The Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) was excited to participate again in World Travel Market (WTM), the largest travel show in the English-speaking world, from
November 3-6, 2014 in London. The show attracts more than 50,000 attendees including international travel media and tour operators who book thousands of travelers to Philadelphia annually. The PHLCVB and Philadelphia International Airport hosted a client dinner and our team met with key European travel trade clients and the media to update them on what’s new in Philadelphia, major events in 2015 and ways to best package Philadelphia.

PHLCVB president & CEO Jack Ferguson also participated in a panel with National Geographic Traveler to launch a new joint project between PHLCVB and National Geographic Traveler – a custom 10-page editorial project that celebrates the unique people of Philadelphia, centering on a culture of makers and doers authentic to Philadelphia providing international travelers local experiences. The feature, which will appear in the magazine’s December/January issue (available on newsstands December 2), will profile 12 “Philadelphia Originals” – from restaurateurs and jewelry makers to mural artists and purveyors of local craft beers – all of whom share the passion and entrepreneurial spirit that have invigorated the city.

The supplement, supported by Brand USA, the City of Philadelphia and Philadelphia International Airport, is being translated and will run in four local-language editions of the National Geographic Traveler magazine in China, India, Italy, and the United Kingdom. In addition, National Geographic Traveler will publish an extended guidebook with information for international travelers. The guidebook will be translated into seven languages plus English, and we will use it to market Philadelphia internationally as part of the “PHL: Here for the Making” campaign. Combined with the digital reach of National Geographic Traveler, we will reach millions of global readers through this project. To view a copy of the guide, go to As we start to promote this via social media, we encourage you to help spread the word too!

Other events we highlighted during our participation in WTM London include:

  • World Meeting of Families (September 25 – 27, 2015)
    • The world’s largest family gathering expected to bring together 10,000 – 15,000 delegates from more than 150 nations in faith and celebration. With the recent announcement that Pope Francis will attend, this will be a huge opportunity for us to make the most of the international spotlight that will surely be on our city.
  • Discovering the Impressionists: Paul Durand-Ruel exhibit at the
    Philadelphia Museum of Art (June 24 – September 13, 2015)
    • Philadelphia is the only city in the U.S. to host this exhibition following stopovers in Paris and London. The exhibition in Philadelphia will showcase additional masterpieces making it the largest of all three exhibitions.

  • East Market Redevelopment
    • Revitalization of Market Street East which connects the Pennsylvania Convention Center to the historic district and Old City to ensure a good impression of our city, enrich the visitors’ experience as well positively impact the quality of life of our residents. An example of this redevelopment is the addition of the Century21 department store, which will alter the retail landscape and entice more retailers to Philadelphia and the Convention Center District.
  • Your Brain Exhibition at The Franklin Institute
    • This permanent exhibit is the newest and biggest exhibition exploring how your brain works.
  • Upcoming exhibitions at The Barnes Foundation including Mark Dion, Judy Pfaff, Fred Wilson: The Order of Things (May 16 – August 3, 2015) and Venus and Vulcan: Wrought Iron from the Musée Le Secq des Tournelles, Rouen (September– December, 2015)
  • Tall Ships Festival (June 25 – 28, 2015)
    • The only Tall Ship Festival in the East Coast showcasing 10-15 tall ships including a replica of L’Hermione whichwill dock along the Delaware River on both Penn’s Landing and
      Camden Waterfront.

  • Museum of the American Revolution (opening late 2016)
    A 32,000-sq-ft area of galleries, theaters, interactive exhibits and space to accommodate a range of programming dedicated to the American Revolution and the idea of independence.

  • New PHLASH Holiday Evening Loop
    The expanded night services will take tourists to the city’s holiday attractions including the Franklin Square Holiday Festival, Christmas Village at Love Park, Comcast Center Holiday Light Show, Avenue of the Arts, Macy’s Dickens Village and Holiday Light Show and more.
  • New Hotel openings
    • SLS International Hotel, Broad and Spruce Streets (opening 2016)
    • W/Element Hotel, 15th and Chestnut Streets (opening 2017)
    • Four Seasons Hotel,  top of the new Comcast Innovation and Technology Center  
      on Arch Street (opening 2017)
    • Kimpton Hotel, Ben Franklin Parkway (opening 2017)
    • Hudson Hotel, 17th and Chancellor Streets (opening 2016)
Our international audience was impressed with all that’s happening in Philadelphia in 2015. Of course, many of Philadelphia’s historic, cultural icons including the Independence National Historical Park, Mural Arts Program, Reading Terminal Market, activities at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, and the restaurant and entertainment scene, to name a few, enhance what’s happening in 2015.


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