Home » Lexington tourism saw big boost from Breeders’ Cup and other local attractions

Lexington tourism saw big boost from Breeders’ Cup and other local attractions

Hotel room revenue increased 11%

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 17, 2016) — Tourism in Lexington saw double-digit growth in 2015, in large part because of the success of the Breeders’ Cup, which featured Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, according to a report released today from VisitLEX.

Screen Shot 2016-02-17 at 1.55.58 PM“We are excited to report that 2015 was a very successful year for Lexington, both locally and nationally,” said Mary Quinn Ramer, president of VisitLEX. “Local pride and homegrown innovation continue to reshape and evolve our dining, bourbon and craft beer scenes, inspiring more visitors and garnering attention from critically acclaimed publications.”

Lexington tourism highlights from 2015:

  • Hotel room revenue increased 11 percent, led by a 1.6 percent increase in hotel occupancy and a 7.5 percent increase in average daily rate ($101.01).
  • Demand for hotel rooms grew by 5.5 percent to nearly 1.8 million.
  • Double-digit increases in hotel rooms booked through convention sales reached 102,575, hotel room revenue topped $173 million and room tax collected was more than $10 million.
  • The VisitLEX service department worked with 345 groups to ensure maximum attendance and group satisfaction.
  • 95,000 people attended the two-day Breeders’ Cup event at Keeneland.
  • 29 new restaurants and bars opened.
  • Eight craft breweries are now on the Brewgrass Trail and more than 200 people completed their “passports” by visiting each brewery.
  • VisitLEX’s Visitors’ Center served more than 25,000 visitors, a 23.5 percent growth
  • Lexington was featured in national publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, the Miami Herald, the Chicago Tribune, and Garden & Gun magazine. Much of this national coverage was the result of VisitLEX serving as host to almost 60 travel writers from across the country.