Philadelphia and the Countryside - Press Room

All Releases (Newest First)

Oct 16 2014

Backgrounder: Eco-friendly Philadelphia

Obsession For The Environment Takes Over The City Of Brotherly Love

Philadelphia’s bike-share program, to begin in spring 2015, is just the latest news in the city’s eco-friendly efforts. Long a pioneer in the environmental movement, Philadelphia is attracting increasing global attention for efforts to become a leader in urban sustainability. Attractions, organizations and the city itself hold prestigious designations, including a major award from the Environmental Protection Agency. Not to be outdone, the region’s service amenities and modes of transportation are also advancing the green revolution.

Here’s a look at Philadelphia’s green cred:

Eco-Events:

  • The Clean Air Council’s 5K Run for Clean Air is Philadelphia’s largest Earth Day celebration.
...
Oct 8 2014

Stats & Facts From City Of Philadelphia Controller's Report

On September 9, 2014, the Office of the Controller released An Analysis of Philadelphia’s Destination Marketing Infrastructure and Its Role in the Hospitality Industry. In the report, Controller Alan Butkovitz praised the work of VISIT PHILADELPHIA, an organization founded in 1996 to build Greater Philadelphia’s image and attract leisure visitors to the region.

Below are excerpts directly from the report that are related to VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s work and mission. Read the full report here.

VISIT PHILADELPHIA Marketing:

  • “Much of [leisure tourism] growth can be attributed to the promotional strategies of Visit Philadelphia.”
  • “In 2013, Center City
...
Oct 8 2014

Summer Brings In Big Business For Philadelphia Hotels

Saturday Night Occupancy At Center City Hotels Tops Previous Years

This summer brought in big business for Center City, Philadelphia hotels, with overall occupancy topping out at 79.5%—the highest it has been since 2008. And weekend occupancy, a heavy travel time for leisure visitors, continues to soar. Hotels enjoyed record occupancy on Saturday nights (90.9%), and Friday occupancy (82.6%) matched last summer, showing that travelers are eager to get their weekends started.

“Many people thought that hotel occupancy would be down in Philadelphia this summer because we didn’t have major events like the U.S. Open golf tournament,” said Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of VISIT PHILADELPHIA. “But we

...
Oct 7 2014

Visit Philly Makes Top 10 List For Destinations On Social Media

Visit Philly Is The Top-Ranked U.S. Destination In Skift Article

Visit Philly made Skift’s list of the “Top 10 Travel Destinations on Social Media for September 2014,” released on October 1, 2014. Coming in fifth on the list, Visit Philly was the highest-ranked U.S. destination marketing organization, following Tourism and Events Queensland, Walt Disney World Resorts (the park system), Tourism Australia and Travel Alberta.

Visit Philly counts 650,000 fans and followers on a dozen accounts. To come up with the rankings, the travel intelligence company Skift quantifies social media effectiveness by examining “performance on an absolute basis, as well as relative to within a company’s specific industry.”

“Social

...
Sep 25 2014

Philadelphia Marks 2015 With New Exhibits, Anniversaries & The Pope

Tall Ships, World Meeting Of Families, Alice In Wonderland & Other Events Dot The Calendar

With 2015 comes plenty of reasons for visitors to plan a trip to Philadelphia. In fact, The New York Times ranked Philly in the #3 spot in its article of the "52 Places to Go in 2015."

So what’s on the calendar? Tall Ships Philadelphia Camden, showing off a dozen historic ships on the Delaware River Waterfront; Discovering the Impressionists: Paul Durand-Ruel and the New Painting, featuring 80 works by a who’s-who of painters at the Philadelphia Museum of Art; and Down the Rabbit Hole: Celebrating 150 Years of Alice in Wonderland at The Rosenbach of the Free

...
Sep 23 2014

Carl M. Buchholz Joins VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ Board Of Directors

VISIT PHILADELPHIA announced today that Carl M. Buchholz will join its board of directors, effective immediately. The managing partner of DLA Piper (US) LLP in Philadelphia, Buchholz concentrates his practice in complex commercial litigation and government relations.

“Carl’s commitment to moving Philadelphia forward and his extensive knowledge about city interests will help shape VISIT PHILADELPHIA strategies,” said Manuel Stamatakis, VISIT PHILADELPHIA board chairman. “I look forward to welcoming him to the board and incorporating his ideas.”

Buchholz formerly served as a special assistant for Homeland Security to President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2002. During that time, he

...
Sep 23 2014

Everything's Coming Up Modern In Philadelphia

From European Impressionism To American Avant-Garde, America’s Most Historic City Doesn’t Shy Away From The New

With one of the largest collections of public art in the country, a wide sampling of great buildings from virtually every contemporary architectural style and an unparalleled assemblage of art museums, Philadelphia shines as a key player in the contemporary art scene. A stellar lineup of galleries, centers and artists’ studios completes the picture. Here are highlights:

Museums:

  • The French impressionists are widely considered the forebearers of modern art, and the new Barnes Foundation, housing one of the world’s premier collections of Renoirs, Matisses, Picassos and Cézannes, is a fitting celebration of their innovation. Designed by the husband-and-wife team
...

