From the grand opening of the Guesthouse at Graceland to the relaunch of the Heart of the Park at Shelby Farms to the celebration of Big River Crossing, 2016 was a banner year for Memphis. Not to mention the opening of the Hotel Napoleon, as well as several other announcements for more lodging options in 2017.

While Memphis has a pace all its own, I have to say i’m impressed by its gusto and growth in 2016. Just look at what’s on the horizon…. Crosstown Concourse, the Old Dominick Distillery, Elvis Presley’s Memphis and much more!

Sometimes its easy to forget how special our city is, but I’m here to assure you that for those who don’t call Memphis home, they absolutely love it! And that’s visitors, business travelers, tourists and journalists. This year alone our PR staff hosted more than 50 outlets from around the world and landed more than 230 stories with a circulation of more than 58 million and unique page views upwards of 1.7 billion. Our convention sales & services team also continues to impress by landing several new and exciting conferences and meetings.

Once the Convention Center’s renovations are complete, the sky will be the limit for recruiting new business. A large part of the renovation will be improving the spaces within the building to be more in line with what is expected in 21st Century convention facilities. It would be understatedment to say the future is bright.

In other news, MemphisTravel.com has gotten a facelift. The new site has a more modern look and feel. It’s also much more user-friendly and allows for user generated content to help inspire and guide visitors, meeting planners, tour operators and media on why they should choose Memphis.

This time of year we all tend to look back on the year that was… the good, the bad, and of course, the ugly. As a city and destination I couldn’t be more proud of all that was accomplished. And in a way, we are only getting started!

Happy New Year and cheers to a bright 2017!