BIVB Membership Event – Market Insights Presentation

Posted on December 7, 2015

As part of the 2015 BIVB Annual Meeting and Membership presentation held on December 4, 2015, Chris Kam, Senior Director, Market Insights, delivered a presentation featuring trends and analysis of market factors affecting Hawaii Island.

Download (PDF, 2.57MB)

For more research and trend analysis, visit Market Insights Online at http://www.hvcb.org/insights.

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Hawaii Island Special Offers

Posted on September 16, 2015

Aloha,

Hawaii Island’s marketing plan includes an ongoing multi-faceted online advertising campaign. One aspect of the online campaign places banner ads that click through to areas of our website where we feature partner offers with direct links to your website. The Hawaii Island Special Offers page targets all consumers and the Kamaaina Special Offers page targets Hawaii residents.

Send your offer(s) to Missy Kaleohano (missy@hvcb.org) with copy to Donna Kimura (dkimura@hvcb.org) by Wednesday, September 23, 2015. Instructions are basically the same for both but please identify them separately using the following format:

Special Offers
* Company Name
* Subhead
* Offer copy (50 words, including website or phone number for reservations or more information, and book by or offer end date). Let us know if you prefer to re-use or refresh your offer and image currently listed on the Special Offers page (http://www.gohawaii.com/hawaii-island/special-offers), and forward any revisions, such as a change to the offer expiration date.
* URL (that links to your offer booking page)
* Image (90 x 68 px)

Kamaaina Offers
* Company Name
* Subhead
* Offer copy (50 words, including website or phone number for reservations or more information, and book by or offer end date). Please let us know if you prefer to re-use or refresh your offer and image currently listed on the Kamaaina Special Offers page (http://www.gohawaii.com/HIKamaaina), and forward any revisions, such as a change to the offer expiration date.
* URL (that links to your offer or booking page)
* Image (90 x 68 px)
* If you prefer not to publish your kamaaina offers online, we recommend you submit 50 words of general copy (no price point mentioned), and have your call-to-action be via telephone.

We encourage you to take advantage of these campaigns to get additional exposure for your business at no cost.

Mahalo,

Ross Birch
Executive Director
Big Island Visitors Bureau

Note: We reserve the right to select and edit and all submissions.

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Hawaii Island Special Offers Online Campaign

Posted on June 24, 2014

Aloha,

As part of our Fall 2014 online campaign, Hawaii, the Big Island will be placing banner ads that point visitors to a Hawaii Island Special Offers page featuring partner offers with direct links to your website. You have an opportunity to promote your company’s offer for FREE.

Please send your Fall offers to June Kaneshiro at MVNP (jkaneshiro@mvnp.com) by Tuesday, July 15, 2014. Please include:

  • Company Name
  • Subhead
  • Offer Copy (50 words, including website or phone number for reservations or more information, and book by or offer end date). If you prefer to re-use or refresh your offer and image currently listed on the Special Offers page (gohawaii.com/hawaii-island/special-offers), please advise June and forward any revisions, such as a change to the offer expiration date.
  • URL (that links to your offer or booking page)*
  • Image (90 x 68 px)

We look forward to receiving your offer by Tuesday, July 15.

Mahalo,

Ross Birch
Executive Director

Note: We reserve the right to select and edit any and all submissions.

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Retreat Center Accommodations – 50% Off

Posted on June 5, 2014

kalani_smDiscover the magic of Kalani! We are offering 50% off our lodge rooms with private bath, if you mention code HVCB14.

Kalani is Hawaii’s largest retreat center, one of the best-loved centers in the world for more than 35 years. Visitors from around the world come for our personal and group yoga retreats and our colorful mix of performing arts, nature, adventure, and diverse programming. Life is exuberant on Kalani’s 120 acres of organic agriculture, preserved heritage, and retreat accommodations. Exuberant in fiery lava, invigorating ocean, tropical foliage, and exuberant too with people celebrating the spirit of aloha.

Visit our tropical conservation coast and center yourself at the haven Shiva Rea calls “one of the most potent and nurturing retreat centers in the world.” Join us for one of our world-class retreats, wellness packages, or an adventurous getaway. By staying with us, you also make a difference – as a 501c3, all proceeds support education, recreation, and Hawaiian culture preservation on Hawaii Island.

Offer subject to availability. Must complete stay by December 15th, 2014. Certain conditions may apply.

Contact reservations@kalani.com.

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Hawaii Island Kamaaina Special Offers

Posted on May 9, 2014

Aloha,

We are pleased to share that BIVB is partnering with KITV4 on a kamaaina campaign May – June 2014. The campaign includes commercials that will air May 27 – June 30; digital components including :15 pre-roll and banner ads; and a promotional contest that will run for 5 weeks with KITV4 and MeTV-produced spots and weekly Facebook posts.

All advertising for this campaign will point to a Kamaaina Special Offers landing page with copy/links provided by your company. Listing your offer/link is free.

Please send your kamaaina offers to June Kaneshiro at MVNP (jkaneshiro@mvnp.com) by Thursday, May 15, 2014. Please include:

  • Company Name
  • Subhead
  • Offer Copy (50 words)*
  • Book by or Offer end Date
  • URL (that links to your offer)*
  • Image (that links to your offer), 90 x 68 px

We look forward to receiving your offer soon!

Mahalo,

Ross Birch
Executive Director

*We understand that some of you may prefer not to “publish” your kamaaina offers. In those instances, feel free to provide copy and a call-to-action reservations number/email address.

Note: We reserve the right to select and edit any and all submissions.

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Big Island Visitors Bureau Newsletter July 2013

Posted on July 19, 2013

ross_birchAloha,

As my transition to the helm of the Big Island Visitors Bureau (BIVB) began in April, we had already received reports that there would be a reduction in airline seats to Hawaii Island. Soon after, the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT) reduced its projections for total visitor arrival growth to the Hawaiian Islands. As anticipated, DBEDT primarily attributed this to the reduction in air seats from the U.S. Mainland to Hawaii.