Tagged: Arts & Culture
Sep 11 2014

Fall-ing In Love With Philly Dining

A Season Full Of Brasserie Délices, Tasty Sandwiches, Thai Tacos & More In Philadelphia

With autumn comes falling temperatures, changing leaves and, in Philadelphia, a harvest of new restaurants. In the coming months, diners can enjoy French fare at the FringeArts building, Vietnamese-Italian hoagies, Japanese barbecue and hummus like no other. Here are just some of the new flavors around town this fall:

Buzzed-About Eateries:

  • Israeli food takes the plate at Michael Solomonov and Steven Cook’s hummusiya Dizengoff. The Center City West quick stop focuses on rotating hummus variations (with ground lamb; with tomato pepper salad and Sephardic slow-cooked egg) served in platters of fresh-baked pita, salads and Israeli-style pickles. 1625 Sansom Street,
...
Sep 10 2014

What's Impressive About Philadelphia's Impressionism Collections?

A Major Paul Durand-Ruel Exhibit At The Philadelphia Museum of Art In 2015, Plus Works By Monet, Renoir, Sisley, Cassatt & Others Around Town

In summer 2015, after stints at the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris and the National Gallery in London, an even larger version of the Discovering the Impressionists: Paul Durand-Ruel and the New Painting exhibition will make its way to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for its only U.S. showing. On display from June through September 2015, this groundbreaking exhibit will showcase more than 80 impressionist works by some of the genre’s most significant artists: Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Édouard Manet, Edgar Degas and Alfred Sisley, all supported by the Parisian art dealer Durand-Ruel. While Discovering the Impressionists is

...
Sep 9 2014

VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ & Zipcar Partner To Make Travel To & Through The Region Easy & Convenient

Partnership Includes Advertising, Web & Social Media Promotion, Events & More

VISIT PHILADELPHIA has teamed up with Zipcar to encourage quick and easy trips—Ziptrips—to the Philadelphia suburbs. Running now through spring 2015 as part of VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s Towns of the Philadelphia Countryside campaign, the partnership includes advertising, web promotion, social media, events and giveaways—all touting the ease and excitement that comes with exploring the Philadelphia region.

“Our Towns of the Philadelphia Countryside campaign promotes 15 charming towns within an hour drive or train ride of Center City, so partnering with Zipcar makes perfect sense for us,” says Meryl Levitz, president & CEO, VISIT PHILADELPHIA. “Our website features themed

...
Sep 4 2014

Fritz Smith Joins VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ Staff

Smith Fills New Role As Vice President Of Hotel Initiatives

VISIT PHILADELPHIA announced today that Fritz Smith will take a new position as vice president of hotel initiatives, starting this fall. In this role, Smith will lead the direction and management of strategic hotel programs and packages; oversee visitor, hotel, economic impact and program research; manage VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s AAA/CAA marketing program; and serve as the company liaison for select regional, state and national relationships.

“We created this new role as a result of the environment we’re working in—heavy competition, limited funding, tough projections for the upcoming years and an evolving visitor base as a new generation drives shifts in

...
Aug 19 2014

The Votes Are In: Dancer On Art Museum Steps Wins VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ Photo Contest

Vikki Sloviter Of Wynnewood Snapped The Winning Photo, To Appear On A Phillyosophy Billboard This Fall

Philadelphia residents and fans have cast their votes and selected the winner of VISIT PHILADELPHIA’s Phillyosophy® billboard contest. The winning photo by Wynnewood’s Vikki Sloviter features a dancer on the top of the iconic Philadelphia Museum of Art steps. Sloviter’s photo will appear on I-95 billboard this fall.

“As a Philly native and lifelong supporter of the arts, especially ballet, I thought my photo of a dancer at the top of the Art Museum steps, with the iconic William Penn statue on City Hall in the background, would be a great way to welcome visitors to and help promote the

...
Aug 1 2014

Deal Alert: 19 Discount Ticket Offers Available At Philly Theaters For The Fall Season & Beyond

Walnut, Wilma, Kimmel, Curtis & Many Others Offer Free & Low-Cost Performances

The curtain will rise on the 2015 performing arts season in Philadelphia soon, and budget-conscious theater and music lovers have reason to rejoice thanks to the many low-cost tickets options available to them. The award-winning Wilma Theatre introduces its new WynTix program, which offers tickets to all productions for just $25 each. At the Curtis Institute of Music, up-and-coming classical music stars deliver free performances three nights a week. And each Thursday, the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance continues to send out its popular FunSavers email, loaded with half-price tickets for the coming week’s shows and exhibitions.

