Hawaii tourism is on pace for a record year, with tourist spending through September up 20 percent to $9.59 billion year over year.
It’s a significant enough recovery that The Wall Street Journal sent a reporter over to take in the scene. Excerpts:
The revival of tourism follows a sharp drop after the 2008 credit crisis and recession. The number of visitors fell 15% in 2009 from 2008, prompting hoteliers to discount average daily room rates 13% to $178 from $203, according to a joint report by Hospitality Advisors LLC, an industry consulting firm in Honolulu, and Smith Travel Research Inc., a market-tracking firm based in Tennessee.
Hawaii started seeing a return to growth from the mainland U.S. and elsewhere about two years ago, “and from January on, it’s been gangbusters,” said Joseph Toy, president and chief executive of Hospitality Advisors.
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