Join us as we celebrate the importance of tourism and recognize Broward County's finest frontline hospitality professionals who go above and beyond and deliver SUNsational Service to our Greater Fort Lauderdale visitors! Reserve your seat for Wednesday, May 8 at the Broward County Convention Center. $40pp. Click here to RSVP. Contact Rita with questions.


Average Hotel Occupancy
January 2019
% Change
Average Hotel Daily Rate


Candace Hartsell, the new Senior Business Intelligence Manager at the CVB, has nearly 30 years of experience in government relations, marketing, public relations, media relations and executive management. She was the COO for a start-up software development company in Fort Lauderdale. She also served as the Deputy Chief of Staff and Executive Director of Community & Media Relations for the Broward County Sheriff’s Office. 

Luis DeJesus is the new Customer Relations Specialist in the Strategic Client Services department. He previously worked for Broward County's Human Services, Community Partnership and Homeless Services divisions, as well as Records, Taxes & Treasury as a recorder of officials records. He has a background in customer service and hospitality working for Marriott and other hotels prior to coming to Broward County. 

Please join us in welcoming Candace & Luis DeJesus to the CVB family.  


Last month, Stacy Ritter and Richard Gray attended ITB Berlin (pictured here) where Richard spoke at the Pink Pavilion about Greater Fort Lauderdale's leadership in the LGBT+ platform.

Stacy & Richard, along with Finn Partners, hosted the official party for the Pride of the Americas 2020 in Palms Springs at Hunters Nightclub and met with key LGBT+ media. 

Greater Fort Lauderdale received great coverage in OutWithRyan’s blog on his recent visit to Pride Fort Lauderdale.


What We've Been Doing:

Gabriel Martinez attended training in Bogota, Colombia with Aviatur, Colombia’s largest network of retail agencies. Gabriel also attended ITB Berlin. He also accompanied a VisitFlorida and GFL Destination Preview for UK operator Gold Medal

Gonzalo Rubio conducted an Orlando Sales Mission with five hotel partners meeting with 150 travel professionals and tour operators. Gonzalo also was joined by seven hotel partners at Travel Agent Forum in Las Vegas, meeting with 900 travel professionals. Justin Flippen attended the AAA Travel Marketplace trade show in Foxborough, MA with 10,000 travel consumers in attendance.  

Snapshot from the UK:

The UK Sales & Marketing team are representing the destination at Swanson's and FDM consumer shows in Sweden and Denmark, as well as continuing with the training schedule and educating agents on what's new in GFL. The team also attended UNITE meeting with key members of the UK trade.

The UK PR team are finalizing a photo shoot and travel feature itinerary for Bella Magazine taking place this month. Press coverage was secured in national newspaper Daily Mirrorregional coverage in Irish Daily Mirror and key trade title Travel Mole.


February total traffic: 2,970,022, up 4.1%; domestic traffic: 2,270,837, up 2.8%; international traffic: 699,185, up 8.4%. According to Airports Council
International Report for January, FLL ranked 17th in total traffic, 9th in international traffic and 5th in growth of total passenger traffic.

New Routes Taking Off:
 In May, Silver Airways’ will begin flights to New Bight/Cat Island in The Bahamas. Spirit Airlines’ nonstop service to Raleigh/Durham begins in May and Charlotte in June. In March, WestJet began seasonal service to St. John’s Newfoundland, Canada and Frontier Airlines resumed service to Denver.

Subscribe to the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport’s monthly e-newsletter NewsFLLash for the latest airport info hot off the press.    


The GFLCVB, along with The Diplomat Beach Resort, Fort Lauderdale Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa, The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Margaritaville Hollywood Beach and W Fort Lauderdale, hosted a successful FAM trip centered around the Jazz in the Gardens weekend and booked three pieces of business as a result.  

Additionally, Albert Tucker traveled to Washington, D.C. to make a presentation to the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO). The GFLCVB, in partnership with the Broward County Transportation Division and the Office of Economic Development, secured the conference for July 2020. We thank our County Administrator for her video “Welcome to Broward County Message.”

