Tourism/Hospitality

ICVA: Stadium's retractable roof worth the cost

August 29, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
Three music events with direct visitor spending estimated at $28 million that were hosted at Lucas Oil Stadium offer proof, city officials said, that the expense of the retractable roof and other features of the $720 million facility are paying off.
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ICVA might take out loan to market city for conventionsRestricted Content

August 24, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
The Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association is so desperate for more marketing funding, the organization charged with promoting the city as a convention and tourism destination is considering taking out a loan. While that would be the last resort, ICVA CEO Don Welsh said it is one he will have to consider if the money can’t be raised through local taxes.
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Adam's Mark converting to Wyndham

August 20, 2009
Scott Olson
The Adam’s Mark Hotel Indianapolis has become the Wyndham Indianapolis West Hotel.
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Columbia Club hires Cincinnati native as GM

August 17, 2009
 IBJ Staff
James B. “Jim” Rentschler, former general manager at the University Club of Cincinnati, has been named general manager of The Columbia Club.

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EDITORIAL: Partisan games plague councilRestricted Content

August 17, 2009
The City-County Council wisely averted disaster for the Capital Improvement Board Aug. 10 by voting to raise the city’s hotel tax from 9 percent to 10 percent, but the razor-thin vote was another disappointing case of elected officials making decisions based on partisanship rather than good judgment.
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City-County Council OKs hotel tax hike

August 10, 2009
 IBJ Staff
The City-County Council voted 15-14 last night to approve raising the local hotel tax from 9 percent to 10 percent in a move intended to help the cash-strapped Indianapolis Capital Improvement Board close a $47 million operating deficit.
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CIB OKs budget, but awaits council vote

August 10, 2009
Scott Olson
Members of the Indianapolis Capital Improvement Board this afternoon passed a $63 million budget for 2010 that hinges on the City-County Council’s approval of a hike in the local hotel tax.
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Senior Open draws 146,915 to Carmel

August 3, 2009
The U.S. Senior Open Championship, which wrapped up yesterday, drew a total of 146,915 spectators to Carmel's Crooked Stick Golf Club for three days of practice and four days of tournament play.
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A new centerpiece for city's convention strategy: medical, science groupsRestricted Content

August 3, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
The Indianapolis Convention and Visitors Association is putting together an all-star corporate consortium to make the city a hub for medical and life sciences conventions, meetings and trade shows. The ICVA began running the initiative full-speed this year and already has signed deals to bring 40 medical meetings to Indianapolis through 2015, including annual meetings for the American Association of Diabetes Educators in 2012 and the American College of Sports Medicine and American Chemical Society in 2013.
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Lawmakers cut state tourism office's budget in halfRestricted Content

August 3, 2009
Scott Olson
Destinations throughout Indiana no longer can count on a state marketing campaign to help drive summer crowds. Lawmakers who passed a budget during the special session at the end of June sliced the state’s annual contribution to the Indiana Office of Tourism Management in half—from $4.8 million to $2.4 million.
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Small town, budget hotels hold own in difficult economyRestricted Content

August 3, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
While the local hotel industry is being rocked by the current economy, budget hotels and those in the small towns surrounding Indianapolis are actually seeing gains. Properties affected by the Indianapolis 500, Brickyard 400 and Big Ten Tournament are among the losers.
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LOU'S VIEWS: Thrill parks offer rides of our lives

July 27, 2009
Lou Harry
This week, three of my fellow IBJ scribes join me in picking our favorite area amusement park rides
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Ambrosia to open downtown restaurant in former BadaBoomz siteRestricted Content

July 27, 2009
 IBJ Staff
The owner of the popular Broad Ripple Italian restaurant Ambrosia plans to open a location downtown on the first floor of the Hampton Inn along Maryland Street.
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Earle Travel Co. perseveres despite flu scare, recessionRestricted Content

July 27, 2009
Riya V. Anandwala
Earle Travel Co. has been weathering challenges as the recession has deepened and H1N1 influenza spiked earlier this year. Those problems have nearly capsized many travel agencies, but co-owner Kelly Shea said Earle’s business slumped only 8 percent last year.
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Indianapolis hotels feel pain of national slumpRestricted Content

July 27, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
Hotel occupancy rates are way down in Indianapolis, as they are elsewhere, but local operators and national analysts think the city is in a good position to bounce back when the economy improves.
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Westfield moves ahead with sports facility plan

July 21, 2009
 IBJ Staff
A study commission has concluded that a major development involving a new youth-sports complex would be viable for Westfield, the city announced this morning.
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Conrad Indianapolis adding wine bar, sidewalk diningRestricted Content

July 13, 2009
Cory Schouten
Plans are in the works for a wine bar called Tastings that would take the first-floor corner space at the Conrad Indianapolis. The $1 million project would add an entrance to the luxury hotel at the northeast corner of Washington and Illinois streets and include a total of 80 outdoor seats along both streets, in the shadow of the Artsgarden.
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Corporate donors standing by $25M Super Bowl pledgesRestricted Content

July 6, 2009
Cory Schouten
Most of the companies that agreed to help underwrite the 2012 Super Bowl are standing by their commitments even as the recession wreaks havoc on their businesses. Of $25 million pledged by more than 80 companies before last year's bid process, only about $1 million is at risk, said host committee head Mark Miles.
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BASILE: Following in the footsteps of Darwin in the Galapagos

June 29, 2009
Frank Basile
There's nothing like following the wildly influential thinker Charles Darwin's own footsteps, which I had the pleasure of doing by visiting the beautiful, mysterious, isolated and enchanted Galapagos Islands.
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Experts doubt Indianapolis can lure huge conventionsRestricted Content

June 1, 2009
Scott Olson
Indianapolis already hosts three of the top 200 conventions in the country. But additional meeting space coming online late next year could help the city double the number.
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Outlying counties, tired of waiting for Indianapolis convention spillover, set own strategiesRestricted Content

June 1, 2009
Anthony Schoettle
Some industry insiders worry that, while Indianapolis is busy chasing bigger conventions, adjoining counties may raid the cupboard made plentiful by investments within Marion County, particularly downtown.
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Indianapolis outpaces Cincinnati in many convention measuresRestricted Content

June 1, 2009

In this Quick Hits look at a competing convention city, Cincinnati boasts more convention space, but Indianapolis draws more guests.

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Arts Council faces grants-divvying dilemmaRestricted Content

June 1, 2009
Kathleen McLaughlin
The Arts Council of Indianapolis faces the unenviable task of divvying up less than $1 million in city grants for the arts, compared with $2.15 million that was awarded last year.
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Tourism should not be our focusRestricted Content

May 18, 2009
If a city really wants to attract people to its city (to live and visit), it has to become a better city, but to become a better city it has to know what it is and what it wants to be and what it can be.
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State tourism advertising poses tough questionRestricted Content

May 18, 2009
Mike Hicks
If Indiana is to be marketed as a region, government will be the one to do it.
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