It was clear we needed to make some adjustments to our marketing strategy. BIVB was already making headway in key West Coast markets and continued that push. I believe this adjustment drove more demand for the destination and ultimately helped bolster our visitor numbers in May.

As such, I was pleased to see the Hawaii Tourism Authority’s (HTA) May statistics revealed year-over-year growth for Hawaii Island in both arrivals and daily spending. Arrivals increased by 4.4% to 109,022 visitors to Hawaii Island. Additionally, daily spending grew by 15.2% to $179 per person, which contributed to an increase of 17.4% in total visitor expenditures to $125.6 million for Hawaii Island. Our foresight and planning earlier this year paid off and we hope to continue the push for strong numbers.

I would like to thank the Hawaii Island partners and stakeholders for your continued support. We have an exciting remainder of the year ahead of us.

Mahalo,

Ross Birch
Executive Director

Follow Google Trekker on Hawaii Island

BIVB is proud that Hawaii Island is the launching point for the Google Maps’ first-of-its-kind partnership with HVCB, which is using Google’s Street View Trekker equipment to map the interior of the Hawaiian Islands. The Google Trekker is capturing 360-degree images of Hawaii Island’s inspiring Na Ala Hele hiking trails in the first phase of the project. Hawaii Forest and Trail, enlisted to help HVCB map more than 20 public access trails on Hawaii Island, is tracking its progress on its blog. HVCB will also be sharing updates on its So Much More Hawaii Blog. At the same time, BIVB will be sharing those updates on its social media channels and will be looking for opportunities to share the experience with visiting media. For more information, view the HVCB press release on the partnership.

Individual Media Visits

The BIVB News Bureau continues to qualify and provide travel assistance to targeted media. The following writers and bloggers recently visited or will be traveling to Hawaii Island to gather destination and partner information, story angles and content that will be shared with their readers and viewers via upcoming editorial coverage.

  • LiLing Pang/Trekaroo.com – July 3-7
  • Eric Lindberg/AAA Encompass – August 15-19

In the News

Hawaii Island has recently been featured in some of the top consumer and meetings trade media as a result of BIVB’s media outreach and assistance. Here are a few links to generated coverage:

Public Relations

Satellite Media Tour – “Last Minute Summer Travel” with Emily Kaufman

BIVB partnered with travel expert Emily Kaufman to participate in a satellite media tour on July 2 focused on “Last Minute Summer Travel.” Emily promoted Hawaii, the Big Island as an easily accessible, family-friendly destination offering great values and inspiring opportunities for adventure travelers. To date, the interview has aired in more than 200 markets from Washington, D.C. to San Diego, California and reached a total broadcast audience of approximately 8.2 million. View a clip from one of the live interviews for ABC15 in Phoenix, Arizona.

VirtualTourist – 8th Wonder of the World Contest

BIVB entered Hawaii Island’s Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park in the “8th Wonder of the World” social media contest. Voting is just a click away as no registration is required. The contest is open from now until September 30, so you can vote for the Hawaii Island sacred park once a day! The winning entry will be featured on VirtualTourist’s website and Facebook page. For more information and to vote, visit www.virtualtourist.com/8thwonder.

Media Blitz to New York City
In September, BIVB will be conducting a media blitz to the New York City area. BIVB is welcoming up to three partners to participate in the trip (only one representative per partner will be allowed). During the blitz, the Hawaii delegation, including one BIVB public relations representative, will have the opportunity to discuss Hawaii Island story ideas with top national and regional broadcast, print and online media. Media blitzes are one of the most effective ways to communicate our destination brand with influential media contacts. More information and the call for participants will be available soon.

Leisure Sales

The BIVB sales team has been busy keeping Hawaii Island top of mind amongst travel suppliers in key markets, in addition to working on new initiatives to build bookings for the destination. Following are the major events and initiatives BIVB participated in recently:

Vacation.com’s 15th International Conference and Tradeshow:

From June 13-14, BIVB and the Island Chapters participated in the International Conference and Tradeshow in Orlando, Florida. With a record high attendance of 1,300 travel agents, great interest was shown in Hawaii and cruise ship market opportunities. In addition, meetings and supplier seminars provided valuable insight and networking. Vacation.com’s 2014 International Conference and Tradeshow will be held in Las Vegas.

NACTA Training:
On June 17, BIVB and fellow island chapters gave an educational presentation to the South Florida Chapter of the National Association of Career Travel Agents in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The NACTA staff is involved in pushing Hawaii tours with top-level leaders based in Florida. The training was a great opportunity to push online Hawaii destination resources. Overall, BIVB learned that NACTA agents are seeing more Hawaii vacations originating from Florida as visitors seek alternatives to the Caribbean.

BIVB Webinar:

On June 27, about 90 U.S. retail travel agents attended BIVB’s webinar, “Discovering Outdoor Adventures on Hawaii Island.” The webinar featured various land adventures available to our visitors from ziplining to hiking. Hawaii Forest & Trail provided additional information on ecotourism, science and astronomy. The webinar database will be used for future marketing and educational initiatives.

International Leisure Sales

Hawaii Tourism Japan & Island Chapter Sales Blitz:

From June 24 to 28, BIVB and the Island Chapters traveled to Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka to meet with major wholesale companies’ pre-planning divisions. Blitz meetings took place with JTB World Vacations, Jalpak, HIS, Hankyu, R&C, and ANA Sales in each city as well as with OHPC, HPCE, JATA and Rakuten. Discussions took place on how to better market the Hawaiian Islands and create a higher demand for the destination. The Island Chapters will return in June 2014 along with a MICE island sales blitz in April 2014.

