Ventura, CA, October 17, 2014 --(PR.com
)-- The August Smith Travel Report (STR), which tracks hotel transaction statistics, verifies numbers that local hoteliers already knew—summer occupancy rates in hotels in VenturaCountyWest (cities of Camarillo, Oxnard and Ventura) were some of the highest in years. August occupancy rates were 85.1 percent for Ventura, 83.7 percent for Oxnard and 86.1 percent for Camarillo.
The original goal for VenturaCountyWest was to have a sustained annual occupancy rate of over 70 percent. That goal was reached in June and the numbers have grown ever since. Year-to-date occupancy rate gains over 2013 are 6.5 percent for Ventura, 9 percent for Oxnard and 6.9 percent for Camarillo.
“This past summer is the best summer the hotel has had in over five years,” says Alissa Van Keuren, Ventura Beach Marriott’s director of sales. Van Keuren attributes the increase to a variety of factors. “We had a number of different local activities that drew people to the area including the Dallas Cowboys training camp, the Ventura County Fair and many sports tournaments,” she says. “All of these were instrumental in impacting hotel occupancy throughout VenturaCountyWest along with our normal summer leisure travel from the Los Angeles area, the Inland Empire and Bakersfield.”
Lodging establishments throughout VenturaCountyWest had similar summer experiences. “A few years back during the recession we suffered along with everyone else, but our numbers have been showing growth year after year and this summer has far exceeded others,” says Dolores Licon, director of sales for Hilton Garden Inns Oxnard/Camarillo. “Plenty of tour groups, family vacations, business travelers, wedding blocks and sports tournaments in the area have boosted our occupancy. First-time visitors say then never knew how beautiful our city and beaches are. Many express how much they would like to come back to spend more time exploring the area.”
In 2012, the Ventura County Lodging Association (VCLA) was formed to oversee VenturaCountyWest marketing efforts. Its campaign has included digital, radio, television and print advertising and a strong social media campaign primarily targeting Southern California cities as well as reaching out to people who plan meetings to let them know about the lodging choices, team-building activities and value equation offered in this coastal area.
“The positive exposure through advertisements and promotions has definitely been effective. The Courtyard Marriott had an awesome summer. I would say it has been the best in the past several years,” says Sean Briody, senior sales manager, Courtyard by Marriott, Oxnard/Ventura. “We accommodate a lot of Asian and European travelers. In the past, those who might have felt they had to lodge in Santa Barbara County or further north are now realizing the great opportunity to enjoy the same entertainment and weather in VenturaCountyWest.”
VenturaCountyWest is facing competition for business and leisure visitors from other California cities and regions. “More and more are forming tourism organizations such as VCLA,” says Rebekah Evans, VCLA executive director. “We have an advantage since we are well on our way in our marketing of VenturaCountyWest as a great value for outstanding lodging, dining, entertainment, shopping and outdoor recreation.”
Ventura County Lodging Association (VCLA)
The Ventura County Lodging Association (VCLA) is comprised of lodging facilities and destination marketing organizations in the California cities of Camarillo, Oxnard and Ventura. VCLA represents 61 members including hotels, motels, bed & breakfasts, RV Resorts, resort rentals, the Camarillo Chamber of Commerce, Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau and Ventura Visitors & Convention Bureau. Its "VenturaCountyWest" marketing campaign is designed to attract overnight leisure and business visitors to the region. www.venturacountywest.com www.facebook.com/venturacountywest