Here are some money-saving

...
Aug 1 2014

20+ Lists You Didn't Know Philly Made This Year

Budget Travel, USA Today, Paste Magazine, AARP & The Huffington Post Think Philly Is Tops

So far this year, Philadelphia has appeared on many national best-of lists.

“This good press is a good example of the city’s momentum. It goes with the story that’s unfolding right now—the new restaurants, more outdoor dining, throngs of people on Independence Mall and all over the city, more people visiting and visiting for longer periods of time,” said Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of VISIT PHILADELPHIA™. “Philadelphia is a premier destination, and the place to be. VISIT PHILADELPHIA is happy to be the promotion agency for a city that over-delivers.”

Here’s just a sample of what people have been

...
Jul 30 2014

Philly's Hotel Bars: Check Out The Scene & The Happy Hours

The Sonesta’s Art Bar Joins Philadelphia’s Collection Of Stylish Hotel Bars

The Sonesta Philadelphia’s Art Bar opened in July 2014, joining the ranks of cool hotel bars in a city that knows its cool bars. With a stylish interior and an art program courtesy of The Center for Emerging Visual Artists, Art Bar welcomes guests with craft cocktails, beers and wines that complement its modern décor.

The Sonesta isn’t the only property raising the bar. It seems Philadelphia’s hotels are vying for the top bar scene, which means locals and out-of-towners win. On the menu: craft beers, fantastic wines, inventive drinks and delicious bites, plus distinguishing features (skyline views, outdoor dining,

...
Jul 22 2014

VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ Launches Summer Photo Contest

Contest Invites Shutterbugs To Be Part Of Phillyosophy Campaign

Have a great Philly photo, or think you can capture one? It could show up on a Phillyosophy® billboard on I-95 as part of a contest VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ is conducting to engage Philadelphia fans and give them a chance to show off the city they love.

From July 22 through August 3, shutterbugs can go to facebook.com/visitphilly or visitphilly.com/contest, choose one of six Phillyosophy lines and then upload a photo of their own that goes well with the line of their choice. To select the finalists, VISIT PHILADELPHIA will choose the most compelling photos that pair best with the

...
Jul 7 2014

African Fare Awakens Philadelphia's Palate

Authentic Dishes Around The City Allow Diners To Savor African Flavors

The growing popularity of culinary and travel shows have inspired Americans to explore the countries of their ancestral heritage and the cultural traditions of their neighbors. Philadelphia and The Countryside adds to this global sense of community with a number of pan-African restaurants, enabling epicureans to use their plate as a passport to dine across the Diaspora. Here’s a look:

West Philadelphia:

  • A local institution, Abyssinia is a hit with vegetarians and the meat-eaters in their lives. Authentic Eritrean/Ethiopian preparations of lentils, beans, chicken, beef and lamb dishes wonderfully mix and match with the bar’s assortment of beers.
...
Jul 7 2014

Philadelphia's Exceptional Collections

From Priceless Works Of Art To Literary Masterpieces, Some Of The World’s Most Amazing Collections Live In Philadelphia

Fascinated with fine art? Curious about cars? Want to know more about mummies? Visitors to Philadelphia can see dozens of collections large and small—from rare books to Renoir masterpieces to throwback toys—at some of city’s most renowned museums. The result of a penchant for collecting through Colonial, Victorian and more modern times, each one of the depositories listed below offers great artistic, historic and/or cultural value, and all are open to the public.

Artistic Wonders:

  • More than 200 galleries and 226,000 works comprise the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA), one of the largest museums in the United States. Inside
...
Jun 15 2014

Philly Restaurants Shine This Summer

Bright New Concepts Light Up The Region’s Dining Scene

Just when it seems like they’ve thought of everything, Philly chefs have gone and cooked up some brilliant new ideas. This summer brings a fresh batch of restaurants that exemplify the excitement and innovation of the regional dining scene. From a quick-service eatery specializing in sushi-esque burritos to a hearth-based bistro to the area’s first vegan bar to a completely gluten-free café, here’s a look at some of the newest additions:

Notable New Entrées:

  • Passyunk Avenue adds another fine dining establishment to its files with Townsend Wentz’s eponymous bistro Townsend. The Lacroix-trained chef’s modern French sensibilities shine in dishes
...
Jun 2 2014

VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ Encourages Visits To The "Towns Of The Philadelphia Countryside"

New Marketing Effort Connects Residents & Visitors To 15 Towns

VISIT PHILADELPHIA™ just made it easier to explore 15 quaint towns and neighborhoods in the five-county region. A new marketing effort, entitled Towns of the Philadelphia Countryside, reveals the treasures found throughout Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties. The campaign encourages locals and visitors to explore the towns’ storied streets, boundless recreational opportunities, lush gardens, authentic historic sites, treasure-filled museums, buzzed-about restaurants, lauded wineries and breweries, independent shops and not-to-be-missed festivals. The program's main component is a highly visual and interactive towns section on visitphilly.com/towns, which serves as the call to action for advertising, public relations and social

...