Baton Rouge recognizing all of Louisiana's 2014 GRAMMY Awards® nominees. Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne and the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism are sponsoring the event.
Terrance Simien and Zydeco Experience
It will also recognize artists who participated in DCRT's 2013 Louisiana Music Ambassadors program, which sponsored Louisiana acts playing at major national and international festivals and venues. The concert begins at 7 p.m. at Baton Rouge Magnet High School's auditorium. Advance tickets are $25 and available at brmhs.ebrschools.org. The three headliners are among 11 Louisiana acts recently announced as finalists for America's top music honor. The acts are spread among categories including Best Regional Roots, Best Americana Roots and Best Album in genres including jazz, country, blues, R&B and gospel.

  Baton Rouge Project Seeking Leads on Local Traditionalists
The Louisiana Division of the Arts Folklife Program is seeking leads on individuals who maintain arts and culture traditions in Baton Rouge and East Baton Rouge Parish for a folklife documentation project. Two professional folklorists will conduct the first wave of project research in Greater Baton Rouge this spring. They are looking for informally learned community-based traditions that help define local culture. Examples include artists and craftsmen tied to distinctive and themed yards, gardens, orchards or landscaping; homes with prayer rooms or altars; recurring music jam sessions in non-commercial settings; and tailors and seamstresses who make costuming for Mardi Gras or other special events. Leads can be forwarded to Maida Owens, director of the Louisiana Folklife Program, at folklife@crt.la.gov.

Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, Natchitoches
  Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame named top architecture project of the year worldwide
The Times-Picayune - The Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame is the top architecture project of the year, according to AZURE magazine, a Toronto-based design publication. Trahan Architects, which has offices in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, designed the Natchitoches museum, which opened July 2. "Besides bringing together two divergent collections, Trahan Architects also managed to build a stunning landmark while respecting the two-story structures that surround it. Any metropolis would be proud to have such a powerful building," according to AZURE.

  Cruise trends a boon for New Orleans
Travel Market Report - Eight years after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and less than three years after the BP oil spill inflicted further damage, the cruise industry is playing a big role in fueling the Crescent City's comeback as a tourism destination. In a year when cruise lines are focused heavily on Caribbean itineraries, New Orleans' relative proximity to the region-just 30 hours by sea to the Western Caribbean and the Bahamas-is a boon for the city, cruise lines and travel agents.

  Industry on pace to set record for tourism-related exports
eTurboNews - The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis recently announced that international visitors spent $15.2 billion on travel to the U.S. as well as tourism-related activities within the U.S. during the month of October-nearly $1.4 billion more (10 percent) than was spent in October 2012. Travel and tourism-related exports have increased, on average, more than $1.3 billion a month in 2013 and are on pace to break the record set last year for total travel exports. The National Travel and Tourism Office expects industry-related exports to surpass $179 billion for 2013.

  Hotel industry expected to gain in 2014
Yahoo - Despite a slow start to 2013 bookings, the hotel industry is finishing strong and should see improvement in 2014, according to recent analysis. In the final three months of 2013 hotel occupancy rates are expected to be up by 4 percent, with revenue per available room increasing 6.5 percent, according to TravelClick, a company that facilitates online room reservations.

  Five social media predictions for 2014
Entrepreneur - When it comes to the state of social media, the past year could be summed up in a few words: real-time marketing, content, video and mobile. In a space that is continuously changing and technology that is advancing quickly, it can be a challenge to know where you should be focusing your social-media efforts. Predictions for social media advances range from more focus on context to visual storytelling.

  Hotels set aside floors for women
USA Today - Book a room on the 11th floor of the Hamilton Crowne Plaza and you will get special bath salts and body products, a magnifying mirror, nail polish, nail files and a curling iron. In other words you will get pretty much anything you need to pamper yourself. They are not exactly the types of amenities that men would go for, but that is the point. The Hamilton Crowne Plaza is one of a small, but growing number of hotels offering floors dedicated to female travelers. These hotels are particularly trying to appeal to female business travelers who are moving up the career ladder and hitting the road more often.

  Travel is the best medicine, study finds
Los Angeles Times - Traveling keeps you younger, or at least healthier. That is the finding of a new study linking travel to decreased risks of heart attack and depression and even the promotion of brain health. The Global Commission on Aging and Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies, in partnership with the U.S. Travel Association, has released research that shows travel offers the same sort of physical and cognitive benefits as crossword puzzles or museum visits.

  Garden & Gun 2014 partnership offers CVBs discounted ad rates
An ongoing Louisiana Office of Tourism partnership with Garden & Gun magazine will create Louisiana insiders' guides in four 2014 issues, and CVBs can purchase discounted ads alongside the editorial content. Each issue will have four one-fourth-page, full color ad spaces that are available for $4,250 to CVBs. The magazine is read by 1.1 million readers and its least expensive ad is $9,305 for a 1/3-page ad. The insiders' guides will be published in the magazine's Hollywood issue (April/May), Southern Getaway issue (June/July), Style & Entertainment issue (October/November) and Sporting South issue (December/January). Participating CVBs will also receive one invitation to Garden & Gun's annual reception. The deadline to enroll in the partnership is Wednesday, Jan. 15. For more information contact Misty Shaw at mshaw@crt.la.gov or 225.219.9858.

Upcoming Meetings & Events   Upcoming meetings & events
  • Jan. 11 Only in Louisiana Event, Baton Rouge
  • Jan. 25 LOT Grammy Event, Los Angeles
  • Feb. 4 – 5 RSAA Summit, Washington, D.C.
  • Feb 5 – 6 RTO Summit West, Marina Del Rey, Calif.
  • Feb 10 – 14 Lt. Governor's Mission to UK and Germany

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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