2013 Sales Calendar of Events

  • July 18: Leisure Travel Agents – Virtuoso Webinar
  • Aug. 12-14: NTA Hawaii Island Pre Fam
  • Aug. 14-18: NTA CONTACT 2013 – Hawaii Island
  • Aug 18-20: NACTA Post CONTACT 2013 Hawaii Island Fam
  • Aug 22-23: HTA Annual Tourism Conference – Honolulu
  • Aug 26-30: Apple Vacations Travel Agent Fam
  • Aug. 31-Sept. 2: Hawaii Tourism Europe’s Product Managers Fam
  • Sept. 16-18: Successful Meetings – Maui
  • Sept. 18-20: Successful Meetings Post Fam
  • Sept. 29-Oct. 9: Aloha Up N Over (Europe)
  • Oct. 11: Leisure Travel Agents – BIVB Mailpound Webinar
  • Oct. 15-17: IMEX (Las Vegas)
  • Oct. 30-Nov 4: NorCal ASTA2013 Hawaii Product Conference & Fam
  • Nov. 29-Dec. 6: Hawaii Island Destination Specialist Program
  • Nov. 1-3: Meeting Focus LIVE Hawaii Island Fam
  • Nov. 3-6: Meeting Focus Live! Hawaii
  • Nov. 13: PAICE – New Zealand
  • Nov. 14-16: Signature Travel 2013 Conference – Las Vegas
  • Nov. 17-29: FICP
  • Dec. 1-4: Hawaii Travel Exchange (Kauai)
  • Dec 4-7: Hawaii Travel Exchange Hawaii Island Post Fam

Social Media

Aloha Friday Facebook Chat

Wendi Vasconcellos, director of sales for Aston Hotels & Resorts on Hawaii Island, was our featured destination expert during BIVB’s live Facebook Chat on Friday, July 12. The chat, moderated by BIVB’s public relations team, takes place the second Friday of each month on the BIVB’s Facebook page. The team also takes questions and shares insights via Twitter using hashtag #hawaiichat. Click here to see the archive, which serves as a great resource for our visitors.

Our next Facebook chat on August 9 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. HST will feature Paradise Helicopter’s Rob Payesco. We encourage all partners to join in the conversation!

Consumer Calendar of Events

A great online resource for planning upcoming visits and a look at what’s ahead, click here for BIVB’s ongoing calendar of events.

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Hawaii Island Fall 2013 Special Offers Request

Posted on July 3, 2013

As part of our online promotions, the Big Island Visitors Bureau is placing banner ads pointing visitors to a Hawaii Island Special Offers page featuring member offers with direct links to your website.  You have an opportunity to promote your company’s offer for FREE during this promotion which runs August 1 through October 31, 2013.

Just send the following information by Thursday, July 18, 2013 to Marlene Teramae: mteramae@mvnp.com.

  • Company Name
  • Subhead
  • Offer Copy (50 words)
  • URL – that links to offer
  • Image (90×68 px)

If you’d like to use the same copy, URL and image from your Spring 2013 offer, please indicate this in your email to mteramae@mvnp.com.

Note:  We reserve the right to select and edit any and all submissions.

We look forward to receiving your offer by July 18th!

Mahalo,
Ross Birch
Executive Director

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BIVB Newsletter May 2013

Posted on June 3, 2013

georgeAloha kakou!

If someone told be back in 1966 when I was a teenage bellman at the Naniloa Hotel in Hilo that I would one day be retiring as the leader in promoting my hometown and the best island destination in the world, I wouldn’t have believed it. Looking back on my career, I can honestly say I had the time of my life and leave the Big Island Visitors Bureau (BIVB) proudly knowing we did some fantastic work for the island during my
24 years here.

I joined the BIVB in 1989 as director of sales and marketing and had the honor of becoming executive director in 2000. As a team, we partnered with the Hawaii Tourism Authority and Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau to bring the airlines back to Hawaii Island, helped build the cruise ship industry, and worked closely with the mayor and County of Hawaii to ensure they understood the importance of tourism to our island home. There isn’t enough space to list all of our accomplishments.

While this resulted in millions of satisfied travelers visiting Hawaii Island and pumping billions of dollars into our local economy, it also meant our residents had jobs and were able to live the American dream of prosperity. We worked hard to provide employment opportunities and make a difference in our communities through tourism.

There are many mentors, colleagues, friends, and family members I’d like to thank dearly for my success and they know who they are. Without the support of all of you, our industry partners, none of this would have been possible. I’ve always believed in surrounding myself with smart, passionate, thoughtful and resourceful people and that was truly one of the best decisions I made.

I also couldn’t be prouder to see Ross Birch succeed me as executive director. Most people know him as a “golf guy,” but I can assure you he has a great business sense, impressive track record of accomplishments himself, and knows Hawaii Island inside and out. He will do great things for our island and I leave with a happy heart knowing that he’s taking the lead.

What’s next for me? Hopefully spending more time in the great outdoors birdwatching, hiking, and stand up paddleboarding. Spend more time with my three kids and wife, Angie, who have made tremendous sacrifices and supported me every step of the way. And I also plan to do a little consulting work to keep busy and in touch with the visitor industry.

If there are any words of advice I may impart – have a vision, be grounded and always remember who you are and where you came from, maintain your life balance, stay in touch with friends, and have a good conscious. I’ll see you around the Big Island!

Mahalo nui loa,

George Applegate
Executive Director

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Ross Birch Appointed BIVB Executive Director

Bringing with him 23 years of hospitality experience on Hawaii Island, Ross Birch has been named BIVB executive director. He will be responsible for overseeing our marketing and associated programs impacting the island’s visitor industry. Serving as the lead liaison between the island’s stakeholders and Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB), he will also oversee the development of relationships with community leaders, government officials and visitor industry marketing partners.

Most recently, he was the general manager of Makalei Golf Club where he oversaw all facets of the club including marketing and operations of the 18-hole golf course and its facilities. Prior to that he was president of Hawaii Golf Connection, a group travel company that assists its members with getting to Hawaii Island. Birch also held positions as the director of golf sales and retail for Mauna Lani Resort and the head golf professional at Waikoloa Beach Resort. He has served on BIVB’s Board of Directors for 10 of the last 13 years, with four years spent on the Board’s Executive Committee as marketing committee chair, Board chair and immediate past chair.

