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Post-IPW FAMS bring 400 people to over 40 destinations
Post-IPW FAMS bring 400 people to over 40 destinations

By Jamie Lathrop

The IPW high continued as Visit California and numerous industry partners pulled together the largest FAM trip Visit California has ever hosted. With almost 400 members of the trade and media setting out on 13 different tours, the lowest valleys to the highest peaks were reached and the experiences were unforgettable.

Starting off where extremes are the norm, a full tour of 30 attendees explored a visit to the to the largest national park outside of Alaska at Death Valley on a 2-day tour. Mountain-sized sand dunes, colorful sandstone canyons along with heat they surely won’t forget this tour was one that has them all coming back for more.

And the fun continued Thursday as 150 attendees were sent up north on early morning flights out of John Wayne Airport where groups set out to discover new destinations and revisit old. These tours — North of the Bay, Alpine Adventures & the Gold Country, Mountain High, Bay or Bust, and NorCal Wine Down — took guests through experiences like seeing the beauty of Yosemite with personally guided tours of the park floor, wine tasting and farm exploring with Michelin chefs of SingleThread restaurant, sailing tours of Lake Tahoe’s north and southern tips and tours of Oakland’s art and food scene that make this growing urban community so special. And in an effort to show off that classic California double — skiing and surfing in a single day — Visit California made sure to hit the coastal spots of the north with visits to Mendocino and the sands of Santa Cruz.  

It also can’t go unsaid that attendees are still smiling about their experience paddle-boarding in Sacramento with Olympic gold medalist, Jonny Moseley, and a magical evening under the stars in Sonoma at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate

The Southern California tours were equally popular and presented undiscovered experiences with visits to places like Joshua Tree, Twentynine Palms and Temecula on the Deserts and Mountains, and SoCal Soultours. Guests had the thrill of their life at BMW Performance Center and a truly VIP experience with San Diego as they were given a behind the scenes tour of Petco Park and followed it with red carpet treatment in a suite at the MLB Padres game.  

And a list of tours wouldn’t be complete without heading up towards Los Angeles for the highly sought after La La Land tour. Shopping at Citadel Outlets, a downtown tour and West Hollywood’s weekend of Pride LA activities made for an unforgettable experience for these attendees. Santa Monica and Burbank also made sure to put all the fun (and sun) in the Family Fun & CA Sun tour by pulling out all the stops. Doesn’t everyone tour this city by horse and segway? 

Heading back up the coast, our Central Coasting tour of SLOCal and Monterey had our guests wanting their weekend to never end. This tour captured many moments of firsts and a whole lot of laughs with dune buggie rides, convertible bus rides, beach bon-fires and topped off with a magical final evening under twinkle lights with a farm-table experience you only see in the movies. Neighboring destinations of Ventura County Coast and Santa Barbara made sure to show off what makes these coastal paradises so special too. A visit to the Channel Islands joined by California Ambassador and Influencer Kyle Mulinder, strawberry picking and plenty of wine tasting ticked all the boxes for the attendees of Riviera Retreat. 

And last but not least was a tour of Mountains and Valleys with the only FAM group comprised of 30 Chinese buyers and media. Partners at Mammoth Lakes, Lake Mono, San Jose and TriValley took this group on an epic road trip. Starting in Anaheim, they drove to Mammoth Lakes where they explored the summer snow with their own lesson in nature photography and continued on to Silicon Valley where they were greeted by Assemblymember Kansen Chu at Luna Mexican Kitchen (recently awarded Michlen’s Bib Gourmand honor). Their final stop on the Valley tour was over to TriValley where they got in some retail therapy at SF Outlets and treated to an incredible finale dinner and tasting in the caves at Wente Vineyards

To wrap it up - 4 days, 400 people, 13 tours, 6 airports, a whole lot of buses and over 40 destinations! All in all, it was a huge success! A huge thank you to all participating partners that helped to bring the Dream Big motto to life.  

A special thank you to Best VIP who assisted in driving our groups on their CA Roadtrip Republic adventures. 

Front of Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara, CA for the 2017 Outlook Forum.
Registration Opening Soon for Media Events in Atlanta and New York

By Kristen Bonilla

Visit California is excited to announce that registration for two upcoming media events in key domestic markets will be opening soon. 

Coming up first is the 2019 Atlanta Media Boot Camp, from November 5-7. This event will begin in Atlanta and offer one-on-one networking with top travel media from Atlanta and the surrounding region, as well as an engaging influencer event. From there, the delegation will take a day trip to the Meredith office in Birmingham, where editors and writers from key outlets such as Food & Wine, Coastal Living and Cooking Light are based. 

The Atlanta Media Boot Camp will cost $1,750 and will follow the format of Visit California’s previous media boot camps in Seattle, Chicago and Austin. For those who have not yet experienced this format, the extended and immersive nature of boot camps have proven to be very successful, resulting in incredible exposure for the Golden State in key markets. Attendees from each of the prior boot camps have reported that this format helps build strong media relationships, which have led to subsequent press trips and coverage.

Registration for the 2019 Atlanta Media Boot Camp will open on August 6 at 9 a.m. Partners will have 72 hours to express their interest in attending. Space for this event is limited, so please be prepared to submit your best story ideas during registration. After registration closes, Visit California will follow up with confirmations and a link to finalize registration.

Second, Visit California will continue its partnership with TravMedia’s International Media Marketplace (IMM) USA in 2020, with the return of the California Pavilion at IMM.

The California Pavilion at IMM will once again provide California partners an exclusive platform to meet with top-tier U.S. and Canadian journalists. Delegates will benefit from 24 one-on-one media meetings; high-visibility California designated space in the event’s exhibition hall; inclusion in Visit California’s collateral piece, placed in each journalists bag; and an invitation to the exclusive IMM Welcome Reception on January 22. 

Visit California is particularly excited to share that our partners can take advantage of a special California delegate registration price of $1550. This is a $500 savings available only to California delegates, and has been subsidized in part by Visit California.

Similar to last year, the Second Annual Visit California New York Media Mission will coincide with the California Pavilion at IMM. Feedback and results from last year’s events were amazing, and we’re looking forward to another successful year! Registration for the additional New York Media Mission events will open after delegates receive confirmation of California Pavilion participation. The dates of the Mission, including IMM, will be January 22-24, 2020.

Registration for the California Pavilion at IMM will open on July 16 at 9 a.m. Partners will have 72 hours to express their interest in attending. After registration closes, Visit California will follow up with confirmations and a link to finalize registration.

For more information or questions about the Atlanta Media Boot Camp or the California Pavilion at IMM, please contact Domestic PR Manager, Kristen Bonilla.


Canada Sales & Media Mission

September 2019 | $3,000


IFTM Top Resa 2019 & Sales Days

September 2019 | Starting at $3,000


California STAR

Ongoing | Starting at $3,500


Digital content submission - PR

Ongoing | FREE

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