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3 Westerly2August 17, 2018 -- From the Long Island Sound to the Hudson River, start your day hiking in the mountains, touring museums, riding the Dragon Coaster or enjoy the evening toasting at top-rated restaurants and cutting edge breweries. Westchester County has something for everyone and the numbers prove it.  Westchester County’s tourism industry, which ranks third in the state behind New York City and Long Island, represents 51% of all visitor spending in the Hudson Valley region.  The County’s travel and tourism industry continued to grow in 2017 with visitor spending up 3% to a record of $1.9 billion.   Last year visitor spending directly and indirectly supported 24,527 jobs in Westchester, 5% of all jobs in the county. And, at the same time travel and tourism generated $227 million in tax revenue for state and local municipalities.

Westchester County Executive George Latimer said: “Thanks to the hard work of everyone involved in this ever-growing sector of our economy, Westchester County continues to shine as a premier regional destination for business and leisure travelers in New York State. With the building of new hotels and upgrades being made by existing properties, new restaurants, breweries, and attractions, we are excited to see the tourism industry continue to flourish here in our beautiful County.”

Director of Westchester County Tourism and Film Natasha Caputo said: “The bottom line is - Westchester is a popular destination. We are a major economic engine and we drive the tourism experience within the Hudson Valley. From music festivals, to top-notch dining and entertaining, to arts and culture, we always have new attractions and that allows for that repeat visitor, and offers an opportunity for memorable experiences.”

Westchester County Legislator Catherine Borgia said: “Westchester County has so many beautiful resources. We have a lot of events and recreation that help to bring people into that experience of how people want to be spending their recreation dollars right now. Being in a beautiful setting, getting a new experience, trying new things. We are so fortunate that Westchester County is able to capitalize and grow on our resources.”

Deputy Commissioner of Westchester County Parks, Recreation & Conservation Peter Tartaglia said: “We have fifty parks and they are all great. We have Playland Park in Rye, our national historic landmark amusement park that has been allowing families to make memories for 90 years. We have six challenging golf courses, our unique Muscoot Farm and Ladson Park in Somers which houses the only glass house arboretum in Westchester County. We thank the tourists and we want more of you to come, so meet us in Westchester any time.”

Spending in the Food & Beverage sector increased 3% to $543,284,000, a testament to the exceptional hospitality and quality of dining throughout the County. Notable newcomers include Southern Table in Pleasantville and Fin & Brew, a New American restaurant overlooking the Hudson River in The Factoria at Charles Point in Peekskill. 

General Manager of 3 Westerly Bar and Grill in Ossining Wander DeBrito said: “We are very proud of what we’ve done with this restaurant at this location. From last summer to this year – we’ve seen an increase in business of about seven percent. Supporting local farms and restaurants and breweries and being a part of Westchester, we’re very proud to be here and we hope to see more of you here.”

 The Recreation sector also posted gains in visitor spending last year, rising 4% to $178,330,000.  This sector benefited from lively arts and culture venues, visual and performing arts events and attractions taking place year-round throughout the County.  New attractions include Boundless Adventures, an outdoor adventure park set on the campus of SUNY Purchase College and the New York Liberty, New York’s very own WNBA team at the Westchester County Center in White Plains.

President of the Westchester Hotel Association and General Manager of Cambria Suites Sean Meade said: “These numbers are great news for the hotel industry here in Westchester. Our members work hard to put forth their very best and attract new business to the region. Features like Westchester County Airport and our proximity to New York City help us continue this growth year after year.”

Spending in the Lodging sector totaled $424,056,000, up 2% from 2016, with room demand, as measured by hotel room nights filled, was up 4% to 1.6 million. Most recent highlights in the lodging sector include major renovations at the Westchester Marriott in Tarrytown and the Hyatt House in White Plains, and the opening of the Hilton Garden Inn Westchester in Dobbs Ferry.