Originally from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Birch relocated to Hawaii Island in 1990. He is an active Class A Member of the PGA of America and serves on the marketing committee of the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce. Birch and his wife, Tammie, reside in Honokaa and have three sons.

Notice of Intermittent Road Closure

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has scheduled an intermittent road closure on Kawaihae Road (Highway 19) between mile markers 58 and 59 that will occur from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Monday, June 17. Please plan ahead for potential traffic delays during this time. Click here for the map and visit this link for more information.

Individual Media Visits

The BIVB News Bureau continues to qualify and provide travel assistance to targeted media. The following writers and production crews recently visited or will be traveling to Hawaii Island to gather destination and partner information, story angles and content that will be shared with their readers and viewers via upcoming editorial coverage.

  • Jimmy Im/Premier Traveler, May 15-19
  • ABC’s “Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin,” May 30 – June 1
  • Shane Nelson/Travel Weekly, May 31 – June 3

In the News

Hawaii Island has recently been featured in some of the top consumer and trade media as a result of BIVB’s media outreach and assistance. Here are a few links to generated coverage:

Public Relations

TODAY Show Visits Hawaii Island

NBC’s TODAY show launched its Great American Adventure with a live broadcast on Oahu on Monday, May 20. Through the HVCB, a TODAY crew visited Hawaii Island on May 13 and filmed at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. As part of the special Hawaii show, our destination was showcased in the “This is Hawaii” segment which introduced all of the islands and highlighted the state’s fire, earth, sky, and water attributes. Mahalo to Jessica Ferracane and Ranger Kupono in assisting with the production! Click here to watch the clip.

Village Burger featured on USA Today

BIVB’s PR team helped to promote Joe and Doris Lindner’s special visit to Village Burger on April 26. Upon arrival, Ross Birch and Village Burger’s Edwin Goto greeted the Lindner family, commemorating the end of their journey to try every burger listed on America’s “51 Great Burger Joints” featured by USA Today. The celebratory event was pitched to national media, resulting in a follow-up piece by Jayne Clark of USA Today. Click here to read the story.

Leisure Sales

The BIVB sales team has been busy keeping Hawaii Island top of mind amongst travel suppliers in key markets, in addition to working on new initiatives to build bookings for the destination. Following are the major events and initiatives BIVB participated in over the past two months:

Mailpound Hawaii Coffee Break Webinar

The Natural Wonders of Hawaii, the Big Island was the topic for a recent webinar featuring Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The webinar attracted 100 travel agent participants who were educated on Hawaii Island’s brand, cultural and historical value, and visitor highlights.

HVCB East Coast Road Show Series

The road show took the BIVB to Washington DC, Philadelphia, New York, Boston, and Toronto where the team reached 500 retail travel agents during tradeshows and island presentations.

Outrigger Travel Agent Alii Weekend FAM

BIVB coordinated an on-island destination training program with the Outrigger Hawaii Specialist Program for 20 retail agents and staff.

Las Vegas Home Based Travel Agent Forum

An estimated 2,000 home based travel professionals and 250 travel suppliers were in attendance at the annual tradeshow and conference in Las Vegas. BIVB and the other Island Chapters conducted a three-hour Ke Kula O Hawaii Training, with 50 minutes dedicated to Hawaii Island, for 275 seminar attendees.

Prestige Travel & AAA Reservations Training

Following the Home Based Travel Agent Forum, the Island Chapters including BIVB leveraged their presence in Las Vegas to conduct additional training and presentations for Prestige Travel and AAA. In addition to hosting an agent training for representatives from the top Hawaii producing Las Vegas area travel agencies, the Hawaiian Islands participated in the Prestige Travel Hawaii Consumer Night, a trade show and presentation for 65 targeted Hawaii consumers. BIVB also trained approximately 40 reservations staff at the new AAA Las Vegas Call Center which services Northern California, Nevada, and Utah.

Hawaii Island Destination Specialist Program

In partnership with Blue Sky Tours, BIVB brought 20 travel agents and sales staff to Hawaii Island for a six-day program designed to showcase the diversity of the island and unique selling points.

International Leisure Sales

Hawaii Tourism Korea (HTK) Receptive Tour Operators FAM

BIVB welcomed 12 VIP receptive tour operators and Hawaii Tourism Korea staff members to Hawaii Island from April 2-5 in an effort to help them gain a better understanding of our destination’s sense of place as they develop their on-island programs and other marketing opportunities to promote travel to Hawaii, the Big Island and the rest of the Hawaiian Islands.

Hawaii Tourism Europe Scandinavia FAM

East and West Hawaii were featured on a recent FAM tour on April 20 for 10 tour operators from Scandinavia coordinated in partnership with Hawaii Tourism Europe. The tour operators, all first time visitors to Hawaii Island, enjoyed exploring both sides of the island including a visit to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Meetings, Conventions & Incentive Sales

BIVB hosted a FAM Tour of Hawaii Island from April 11-13 for the Meet Hawaii team which included members from the Hawaii Convention Center and Brian Lynx, Vice President of Sales for the Hawaii Tourism Authority. The group conducted site tours of West Hawaii hotels including the Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, Royal Kona Resort, Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Fairmont Orchid Hawaii, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, Hilton Waikoloa Village and Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. BIVB also coordinated a tradeshow to showcase the island’s activity vendors and their products. Participants included Speedi Shuttle, Blue Hawaiian Helicopters, Ocean Sports, Island Breeze, Dolphin Quest, Mountain Thunder, Hawaii Island Retreat, Hawaii Forest & Trail, Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods, Puako Makai Watch. The FAM concluded with an inspiring North Kohala adventure starting with a helicopter ride to Mokulani Kila (North Kohala) followed by a waterfalls hike.

The Optical Society (OSA) held two group programs on Hawaii Island in April including the Optics in the Life Sciences Congress April 14-18, 2013 with 275 attendees and Apirl 21-25, 2013 with 111 in attendance. Welcome banners graced our airport welcoming the group to our island along with welcome treats.

