Munich on the Willamette

| Print |  Email
Tuesday, July 01, 2008

PortlandRiverside1106


STATEWIDE Gunther Hoffmann knows at least one reason why German tourists are expected to flock to Oregon this summer: “Germans are entranced with the West and Indians,” says Hoffmann, head of the German Consulate in Portland.

The influx of Germans also is the result of a devalued dollar boosting the euro and aggressive marketing of Oregon in Europe as a premier tourist destination, say industry experts. German tour operators expect 400% growth in sales of Oregon travel packages, says Teresa O’Neil, director of sales and marketing at Travel Oregon, the state’s official tourism marketing organization. “We’re a bargain to them,” she says.

Germans are attracted to Oregon’s green initiatives, such as Portland’s mass transit system and TriMet line to the airport, and like Munich, Portland is internationally known for its beer. “We call it Munich on the Willamette,” O’Neil says. It also helps that Germans typically receive up to six weeks of vacation annually, Hoffmann says.

O’Neil also promotes Oregon at the annual March tourism convention in Berlin. She says one German tour agency she works with has seen a 160% increase in sales of Oregon tour packages. Lufthansa, the German-based airline that added a direct flight between PDX and Frankfurt five years ago, says the number of leisure travelers using the route is significantly up from this time last year. The airline doesn’t release exact figures.

Guest ranches in Oregon that are popular with Europeans, especially Germans, are seeing increased reservations for this summer. Eva Gill, part owner of Rock Springs Dude Ranch in Bend, says 21.5% of her booked clients this year are Europeans, a 13.5% increase from 2007. Long Hollow Ranch in Central Oregon says reservations are down, but one bright spot has been an increase in European clients.

German tourists are a windfall for local hotels, too.

At Portland-based Provenance Hotels, domestic business is down but international bookings are up 19% through April from the same time last year. Of that, 65% are Germans and Dutch, says chief operating officer Howard Jacobs. Speak German? If so, the hotels are hiring, Jacobs says.

The Heathman Hotel in Portland is seeing a similar trend. In response, the hotel has added more foreign language television stations, says general manager Chris Erickson.

“Right now Oregon has a blue light on top of it,” he says. “And it is shouting blue-light special.”                      

JASON SHUFFLER



To comment, email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 

More Articles

The short list: Holiday habits of six Oregon CEOs

The Latest
Thursday, December 11, 2014
121214-xmaslist1BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

We ask business and nonprofit leaders how they survive the season.


Read more...

Two Sides of the Coin

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
22 twosidesBY JASON NORRIS

Historically, when the leaves fall, so do the markets. This year, earnings, Europe, energy and Ebola have in common? Beyond alliteration, they are four factors that the investors are pointing to for this year’s seasonal volatility.


Read more...

Reimagining education to solve Oregon's student debt and underemployment problems

News
Thursday, November 13, 2014
carsonstudentdept-thumbBY RYAN CARSON | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

How do we skill up our future technology workforce in a smart way to take advantage of these high-paying jobs? The answer shouldn’t focus only on helping people get a bachelor’s degree.


Read more...

Dan and Louis Oyster Bar opens up to a changing neighborhood

The Latest
Thursday, December 11, 2014
121114-oystervidBy MEGHAN NOLT

VIDEO: Revamping a Classic — an iconic eatery stays relevant in a changing marketplace.


Read more...

The clean fuels opportunity

News
Monday, November 10, 2014
111014-dirtyfuel-thumbBY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A market for low-carbon transportation fuels has a chance to flourish in Oregon if regulators adopt the second phase of the state’s Clean Fuels Program.


Read more...

Healthcare Perspective

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE

A conversation with Majd El-Azma, president and CEO of LifeWise Health Plan of Oregon, followed by the Healthcare Powerlist.


Read more...

Corner Office: Marv LaPorte

January-Powerbook 2015
Saturday, December 13, 2014

The president of LaPorte & Associates lets us in on his day-to-day life.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS