Category Archives: Tourism

Mississauga Introduces Hotel Tax to Promote Local Tourism

On Wednesday, November 1 at General Committee, Mississauga City Council approved in principle the introduction of a four per cent hotel tax effective July 1, 2018. The new tax is a result of Bill 127 which the Government of Ontario passed earlier this year. The Stronger, Healthier Ontario Act (Budget Measures) 2017 allows municipalities to charge a transient accommodations tax also called a hotel tax.

“This new revenue tool is an opportunity for the City of Mississauga to generate important funds that will be reinvested in an accountable, transparent and dedicated way toward undertaking important city-building initiatives to grow and diversify our local economy, strengthen our tourism industry and showcase our many celebrated attractions, festivals, heritage, culture and businesses.” – Mayor Bonnie Crombie

The four per cent hotel tax rate is consistent with the rate being considered by the City of Toronto. With Mississauga and Toronto being near to each other, applying a similar rate in Mississauga would ensure local hotels continue to be competitive.

The City estimates that the tax will generate approximately $9.8 million annually, 50 per cent of which will be shared with Tourism Toronto to promote tourism in Mississauga. The City and Tourism Toronto will use hotel tax revenues for tourism-related activities such as implementing recommendations from the Tourism Master Plan, developing and maintaining tourism-related infrastructure, improving programs and services and for Economic Development initiatives.

“Mississauga hotels are essential to our tourism activities and it’s important for them to know how the City is going to use the money it collects,” said Pat Saito, Ward 9 Councillor and Chair of the Mississauga Tourism Advisory Board. “We are already working closely with Tourism Toronto to build tourism in Mississauga. Our goal is to use the tax to attract more visitors and generate more hotel stays all of which will make our local economy stronger.”

During the coming months, City staff will meet with hotel industry stakeholders to help them understand the hotel tax and prepare for the July 1 start date.

In addition to hotels, the City will also explore the possibility of introducing a similar tax on private short-term vacation rentals.

The recommendations will go to Council for final approval on November 8 and a final report is expected to go back to General Committee in January 2018.

City’s New Tourism Plan Focuses on Making Mississauga a Tourist Destination

Today, during General Committee, staff from the City’s Recreation division presented Mississauga’s new Tourism Master Plan. Endorsed by Council, the five-year plan provides a vision for tourism in Mississauga.

“This plan is a new way forward; helping to transform Mississauga into a place where visitors can experience the culture and diversity that makes our city so special,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. “This plan builds on our city’s economic success and high quality of life to attract visitors and tourism investment.”

Funded jointly by the City and its regional tourism organization, Tourism Toronto, the Master Plan guides future tourism efforts, provides strategic direction to help elevate Mississauga as a tourist destination and identifies key initiatives to promote positive visitor experiences.

The plan positions Mississauga for success by:

  • creating recognition throughout Ontario as an emerging sports, cultural and waterfront destination
  • increasing the tourism impact on its economic growth
  • ensuring that a municipal structure is in place to advance tourism opportunities

Crombie added, “It builds on our authentic reputation as a welcoming city, while reinforcing our renewed vision of making Mississauga an internationally recognized and celebrated tourist destination. The outlined recommendations allow for a more robust platform for future tourism efforts.”

The plan outlines the following eight strategic focus areas with recommended actions which include:

  • Developing Tourism Product Clusters
  • Celebrating Community Diversity
  • Planning Creative Communities to Attract Visitors
  • Tourism Funding and Product Investment
  • Tourism Brand Development
  • Promoting and Developing Tourism Assets
  • Expanding Partnerships and Alliances
  • Municipal Structure to Support Tourism

“As Chair of the Mississauga Tourism Advisory Board, I am very proud of all the work that has gone into this plan. The recommendations brought forward within the plan will grow our tourism sector – attracting visitors from far and wide, whether it is for business, sport or pleasure. It also allows us to capitalize on our existing tourism assets like the downtown core, our evolving waterfront and top-notch sporting infrastructure,” said Pat Saito, Ward 9 Councillor and Chair of the Mississauga Tourism Advisory Board. “Thank you to Members of Council, the Mississauga Tourism Advisory Board, our Recreation staff, Tourism Toronto and to all those who helped bring this plan to fruition.”

In July 2016, the consulting team of MDB Insight and HLT Advisory were engaged to work with city staff to develop a Tourism Master Plan. The planning process included stakeholder consultations, research on industry trends and benchmarking information from cities across North America with similar tourism and visitor profiles. Consultants interviewed both internal and external stakeholders, from City staff to hotel and retail operators, and representatives from Tourism Toronto.

The Tourism Master Plan will go to Council for final endorsement next week.

With Council’s approval, staff will implement the Tourism Master Plan in early 2018. To learn more about the City’s new Tourism Master Plan, or to find out more about Mississauga, visit discovermississauga.ca.

17 MUST-ATTEND AWARD-WINING THEMED & CULTURAL FESTIVALS & EVENTS!

Family and friends are summoned to flock to Ontario streets

Streetsville Bread & Honey FestONTARIO (May 10, 2017) There’s no better place to flock the streets this year than at an Ontario festival. Festivals & Events Ontario (FEO) is happy to highlight a subset of FEO’s award-winning festivals – each of these themed and cultural festival has something distinctive and unique to offer its guests! The kaleidoscope of festivities lying in wait for you range from bush planes to sheep dogs to cacti and everything in between. It’s just so easy to be captivated by anyone of these festivals and events and there’s something special for everyone.

This year’s Themed and Cultural Festival Highlights include:
Scotiabank Contact Photography Festival     May 1 – 31  (Toronto)  scotiabankcontactphoto.com  CONTACT is the largest photography festival in the world devoted to celebrating the art and profession of photography with over 1500 artists exhibiting at more than 200 venues throughout the GTA. Continue reading 17 MUST-ATTEND AWARD-WINING THEMED & CULTURAL FESTIVALS & EVENTS!