Join us for the 2nd Annual 2019 Synergy Summit for Cultural & Heritage Tourism May 9-11 at the Signature Grand Conference Center. Local, regional & national tourism, hospitality & travel professionals, tourism-related small businesses will convene to share best practices in cultural & heritage tourism. The Summit will showcase cultural and heritage tourism assets expanding the tourism footprint and economic impact in heritage neighborhoods and multicultural communities. Click here to register.


Photo credit: Gary Curreri. 

The GFLCVB Sports Development department hosted a press conference
(pictured above) announcing Broward County as the host destination for:

  • Inaugural Regional SportAccord Pan America Conference (Dec 2019)
  • Americas Best Practices Symposium & Panam Sports Gala (Dec 2019)
  • Florida Senior Games presented by Humana (Dec 2019 & 2020)
  • National Senior Games presented by Humana (June 2021)
Sports Development welcomes more than 13,000 athletes, coaches and families in April including: USA Powerlifting Florida Championships at NOVA SE University in Davie, USA National Cheerleading & Dance Championships and Fort Lauderdale Volleyfest at the Broward County Convention Center, AAU Basketball Still Live Tournament at the DS Sportsplex in Deerfield, Canadian Hockey Enterprise and CAN/AM Tournaments at the ICEDEN in Coral Springs and YMCA Diving Championships at the Coral Springs Aquatic Complex.


Tortuga Music Festival hits the beach April 12-14 with headliners Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney and Thomas Rhett. Make sure to stop by the House of GFL where the Underground 360 video booth will capture your Tortuga experience from all angles. Unleash your inner artist with renowned painter Hector Prado in our Live Art Activation. And get ready for a glow up, completing your festival look with our variety of trendy flash tattoos. 

UNDERGROUND FILM: The Museum of Discovery and Science is working with Academy Award® nominee MacGillivray Freeman Films to produce a short film entitled, INSPIRATION TAKES FLIGHT. Filming took place last month in the destination, including the Everglades. The movie will be presented in the Museum’s 7D Theater, part of the To Fly Exhibit Hall where Museum visitors’ get hands-on experiences. 

Noelle Stevenson is partnering with IFP, hosting a series of events in NY and LA with key independent filmmakers promoting local incentives to filmmakers. She is also working with Finn Partners to host destination sites to potential a key projection lighting festival.

March Permits = 42


Groups meeting in April will generate more than $13 million to Broward County. Groups include:
Apr 1-8: American College of Radiology (600 attendees)

Apr 1-9: Cruise360 2019 – CLIA (2000 attendees)
Apr 3-5: National Summit for Principal Supervisors (500 attendees)
Apr 7-12: WoodenBoat Publications Inc. Refit 2019 (1500 attendees)
Apr 8-28: Majestic Retreats 2019 (750 attendees)
Apr 12-19: Annual Int'l Anti-Money Laundering Conference (1200 attendees)
Apr 18-27: Passover (1000 attendees)
Apr 21-27: Greater Everglades Ecosystem Restoration (550 attendees)
Apr 25-29: Taste the Islands Experience (1000 attendees)
Apr 29-May 5: 2019 Forum on Construction Law Meeting (500 attendees)
Apr 30-May 2: FY19 Dimension Data Field Kickoff Meeting (1000 attendees)


Enjoy authentic sights and sounds of the Caribbean, celebrity cooking demos, an artisan shopping village, live DJs and more at the 3rd Annual Taste the Islands Experience (Apr 26-28). Food & spirits enthusiasts with a taste for island indulgences will not want to miss this event.

