• Catalina Island Celebrates Being One of the Best Island Getaways

     
    POSTED August 13, 2019
     
  • Catalina Island Celebrates Being One of the Best Island Getaways

     
    POSTED August 13, 2019
     

Catalina Island, consistently ranked one of the best island getaways by various media outlets, has always been a tourist destination. But in the past few years, the island's new additions of meeting facilities and other accommodations have transformed the island from a popular vacation spot to a desirable meeting destination. 

"It's a unique location in that it's an island and away from the hustle and bustle of a metropolitan area, allowing groups to focus on their goals at hand. In Avalon and at Two Harbors, everything is walking distance, so attendees can walk from the boat to their accommodations, local restaurants and all activities," says Cathy Miller, vice president of marketing & sales for the Catalina Island Chamber & Visitors Bureau. "The only transportation needed is from the mainland to the island via passenger ferry or helicopter. It feels as if you've traveled to an international destination for a meeting, yet it's only 26 miles from the mainland."

The island, easily accessible by Catalina Express ferries, also boasts additions to its leisure activities. No longer just a summer beach resort, the island offers hiking, biking and year-round activities, making it an all-season vacation and meeting/event location. Activities for team-building range from escape rooms and the aerial adventure to zip lining and a local food tour. 

"Catalina Island is one of California's treasures and the only island resort destination in the state with an authentic ambiance and friendly locals, exceptional and pristine beauty, and unique opportunities for groups," Miller says.

The U.S. Travel Association has called the current moment the “Great Travel Depression,” in light of the economic effects resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.

 

Due to COVID-19, non-essential travel was, or has been, banned for months. Long anticipated trips and in-person gatherings were canceled and people have adjusted to the new normal: staying at home and meeting over Zoom. However, states have been slowly lifting restrictions, and non-essential travel will soon be happening across the country again. However, some may not be as comfortable with the thought of traveling as they were before the pandemic.  

 

Portland will be home to the first Ritz-Carlton in the Pacific Northwest. Developer BPM Real Estate Group is bringing the brand to the city, with an anticipated opening in early 2023. Plans call for a 35-story tower with 251 hotel rooms and 138 residential units, including eight penthouses.