On May 22, the American Farm Bureau Federation took a day trip to the Island, the group’s only neighbor island stop during their visit to Oahu. The Hawaii Convention Center and BIVB teamed up to secure the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual convention in 2019 for its 100th anniversary and is expected to bring between 6,000 to 8,000 attendees. Hawaii Island will likely receive pre or post agriculture visit extensions when the group arrives in 2019.

2013 Sales Calendar of Events

  • May 21-31: HTA Asia 4th Asia Travel Mission – Busan, Seoul, Qingdoa, Taipei
  • June 1-2: Sunset Magazine Celebration Weekend – Menlo Park, CA
  • June 8-12: Pow Wow – Las Vegas, NV
  • June 10-14: Vacation.Com International Conference – Orlando, FL
  • June 17: NACTA Hawaii Evening Travel Agent Training – Ft. Lauderdale, FL
  • June 24-28: HTJ Island Chapters Sales Blitz – Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka
  • June 28: Leisure Travel Agents – BIVB Mailpound Webinar
  • July 18: Leisure Travel Agents – Virtuoso Webinar
  • July 22-26: BIVB Showcase / Wholesale Training – Canada
  • Aug. 12-14: NTA Hawaii Island Pre Fam
  • Aug. 14-18: NTA CONTACT 2013 – Hawaii Island
  • Aug. 19-23: HTA Tourism Conference – Honolulu
  • Sept. 16-18: Successful Meetings
  • Sept. 18-20: Successful Meetings Post Fam
  • Sept. tba: BIVB Showcase / Wholesale Training – US West
  • Sept. 29-Oct. 9: Aloha Up N Over
  • Oct. 11: Leisure Travel Agents – BIVB Mailpound Webinar
  • Oct. 15-17: IMEX
  • Oct. 30-Nov. 4: NorCal ASTA Hawaii Product Seminar – Hawaii Island
  • Nov. 29-Dec. 6: Hawaii Island Destination Specialist Program
  • Nov. 1-3: Meeting Focus LIVE Hawaii Island Fam
  • Nov. 3-6: Meeting Focus Live! Hawaii
  • Nov. 13: PAICE
  • Nov. 14-16: Signature Travel 2013 Conference – Las Vegas
  • Nov. 17-29: FICP
  • Dec. 1-7: Hawaii Travel Exchange (Kauai) / Post Fam (Hawaii Island)

Talk Story Around Hawaii Island

In May, BIVB conducted a “Talk Story” event with Casey Ballao of Hulihee Palace. This on-going Hawaii Island series provides stakeholders with educational information that will assist in promoting the destination.

Please mark your calendars for the next “Talk Story” events:

  • July 19: Julie Callahan, Volcano Arts Center
  • September 20: Kuulei Keakealani, Kaupulehua Interpretive Center at Kalaemano, Hualalai Resort

Social Media

Aloha Friday Facebook Chat

Hilo Hattie’s Hawaii Island Manager Randy Repp was our featured destination expert during BIVB’s live Facebook Chat on Friday, May 10. The chat, moderated by BIVB’s public relations team, takes place the second Friday of each month on the BIVB’s Facebook page. The team also takes questions and shares insights via Twitter using hashtag #hawaiichat. Click here to see the archive, which serves as a great resource for our visitors.

Our next Facebook chat on June 14 from 10:00-11:00 a.m. HST will feature Margo Mau Bunnell, sales and operations manager for Queens’ MarketPlace. We encourage all partners to join in the conversation and help share the story of Hawaii Island!

Consumer Calendar of Events
A great online resource for planning upcoming visits and a look at what’s ahead, click here for BIVB’s ongoing calendar of events.

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Big Island Visitors Bureau Newsletter April 2013

Posted on April 15, 2013

georgeAloha,
Hawaii Island continues to see steady growth in both visitor arrivals and spending, as reported by the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) for the month of February, year over year.  During this time, arrivals increased 8.2% to 130,664 visitors. In addition, daily spending grew by 9.9% to $172 per person, which contributed to an increase of 12% in total visitor expenditures to $163.2 million.

HTA also announced its selection of 40 community-based projects statewide that will receive assistance in 2013 through its Natural Resources Program and Kukulu Ola – Living Hawaiian Cultural Program. These programs help enhance the overall visitor experience. Hawaii Island initiatives include Hawaii Ecotourism Association’s “Moving the HEA Certification Program Forward” to increase the use of best practices by marine tour operators, Hui Aloha Kiholo’s “Kiholo Bay Interpretive Center Enhancements”, Ka Ahahui o Ka Nahelehele’s “Ouli Park Management Planning and Development” at the gateway of Waimea, the creation of two interpretive signs at Pali o Kulani Scenic Point in Kau, University of Hawaii’s “Mitigating the Impacts of Stinging Ants at Hilo Beach parks and Panaewa Zoo”, Volcano Art Center’s “Volcano Rainforest Restoration & Education”, MAMo: Maoli Arts Month 2013, and Hula Enrichment Programming at Imiloa Astronomy Center. The complete list can be downloaded here.

Mahalo,

George Applegate
Executive Director

__________________________________________________________________________________________
Keck Week 2013
BIVB assisted HVCB to reach the meetings market by promoting the 20th anniversary of the W.M. Keck Observatory. Megan Rowe of MeetingsNet and Ian O’Neill of Discovery News were hosted from March 13 to 17. The journalists participated in several of the Keck Week 2013 events and also explored other MCI and tech-related assets and resources on Hawaii Island. As a result, the following stories have already been produced on Discovery News that position Hawaii Island and the state as a serious place for business:

Mahalo to the partners who took part in these visits including the W.M. Keck Observatory, University of Hawaii’s Institute for Astronomy, Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa, and The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii.

