An economic impact report released by the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board on May 7 found that the 50 million tourists who visited the L.A. region spent $23.9 billion, helping to generated $36.6 billion in total economic impact. Tourist spending was up 5% over last year. Nearly a third of those dollars were spent on hotel and accommodations.

The county’s hotels sold a record 30.2 million hotel rooms with an average daily rate of $180.17. The stays generated $308 million in collected tax funds for Los Angeles, which was up 8.7% over last year.

Tourists had more rooms to choose from last year with 11 new hotels coming online, according to Atlas Hospitality Group. An additional 45 hotel projects were under construction and the group estimates an additionally 3,000 rooms will be available by next year.

Many of the new hotel are located near the Convention Center, where developers and city officials are looking to draw in more visitors.

Ernest Wooden Jr., head of the board, said that the coming years will place even more emphasis on delivering community benefits thought tourism. The rising number of visitors comes as the region is preparing to take the global spotlight with the 2028 Olympic Games.

Already, foreign visitors accounted for 7.5 million of the tourists, the largest number came from Mexico followed by China.

The increased demand helped drive increased employment at hotels, airports and restaurants. The tourism dollars supported 534,258 leisure and hospitality jobs in the county, including 9,700 new jobs that were added last year. About one of every eight jobs in the county were related to tourism.

Manufacturing, retail and trade reporter Rachel Uranga can be reached at ruranga@labusinessjournal.com or (323) 549-5225 ext. 251. Follow her on Twitter @racheluranga

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