Media Contacts:
Jennifer Lotz
New Orleans CVB 

Marta Martinez
New Orleans CVB

Marco Aguilar
Travel Pie-Mexico
52-55 5280-68-31

New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau Embarks on Mexico Sales Mission
Several New Orleans representatives travel to Mexico today to promote New Orleans as a premier international destination

NEW ORLEANS – July 22, 2008 – For the second year in a row, New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau (New Orleans CVB) officials will journey to Mexico to promote New Orleans as a leader in international travel to encourage more Mexican visitors to explore the Crescent City. Kim Priez, Vice President of Tourism and Martha Martinez, International Sales Manager from the New Orleans CVB will travel to Monterrey and Mexico City, Mexico July 21-25, 2008.

This year, the New Orleans CVB will host two customer events and nearly 20 sales calls with tour operators, wholesalers, incentive houses and media to tout New Orleans as a vibrant and exciting travel destination. The trip to Mexico is one component of the New Orleans CVB’s international tourism outreach, which also includes sales and public relations in France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and Asia-Pacific.

In addition to the representatives from the New Orleans CVB, this year’s sales mission includes six representatives including the Louisiana Office of Tourism, the Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel, the Hotel Monteleone and Hospitality Enterprises. Also joining is Mexico-based international representative Marco Aguilar. Aguilar has represented New Orleans through the New Orleans CVB and the Louisiana Office of Tourism since 1998.

“Mexico is the second producer of inbound travelers to the United States after Canada, and New Orleans has been a favorite destination among Mexican travelers over decades,” said Aguilar. “With world-class attractions, unique restaurants, amazing night life and of course, Tax-Free Shopping, New Orleans and Louisiana provide the experience most Mexicans are seeking. New Orleans and the Mexican market are a perfect match, so we must continue to put our wonderful destination in the eyes of the Mexican traveler!”

In 2007, New Orleans hosted 7.1 million visitors, a 92 percent increase over 2006. During this time, according to the Louisiana Tax-Free Shopping Report, Mexico was ranked second on a list of international countries that frequently visit New Orleans. Tourism officials hope that reaching out to Mexican travel officials will spur visitor numbers back to 2004 visitor levels.

“International visitors are so important to New Orleans’ tourism industry because they like to experience all aspects of the city and feel right at home with the international flair and culture of New Orleans,” said Kim Priez, vice president of tourism sales for the New Orleans CVB. “Our goal with these international sales missions is to spread the word that the New Orleans visitor experience is alive and well. This proactive outreach will hopefully result in many visitors from our neighbors to the south and all over the world.”

Consistently recognized as one of the top five convention and visitor bureaus in the United States, The New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau is the driving force behind New Orleans' most important industry, tourism. Today the cultural riches, sensual indulgences and unparalleled service that define the New Orleans experience continue to flourish, as they have for centuries. The most celebrated and historic core of the city - including the French Quarter, Central Business District, Warehouse and Arts District, Magazine Street, the Faubourg Marigny and Garden District - are thriving. In 2007, New Orleans welcomed 7.1 million visitors, nearly double the amount of visitors in 2006. For more information, visit