Meet Minneapolis, Convention and Visitors Association, which promotes and sells the Minneapolis area as a destination for conventions and meetings, is celebrating 2014 as the most successful year in hospitality the city has seen. Record highs in hosted events, hotel occupancy, average daily hotel rate, revenue per available room, leisure and hospitality jobs along with the organization achieving all its key performance indicators.
What Meet Minneapolis President and CEO Melvin Tennant deemed the “Best. Year. Ever.” Included securing the 2018 National Football League (NFL) Super Bowl and 2019 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Men’s Final Four, and hosting a successful series of conventions and events such as the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Game and Meeting Professionals International World Education Congress.
Meet Minneapolis is responsible for achieving annual goals on its contract with the City of Minneapolis including four key performance indicators (KPIs), and all were met with success in 2014: nearly 504,000 future hotel room nights booked for meetings and conventions, nearly 71,000 leisure room nights booked, over $1.5 million in sponsorship revenue earned and $16.6 million in revenue at the Minneapolis Convention Center, which is the highest revenue recorded for the facility in its history.
Hosting a record 534 meetings and conventions in 2014, Minneapolis’ annual hotel occupancy was 72 percent with a record high $148 annual average daily rate (ADR) and another record high $107 revenue per available room (RevPAR). Minneapolis hotels, the sustained performance at 72 percent annual occupancy during the traditionally slower winter season.
Results achieved in 2014 ultimately add up to a busy hospitality industry with the City of Minneapolis boasting more than 31,000 leisure and hospitality industry jobs.
“Collectively, these results are the envy of other cities,” said Tennant. “It’s also important to note that the ground work for all of this was laid years ago.”
Not only has the addition of the New Minnesota Stadium, under construction and set to open in 2016, helped to attract business to the area, but also the continued infrastructure improvements like the METRO Green Line, which began light rail service between downtown Minneapolis and Saint Paul in June 2014, and the many millions of dollars in hotel renovations. Additionally, planned renovations of Nicollet Mall and Target Center attract favor from groups booking future meetings and conventions in the city.
AEG Facilities-managed Target Center, recently released that the arena ranks as the No. 1 arena in the Twin Cities, No. 6 in the U.S. and No. 17 worldwide based on the number of event tickets sold in 2014, according to Pollstar, the leading concert trade publication. Owned by the City of Minneapolis, the arena closed out 2014 with its highest ranking ever on the Pollstar year-end charts, attracting thousands of visitors to downtown Minneapolis throughout the year.
Meet Minneapolis anticipates a busy convention season in 2015, led by the 35,000 estimated attendees expected to participate and watch the action at the National Senior Games in July, which will be hosted in conjunction with Saint Paul and Bloomington. Other significant meetings and conventions in Minneapolis include: the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (March), the Society of Government Meeting Professionals (April), Sister Cities International (July), National Association of Black Journalists (July-August), Railway Interchange (October) and National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of English and Irish Dance Teachers Association of North America (November).
“We certainly hope to replicate the past year’s success in the future,” Tennant commented. “Of course, not every year will provide the same set of opportunities, but we at Meet Minneapolis see nothing but a bright future for our city and our quest to become the destination of choice.”