Baltimore's tourism industry took a significant hit after rioting and unrest in April, with hotel room bookings down nearly 9 percent between last July and the end of June this year despite the major economic boon of the Star Spangled Spectacular and a rise in the number of conventions.
Comptroller Peter Franchot toured downtown Baltimore Thursday, stopping first at the Trinacria Italian Cafe, before going to the National Aquarium and then to the Captain James Landing Restaurant in an effort to promote the city before this weekend's Independence Day festivities.
Saturday's march for Freddie Gray from the west side to City Hall could cause traffic problems and prompted at least one cancellation, while other businesses and event organizers are monitoring the situation.
Barely a week ahead of the Colonial Athletic Association's second men's basketball championship at Royal Farms Arena, commissioner Tom Yeager stressed that this year's event will tell both the league and the city a lot about the viability of a contract extension beyond 2016.
Big names and unknowns will convene this week for Maryland's first World Series of Poker circuit event at the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore and the casino expects thousands of players from the mid-Atlantic region and beyond.
One of Baltimore's most prominent development firms wants to build a new, world-class arena on piers in the Inner Harbor, reviving a long-talked-about project that would replace the aging Royal Farms Arena on the city's west side.
September's Star-Spangled Spectacular drew 1.43 million people who spent $164 million on hotel rooms, meals and entertainment, down slightly from a similar event that kicked off War of 1812 bicentennial commemorations in 2012, according to a report released Tuesday.
The Baltimore Running Festival consistently generates about $40 million in economic impact each year, according to official estimates, and at its peak, the Grand Prix of Baltimore pumped $47 million into area hotels, restaurants and stores. But city officials say this week's Star-Spangled Spectacular — which marks 200 years since troops in Baltimore beat back a British invasion in 1814 — could surpass all those totals.
As the nation's eyes turn to Baltimore for commemoration of the War of 1812 bicentennial next week, businesses leaders are capitalizing on what one official called "the largest tourism event in our city's history" and on the chance to showcase the city in three live national television broadcasts.
Baltimore's long and at times fraught efforts to bring gambling to the city finally succeed with the Horseshoe Casino opening on Tuesday. Observers will watch how it does in an increasingly saturated casino marketplace.
About 10,000 people are expected to come to the city for the grand opening of the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore one week from today, a key early test for city officials and business leaders eager for a smooth launch.
The local branch of the NAACP was premature last week when it announced that the organization's 2016 national convention will be held in Baltimore, a spokeswoman from the national headquarters said Thursday.
Baltimore's hotel market is at a crossroads as investments pour into properties new and old amid a nationwide pickup in business and leisure travel. As new hotels open, older properties scramble to remain competitive in a market in which demand for rooms remains healthy but has yet to rebound to pre-recession levels.
Baltimore tourism leaders will have to find another way to draw visitors over Labor Day weekend after the Grand Prix of Baltimore was canceled. They are focused on more sporting events and filling up the dead time of winter.
Otakon, the Japanese and East Asian anime and culture convention that has drawn tens of thousands of people to Baltimore since 1999, will be held in Washington D.C. beginning in 2017, organizers announced Sunday.
In a move to enhance what is one of the nation's most robust African penguin breeding colonies, Maryland Zoo officials are preparing to break ground on a $10.4 million state- and grant-funded project to build a new, 1.5-acre exhibit for the birds to call home.