Share Greater Miami CVB promotes #MiamiNow Travelweek Group Wednesday, October 4, 2017 << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Tags: Florida, Miami TORONTO — Miami’s clean-up crews are very quickly restoring the city to shipshape and that’s perfect for a destination that’s home to the biggest cruise port in the world.Miami took a hit from Hurricane Irma last month but the worst effects from the fierce storm were thankfully limited to water damage and debris. “The biggest thing was the flooding,” said Linda Stilmann, Senior Director of Sales Travel Industry for The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, during a visit to Travelweek’s offices this week. Stilmann was in Toronto as part of an industry sales mission for Greater Miami and the Beaches that included meetings with trade media and a lunch event at Cirillo’s Culinary Academy on Oct. 3.Stilmann says downtown Miami is looking great post-Irma: “They got that cleaned up really quickly. I can’t say we were unscathed but everywhere you go they’re moving quickly to get debris out.”Some of the larger attractions are taking this chance to get ready for the winter high season, she adds. One top spot, Jungle Island, is expected to stay closed until the end of October. Miami Seaquarium plans to open Oct. 15.In the meantime the popular Miami Spice Restaurant Month has been extended through Oct. 31, to drive visitation as the city moves into the final stages of its post-Irma clean-up. Nearly 200 restaurants are taking part in the prix fixe dining promotion, offering reduced prices – US$23 per person for lunch and brunch, and $39 for dinner – at dining venues in top neighbourhoods around the city (ilovemiamispice.com).More news: CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise CollectionStilmann reports that most of Miami’s hotels are open (about 90%, she says) and everyone in the CVB has been out on the road getting the word out that Miami is open for business. Many hotels are extending special offers through Oct. 31 as part of the #MiamiNow promotion.Stilmann also notes that PortMiami is as busy as ever. Known as the ‘Cruise Capital of the World’, Miami is a gateway for cruise passengers from just about every cruise line, welcoming nearly 5 million cruise vacationers in 2016.From the Canadian market, visitation was down 4% in the first six months of 2017 versus 2016, but Canada is still the number one international market for Miami, delivering 325,856 visitors in the first half of this year. Next up is Argentina with 307,307 visitors (up 10%) and Brazil with 295,842 visitors (down 14%). Colombia and Germany round out the top five.The up-and-down Canadian dollar, currently sitting at US$0.80, continues to be a struggle for every U.S. destination but Stilmann says she’s optimistic. “We really do have something for every taste and pocketbook,” she says. “Sure, there’s the Fontainebleau, the Nobu and the Confidante for high-end clients, but there are also some great three-star properties with four-star amenities, like the South Seas and the Dorchester, both on Collins Avenue. They’re all very reasonable and you’re still getting that South Beach flavour without the cost. You don’t have to be right on Ocean Drive.”More news: Flights cancelled as British Airways hit by computer problemSee MiamiAndBeaches.com for more details. And for a live look at Greater Miami and the Beaches see the webcams at SeeMiamiLive.com.