California Visitors Association opens office to promote bi-lateral tourism opportunities with Dubai
The Orange County Visitors Association (OCVA) announced it will open its third foreign visitors office in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates as a part of a campaign to encourage tourism to and from the California region.
The new venture represents the first American based tourism office to maintain a full-time presence in Dubai, which is increasingly becoming a popular tourist destination for Americans and also a prime location for American business development.
“Being represented in the Middle East is very important to us for a number of reasons,” said Ed Fuller, OCVA’s president and chief executive officer.
“Nearly one million Middle Eastern travelers visited the United States last year. They came to visit our world-class family attractions and theme parks, shop, attend concerts, take in the sites and unique outdoor experiences—all attributes we have in abundance in Orange County, a destination travelers the world over refer to as The OC.
“Furthermore, the fastest-growing, nonstop, bi-lateral commercial airline service in the world today is between the UAE and the U.S., up 1,500 percent in the past decade,” he continued.
“At the same time, California is home to the largest Middle Eastern immigrant population in the U.S. We are determined to ensure that Middle Easterners, especially those from Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, who are planning a visit to the U.S. and California in the near future, know about Orange County and to assure them they will feel right at home in The OC.”
Fuller said that Vice President Glenn Johnston has been named to head the new OCVA’s Dubai office.
“I am extremely excited and honored to introduce to all in the Middle East Orange County’s casual sophistication, pristine beaches, legendary theme parks, inspirational shopping, endless options for fun in the sun and cultural exploration. As the U.S.’s first tourism association to have a permanent representational presence in the Gulf, I applaud The OC’s vision in choosing to reach out to all in the Middle East to say ‘Welcome! Come visit us,” Mr. Johnston said.
The OCVA opened offices in Shanghai in October 2013 and also in Beijing, China as part of a long-range strategic marketing plan to take The OC travel story to a broad audience of potential visitors outside the U.S.
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Editors Note: The Orange County Visitors Association represents over 700 partners in hospitality and tourism who work together to create a welcoming environment for the 43.8 million visitors who come to The OC annually and spend $8.7 billion in the county supporting 160,000 local tourism-related jobs. Orange County is located in the heart of Southern California and provides easy access to all the attractions the region offers.