Individual Media Visits

The BIVB News Bureau continues to remain busy vetting and providing travel assistance to qualified media. The following writers recently visited or will be traveling to Hawaii Island to gather destination and partner information, story angles and content that will be shared with their readers via upcoming editorial coverage.

  • Jeff Wise/My Ford Magazine/Travel + Leisure, April 1-6
  • Michelle Hopkins/Glacier Media Network, April 21-24
  • Jimmy Im/BlackBook Magazine, May 15-19

In the News

 Hawaii Island has recently been featured in some of the top consumer and trade media as a result of BIVB’s media outreach and assistance. Here are a few links to generated coverage:

Leisure Sales

The BIVB sales team has been busy keeping Hawaii Island top of mind amongst travel suppliers in key markets, in addition to working on new initiatives to build bookings for the destination.

In March, BIVB partnered with All About Hawaii and conducted a presentation to 90 travel agents. BIVB showcased the unique aspects of Hawaii Island, provided destination updates and highlighted travel agent sales resources. In partnership with Travel Weekly, Hawaii Island was featured in an educational webinar in which 380 travel agents participated.

Public Relations 

Joe Lindner – 51 Great Burger Joints  

Over the past two years, Joe and Doris Lindner of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina have been on a mission to try every restaurant and burger highlighted on USA Today’s list of “51 Great Burger Joints” across America. The couple will be visiting Hawaii Island this month and plan to end their journey at Village Burger in Waimea, the last stop on their list. BIVB is celebrating the occasion with Chef/Owner Edwin Goto during an event on April 26 that will include special proclamations and island hospitality.

Talk Story Around Hawaii Island

On March 22, BIVB conducted a “Talk Story” event with Ranger Greg Cunningham who shared great information and led a cultural walk covering the three heiau: Puukohola, Mailekini, and Hale o Kapuni. Mahalo to The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii Forest & Trail, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, Outrigger Royal  Sea Cliff, Hilton Waikoloa Village and Hawaii Island Retreat for attending.

Please mark your calendars for the next “Talk Story” events:

  • May TBD: Casey Ballao, Hulihee Palace
  • July 19: Julie Callahan, Volcano Arts Center
  • September 20: Kuulei Keakealani, Kaupulehua Interpretive Center at Kalaemano, Hualalai Resort

Social Media

Aloha Friday Facebook Chat

Makalei Golf Club General Manager Ross Birch was our featured destination expert during BIVB’s live Facebook Chat on Friday, April 12. The chat, moderated by BIVB’s public relations team, takes place the second Friday of each month on the BIVB’s Facebook page. The team also takes questions and shares insights via Twitter using hashtag #hawaiichat. Click here to see the archive.

Our next Facebook chat on May 10 from 10:00-11:00 a.m. HST will feature Hilo Hattie. We encourage all partners to join in the conversation and help share the story of Hawaii Island!

BIVB Joins Pinterest
In addition to engaging on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, BIVB has a new Pinterest page at http://pinterest.com/hithebigisland. Highly popular with women, the photo-sharing website and application has been growing since its inception in 2011. Pinterest’s visual boards are aspirational and commonly used to virtually showcase travel wishlists, plan upcoming events and seek DIY (do-it-yourself) home projects and recipes. Feel free to follow us so we can see and repin your Hawaii Island shots!   

Calendar of Events
A great online resource for planning upcoming visits and a look at what’s ahead, click here for BIVB’s ongoing calendar of events.

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BIVB What’s Sizzlin’ Newsletter October 2012

Posted on October 4, 2012

OCTOBER’S SIZZLIN NEWS FROM HAWAII, THE BIG ISLAND

Hawaii Island (October 1, 2012)

In Hawaii, you know autumn has arrived when the whales are spotted, the surf is swelling, and well, the deals are sizzlin. Take a look at what’s happening on Hawaii Island this month with these new activities, developments and special offers.

ADVENTURES, ACTIVITIES & EVENTS

Kahaluu Beach Park, located in Kona, is Hawaii Island’s premier snorkeling and green sea turtle bay. This shallow, safe bay is also home to more than 100 species of reef fish and 400 year-old corals, and the Kahaluu Bay Education Center is making an effort to preserve the area’s natural resources. Visitors can do their part by renting high-quality snorkel gear or purchasing underwater cameras from the center’s on-site facility and all proceeds will go toward protecting the beautiful bay. Every 25th guest will receive a free turtle key chain; just mention promo code 2345. “Lefty,” their mascot turtle, thanks you! For more information, call (808) 640-1166 or “Like us” on www.facebook.com/kahaluubay.

Imiloa Astronomy Center is now home to the latest addition to the Sagan Planet Walk, which is now the largest exhibit in the world. A walking model of the solar system, the Sagan Planet Walk starts with the Sun station located in downtown Ithaca, New York to the dwarf planet Pluto located less than a mile away at the Sciencenter of Ithaca. The station representing Alpha Centauri, the star nearest to the Sun, was recently installed at Imiloa Astronomy Center to complete the world’s largest exhibit, measuring 5,000 miles from end to end. For more information, visit www.imiloahawaii.org or call (808) 969-9703.

Hawaii Island Skydiving, located at Upolu Airport near the town of Hawi in North Kohala, is now offering the only skydiving adventure available east of Honolulu (Oahu). Skydivers will cruise to altitude on a 20-minute scenic flight in a Cessna jump-craft, taking in majestic views of the North Kohala coastline, West Maui, and the summits of Maunakea, Maunaloa, Hualalai, and Haleakala. The adrenaline-pumping freefall lasts for about 45 seconds, after which you will enjoy a peaceful three to five minute descent under parachute to a soft-landing back at Upolu Airport. No skydiving experience is necessary to participate in this once in a lifetime opportunity. For more information, visit www.bigislandskydiving.com or call (808) 949-4852.

