Robin Des Bois Keeps it Buzzing on Smith Street
Photo by Johannes Kroemer
Brooklyn is getting hotter and hotter as a brand, and a tourist destination. A major travel and leisure magazine just named our fair borough one of the 15 best places to see in the world right now. We’d name the magazine, but doing so causes us to receive a mountain of spam. So, we hope that you can figure it out—they’re a luxury line of magazines that sort of dominate the field, including travel and leisure titles, The New Yorker and more, and the magazine in question is their top travel publication.
The travel publication urged travelers to check out Brooklyn’s “trendy bars, restaurants, galleries and shops,” and enthuses there’s “nothing cooler than being among the first at the hippest spots in the city.”
I’m getting a gag reflex here, but I suppose it’s good for local businesses, especially the rash of hotels that are going up around Fourth Avenue, in preparation for the new Nets stadium being built in Ft. Greene.
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, ever the Brooklyn booster, released a press statement Friday, saying that since Borough Hall opened the Brooklyn Tourism Visitors Center seven years ago, “we have partnered with NYC & Co. and Brooklyn’s cultural institutions, hotels and restaurants to make sure visitors to New York City stay and play in Brooklyn.”
Last year, New York City welcomed a record 48.7 million visitors who collectively spent $31 billion, the press release says.
“Part of the overall success of NYC tourism can be attributed to the emergence of Brooklyn as a popular and vibrant NYC destination,” said NYC & Co. CEO George Fertitta. “Borough President Marty Markowitz’s leadership has been instrumental in growing Brooklyn’s tourism industry—he created the first visitors center outside Manhattan to further promote all that this exciting borough has to offer.”
Condé Nast gives credit to “stylish immigrants” who transformed” dive bars into wineries, abandoned warehouses into playhouses, and a gothic bank building into a massive flea market.”
Since 2002, when Harvard professor Michael Porter’s study, “Initiative for a Competitive Brooklyn,” identified tourism as one of the borough’s four major economic growth clusters, Markowitz says, he has made tourism an economic development priority—commissioning “Marketing Brooklyn to Brooklyn and Brooklyn to the World”; forming the Brooklyn Tourism Advisory Board to advise and inform the development of the tourism industry in Brooklyn; providing support though capital funding and zoning.
Successes, Markowitz says, include the award-winning visitbrooklyn.org website. Since 2005, Brooklyn Tourism provided tours and other assistance for over 60 articles in national/international magazines and newspapers. The total circulation of these publications was more than 22 million.
Other Brooklyn mentions: Lonely Planet, which named Brooklyn one of the world’s “hottest destinations” in 2007, chose it to be one of the first pullout mini guides in its inaugural, international Lonely Planet Magazine in December 2008, alongside Edinburgh, Scotland and Singapore. In September 2009, Britain’s Daily Mail urged visitors to “leave Manhattan to the tourists, Brooklyn is New York’s real gem.” In November 2010, National Geographic encouraged readers to visit Brooklyn for “cool shops, pop-up art galleries and authentic eats.”
To read the full Condé Nast Traveler article: www.concierge.com/cntraveler/articles/503536?all=yes.
For more information on The Brooklyn Tourism Visitors Center, go to www.visitbrooklyn.org.