Apr 3-14: 9 To 5 The Musical, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Apr 4: New York Islanders vs. Florida Panther, BB&T Center
Apr 4-14: Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Apr 5: Las Olas Wine & Food Festival      
Apr 5, 12, 19, 26: Friday Night Sound Waves, Fort Lauderdale beach
Apr 6: 2019 Riverwalk Run, Huizenga Plaza
Apr 6: New Jersey Devils vs. Florida Panthers, BB&T Center
Apr 10: Carol Welsman Trio, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Apr 11: Starry Nights presented by AutoNation, NSU Art Museum 
Apr 12-14: Rock The Ocean's Tortuga Music Festival, Fort Lauderdale Beach
Apr 13-14: Miami City Ballet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Broward Center
Apr 18-21: Shen Yun 2019, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Apr 19-: Santana, Hard Rock Live
Apr 20: Downtown Hollywood Mural Project Walking Tour
Apr 20: Aziz Ansari, Hard Rock Live
Apr 23-May 5: Anastasia, Broward Center for the Performing Arts
Apr 25: Whitesnake, Hard Rock Live
Apr 26: Whoopi Goldberg, Hard Rock Live
Apr 27: UFC Fight Night, BB&T Center
Apr 27: Artwalk, FATVillage

For more events visit If you would like to submit an event for approval, go to

Best wishes,

Stacy Ritter, President


Enjoy 2-for-1 deals during Summer Savings at more than 40 attractions May 1 through September 30. Visit to view special summer deals. Special thanks to our many hospitality industry partners for their participation offering 2-for-1 offers for experiences from arts and entertainment to dining and spa treatmentsIf you would like to order Summer Savings cards for your guests, contact Frank Padin to place your order.


Terrace Grill opened last month at the new Dalmar Fort Lauderdale. A go-to for great food in a design-savvy setting, with a big bar, and an even bigger personality.

COMING SOON: The Wharf, an open-air culinary and entertainment venue, will open later this year at the Las Olas Riverfront. Guests will find a laid-back, festive atmosphere, amicable service, rotating fare by local chefs, and food trucks. The venue will also host art shows and live music.

Cao Bakery and Café will open this May in Fort Lauderdale on Federal Highway.


We invite you to submit your celebrations, special offers, and events for Easter, Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day and 4th of July to be featured on dedicated pages on You can easily submit your offers online under your partner login. If you do not know your partner login, contact Rita. When creating your new offer for these holidays, be sure to select the appropriate offer category. Contact Justin with questions.


The GFLCVB, Starmark and Diamond View Studios earned a 2018 Emmy® Award for their collaboration on the “Greater Together” campaign video. The video was recognized in the Commercials category at the 42nd Annual Suncoast Regional Emmy® Awards by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.


Bonjour Bliss Blog: GFL FAM – Family Travel

The 7 Must-Visit Places in the United States


The convention sales team recently participated in: NYSAE Meet NY, 100th Anniversary luncheon in NYC, GFLCVB Client/Consumer Event - Florida Panthers vs Boston Bruins in Boston, Envision 2019 in Las Vegas, Greater Together Tour North Carolina Sales Mission and Connect Diversity in Birmingham, AL.


Congrats to Anna Levin and Dawson Pritchett who are celebrating 5 years of service with the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Apr 1-5: World Travel & Tourism Council, Seville, Spain (Stacy Ritter, Richard Gray
Apr 1–5: WTM Latam, Sao Paulo, Brazil) (Gabriel Martinez)
Apr 4: Global Meetings Industry Day, MPI Westfields Chapter, CT (Jennifer Sena)
Apr 6: CMP Training Luncheon, PA (Jennifer Sena)
Apr 9-10: Seatrade, Miami (Gonzalo Rubio)
Apr 10-13: Global Meeting and Incentive Travel Exchange, Park City (Mike Pouey)
Apr 16-18: Association of Chief Executives for Sports (ACES) Conference, Colorado Springs (Carol Hudson/Saskia Fisher)
Apr 27-30: Tour Connection, NYC (Noelle Stevenson)
Apr 28–May 3: Visit Florida Canada Roadshow, Montreal/Toronto (Gabriel Martinez) 



Justin Flippen, Steve Zunt with Courtyard by Marriott Fort Lauderdale Beach and Madelyn Caban with DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Hollywood Beach and Hyde Resort & Residences at the AAA Travel Marketplace trade show in Foxborough, MA with 10,000 travel consumers in attendance. 

Click here to check out more of our CVB team in action at various events and functions around the world.

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