The Shops at Mauna Lani has it all this month including the October “Get Your Pink On” contest and fundraiser for Breast Cancer Awareness month. Take advantage of free events including: First Friday Concert with Alii Keanaaina and the grand opening of Barela Art Gallery on October 5; Polynesian Hula/Fire-Knife shows every Monday and Thursday evening starting at 6 p.m.; Cultural activities all week long including hula, lei making, coconut weaving, ipu making, and ukulele lessons. The festivities conclude with a haunted house for all to enjoy! For all the details, please visit www.facebook.com/theshopsatmaunalani or www.shopsatmaunalani.com, or call (808) 885-9501.

This month, Hilo Palace Theater and its stellar community cast present “Jesus Christ Superstar,” a story based on the Gospel’s account of the last week of Jesus’ life. Playing throughout October, this Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice produced rock opera album turned musical production will feature a live orchestra and special video elements. Tickets are $15 in advance/$20 at the door. Performance dates include Fridays and Saturdays, October 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, and 20 at 7 p.m., and Sundays, October 14 and 21 at 2:30 p.m. For more information, visit www.hilopalace.com.

Gary Washburn, director of the Grammy-winning Honokaa High School Jazz Band for the past 30+ years, will debut his original musical work, “Earth Life: October Full Moon,” on Saturday, October 27, at 7 p.m. at the Honokaa People’s Theater. Inspired by a total solar eclipse, the jazz suite for two pianos and percussion is performed by Washburn and notable Hawaii Island musicians Alex Czerny, Doug Johnson, and Noa Eads. A one-time chance to be part of the creative experience, the concert will be live-recorded for worldwide distribution by Emkay Records. Tickets are available at the door; $10 adults/$7 seniors/$5 children and students. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/EarthLifeOctoberFullMoon or email catherinetarleton@gmail.com.

The Waikoloa Beach Resort Kings’ Course is proud to support the University of Hawaii at Hilo by hosting the Dennis Rose Invitational from October 28-30. Visitors will have a great opportunity to see talented young men and women from nine select NCAA Division II schools compete for the tourney’s best scorecard. For more information, visit www.waikoloagolf.com.

From November 1-3, the Moku O Keawe International Hula Festival will celebrate Hawaiian culture’s unique form of dance at the Waikoloa Beach Resort. Under starry night skies, hula halau (hula troupes) from Hawaii, Japan, and around the world will take center stage at the Waikoloa Bowl in Queens’ Gardens, competing for top honors in hula’s two signature styles: hula kahiko (ancient hula) and hula auana (modern hula). During the day, in-depth cultural workshops and excursions explore the arts and protocols of authentic places, practices, and musical instruments of Hawaii. Plus, a fabulous made-in-Hawaii Marketplace on Friday and Saturday offers fine art and cultural crafts, aloha wear, food products and more. For more information, visit www.mokuokeawe.org.

Queens’ MarketPlace in Waikoloa Beach Resort will celebrate the music, magic and mastery of hula during the Moku O Keawe International Hula Festival from November 1-3, with complimentary hula performances at the center’s Coronation Pavilion. Guests will enjoy the music and dance of the following halau throughout the week: Wednesday – Aulani’s Hula Halau, Thursday – Na Lehua E Liko No Kawailani, Saturday – The Kupukaas, Sunday – Beamer Solomon Halau O Poohala. For more information, visit www.queensmarketplace.net.

Welcome the new year in style at the Hilton Waikoloa Village during the New Hawaii New Year’s Eve Party at the Monarchy Grand Ballroom on Monday, December 31. The celebration kicks off at 7 p.m. and guests will party the night away with featured entertainment by the Johnny Shot Band, specialty dinner stations prepared by the hotel’s award-winning executive chef Charles Charbonneau, a champagne toast to the new year, and in the late evening a gourmet coffee station until 12:30 a.m. Tickets are available now for $129 for adults. For reservations, please call (808) 886-1234.
Ocean Sports treats everyone as part of their ohana (family) and is offering visitors a Family and Friends discount of 50% off the Sail & Swim Adventure. For just $25 per person, guests will enjoy sailing on the Pacific Ocean, great music, fun ocean activities, a Kau Kau Snack Buffet, plus local tap beers, wine, Mai Tais and soft drinks. Offered on Tuesdays and Fridays from 2-4 p.m. For reservations, call (808) 886-6666 ext. 103 and ask for the Friends and Family Fare.

Let Journese travel experts help you complete your journey to Hawaii, the Big Island with a handpicked array of experiences. Choose from day adventures, such as horseback riding, an ATV safari, kayaking and snorkeling. Or discover breathtaking beauty with a waterfall excursion or volcano exploration. Then unwind for the night over a delicious meal at Kahua Ranch or an exquisite stargazing tour atop Maunakea. For more information, visit www.journese.com or call (800) 442-9244.

Head out and explore the island with Pleasant Holidays’ Hot Deals promotion, featuring a free Hertz Car Rental for up to five days. The promotion is valid for travel from now through December 21, 2012 and January 7 to May 24, 2013. Roundtrip transpacific air and minimum five-night stay at a participating hotel on Hawaii, the Big Island are required. For more information, visit www.pleasantholidays.com or call (800) 448-3333.

ACCOMMODATIONS

Renovations are well underway at the historic Volcano House hotel, located on the rim of Kilauea within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Hawaii Volcanoes Lodge Company, LLC manages the 33-room hotel, and will open rooms in phases over the next 12 months, with some rooms available in spring 2013, or sooner. The hotel store is open, and provides a selection of food, drinks, and retail items daily from 7:45 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. First opened in 1846, Volcano House has a storied history with many notable guests in its registry, including Mark Twain, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Isabella Bird. Renovation plans include sharing Native Hawaiian culture through interpretive experiences, including cultural demonstrations, artwork, and handicrafts. Sustainable Hawaii Island ingredients will be featured in the restaurant and other food and beverage outlets. Visit www.hawaiivolcanohouse.com for more information or contact Tanya Ortega, taortega@ortegafamilyenterprises.com, (949) 544-9016.

