Park City makes Conde Nast Traveler’s list of Best Places to Go in the U.S.
Condé Nast Traveler, the influential travel publication, has included Park City in its list of the 23 Best Places to Go in the U.S. next year, potentially providing a boost to the tourism industry at a time when there are concerns in the community about the impact of the visitors.
The publication posted the list on Tuesday. The places are listed in alphabetical order rather than by numeric ranking. The publication says editors selected the places independently, but Condé Nast Traveler may earn what is described as an affiliate commission when someone books through retail links.
The entry regarding Park City notes the planned return of the Sundance Film Festival as an in-person event in January after it moved online for two years out of concern of the pandemic. The entry also mentions improvements at Park City Mountain and Deer Valley Resort, as well as lodging and dining options.
“After a two-year pandemic pause, the largest indie film fest in the U.S. brings live events back to Park City this January. But the Sundance Film Festival isn’t the only reason we want to go now, with new offerings all across the mountain town,” the entry says.
The Condé Nast Traveler list includes large cities like Boston and Seattle alongside other resort destinations like Virginia Beach, Virginia. Telluride, Colorado, is the only other mountain resort to be listed.
The Park City Chamber/Bureau is pleased with the Condé Nast Traveler listing. The organization said a sustainable tourism plan it adopted is expected to result in “a drop in occupancy (inbound visitors) coupled with an increase in ADR, also known as average daily room rate.”
“We achieve this through target marketing to specific audiences that will pay higher rates and cause a slight dampening impact on inbound numbers of visitors. One of the most important things we can do to attract those coveted visitors is continue to achieve accolades including the ones in Condé Nast. This is a challenge because every destination on the entire planet would like to be included in that list,” Dan Howard, the vice president of communications for the Chamber/Bureau, said in a prepared response to a Park Record inquiry about the Condé Nast Traveler list. “It is generally a catalyst to get phones ringing in those destinations that land on the list. I can assure you every ski destination in the United States would like to be on this list, particularly at the beginning of December when they are booking their ski holidays.”
He added: “An accolade like this can be the difference in choosing one city over another. We would expect to see a short term boost from an accolade such as this for approximately four months, which covers most of the upcoming ski season. And it can have a long term impact as well because the town is ‘branded’ as a hot commodity. This accolade also helps our hotels by increasing the demand for their rooms because visitors have more reason to want to be here. It increases the value of the destination to be on any ‘hot list.’”
Howard also addressed the Chamber/Bureau’s work to present Park City to the media.
“At the chamber, we have to be especially creative to remain on a hot list when so many destinations are competing for that attention. We bring journalists in to show them our very latest, and hope that it is enough to stay top of mind and out-compete the other ski towns that would like this attention. We get very creative in how we present the town, and we know the journalists personally, so that we can match our town’s top assets with their personal interests so we appear especially delightful in their eyes. Our whole town is counting on us to succeed in terms of these editorial opportunities because they will help us be most attractive to those visitors who can make the biggest difference economically. Without these wins, we may need lots more visitors spending smaller amounts to raise the same amount of revenue. And that style of tourism really isn’t compatible with our Sustainable Tourism Plan,” he said.
Although PEG’s application has been withdrawn, Vail’s development rights remain.
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