Hawaii Volcanoes Lodge Company, LLC (HVLC), has completed renovations to the 10 A-frame camper cabins at Namakanipaio Campground, located within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Cabin renovations by HVLC include new flooring and beds, and the park refurbished the communal bathroom and shower facility. Introductory rates are currently $55 per night, and include pillows and linens. Prefer to pitch a tent or drive-in camping? The tent and RV campsites at Namakanipaio are also managed by HVLC, and rates are $15 per campsite per night, first-come, first-served, with a 14-day maximum. Park entrance fees apply for both the cabins and campgrounds ($10 per vehicle, $5 for pedestrians/cyclists; good for seven days). Call (866) 536-7972 for cabin reservations, and visit www.hawaiivolcanohouse.com for more information.

Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, the official headquarters and proud sponsor of the World Ironman Triathlon event, will offer a glimpse into the endurance training of a world-class athlete with a new series of Triathlon Camps beginning in 2013. Led by a seasoned coach and former Ironman Triathlete, this unique program will provide valuable training techniques, individual assessments, nutrition, strength training, and conditioning seminars. Guests can take advantage of the camp package, which consists of a five-night hotel stay plus four days of daily breakfast, lunch, and triathlon training. Visit www.konabeachhotel.com for additional information.

To mark the 96th anniversary of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the beachfront Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa is offering the Hot Lava vacation package starting at $299 per night. It includes a newly minted America the Beautiful® quarter depicting Kilauea Volcano; garden view accommodations; daily breakfast for two; reimbursement for the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park entrance fee; one-time $300 hotel credit which can be applied toward food and beverage; and hotel valet parking. The offer is valid for stays now through November 1, 2012. A minimum four-night stay and advanced reservations are required. Based on availability, restrictions may apply. Coin subject to availability. Promotional code: PKG. For reservations, visit www.waikoloamarriott.com or call (808) 886-6789.

Stay four and save more at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows. Save 25 percent per night and receive a $50 daily credit for dining, spa, or golf when you stay four days or more. This offer applies to all room categories from Garden View to Ocean View Suites. Book by November 30, 2012 for travel through December 23, 2012. Call (808) 367-2323 or visit www.maunalani.com for reservations or more information.

The renewal of Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa is complete. Visitors are invited to experience the resort, re-imagined and uniquely positioned to take its place among the highlights of Hawaii Island. To share the dream, meet team members on the Sheraton Kona blog: www.blog.sheratonkona.com. To celebrate the theatrical release of Disney Pixar’s “Finding Nemo 3D” and save on your family getaway, book promo code LFR* and enjoy connecting rooms, a $25 Daily Resort Credit, “Finding Nemo” 3D glasses and beach towel; rates from $289 per night. For more information, visit www.sheratonkona.com.

Aston Hotels & Resorts’ Aloha Book coupons add “extras” to a fall family vacation where kids stay, play, and eat for free. Just minutes from Aston Kona by the Sea, the Atlantis Submarine adventure is free for children when accompanied by an adult. Ooohs and ahhhs are guaranteed. Tucked along Hawaii Belt Road, Makalei Golf Club offers Aston guests discounted rates for a two or foursome. An Ocean Sports coupon for a snorkel, sunset, whale watch or glass bottom boat tour adds fun for families staying at Aston Waikoloa Colony Villas or Aston Shores at Waikoloa. For more information, visit www.astonhotels.com.

Take advantage of October golf promotions at Mauna Kea Resorts’ Hapuna Golf Course and Mauna Kea Golf Course. Triple Play is $375 plus tax per person for two rounds at Hapuna and one round at Mauna Kea. 5 Play is $500 plus tax per person for three rounds at Hapuna and two rounds at Mauna Kea. Or, get three days of unlimited golf for $600 per person plus tax. Additional days are also available with the promotion for $200 plus tax per person. The golf offers are available until December 18, 2012. For more information and tee times, call (808) 882-5400.

To celebrate its 25th year in business, Waipio Wayside Bed & Breakfast, a historic sugar plantation B&B located minutes from Waipio Valley, is offering a free room upgrade (when available) to all visitors as a way to say mahalo (thanks). The offer is good from October 1, 2012 through December 20, 2012. Waipio Wayside B&B recently earned a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for 2012. For more information, visit www.waipiowayside.com.

Dragonfly Ranch, an award-winning B&B on the Kona Coast, is offering an Ohana (family) off-season discount, as much as one-third off its three luxury suites, through December 20, 2012. This unique healing arts center features a far-infrared sauna, colorful labyrinth, and an organic garden. Dragonfly Ranch also offers spa pamperings, gluten-free breakfast, and special diet counseling for guests interested in being pro-active about their wellness. Dragonfly Ranch is ideally located just a three-minute drive from Puuhonua o Honaunau and close to five pristine bays, providing world-class snorkeling with wild sea turtles and dolphins. Book online at www.dragonflyranch.com or call (808) 328-2159.

TASTY TIDBITS

Hilton Waikoloa Village introduces a unique on-the-water experience, Ports of Call, inviting guests to relaxing happy hours every day at participating locations. Beginning at Boat Landing Cantina after 2 p.m., retreat to the first stop of Ports of Call with tropical margaritas and snacks. Guests can also enjoy the Kona and Kohala pool bars and Lagoon Grill, for specials and discounts on cocktails, beer, and finger foods. As the afternoon winds down, Dona and Toni’s offers mouth-watering pizzas during happy hour from 5-6 p.m., and guests can continue into the evening with live music and drinks at Malolo Lounge, featuring discounts on drinks and wines. For more information, please visit www.hiltonwaikoloavillage.com.

Check out Mauna Kea Beach Hotel’s newest buffet at its Copper Terrace. The Buffet is offered every Sunday and Monday from 6-8:30 p.m. Enjoy Hawaii Island foods such as local sashimi, grilled island fish, beef short ribs, pizza, and Mauna Kea Hot Malasadas with Ice Cream. Cost is $45 per person. For more information and reservations, call (808) 882-5707 or visit www.maunakeabeachhotel.com.

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