16.1 Million people visited Nashville in 2019, soaring past previous record


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) —Nashville has yet again broken the record for the number of visitors in a year.

Officials with the Nashville Convention and Visitor's Corporation said 16.1 million people visited Music City in 2019 - crushing the previous record of 15.2 million.

To cap off the year, the city's New Year's Eve party drew 200,000 guests and came in with an all-time high visitor spending at $26.6 million - about a 16% increase from 2018. Folks flocking to Nashville NYE booked 25,529 hotel rooms. Food was collected during the event for the Second Harvest Food Bank and will provide 8,300 meals to those experiencing hunger.

Nashville remains among the top destinations to visit in the world, according to Condé Nast Traveler, Forbes and The Sun (U.K.). The Sports Business Journal also named Nashville at the Best Sports City of 2019, largely for its massiveNFL Draft success that brought in 600,000 people and $133 million in visitor spending.

“Nashville should be proud of sustaining our momentum as a top destination, bringing in a record number of visitors from all over the world,” Nashville Mayor John Cooper said. “Our hospitality industry is thriving and will continue to play a critical role in generating revenue for both our local economy and essential city services.”

NCVC said without this tourism money, Davidson County residents would have to pay about $2,000 more per household in taxes each year.

2019 Tourism Stats, provided by NCVC:

  • Nashville sold about the same number of hotel rooms last year as Tampa and Philadelphia, and more than New Orleans, San Antonio, Charleston and Austin.
  • The number of hotel rooms in Nashville has grown to 33,200, compared to 30,600 last year.
  • There are 5,030 hotel rooms under construction with another 9,614 that are in the stages of final planning/planning/prospect with a total of 14,644 rooms in the pipeline.
  • 17 new properties with 3,455 rooms are scheduled to open in 2020, including three properties with 446 rooms that have already opened this year. 18 new hotel properties opened in 2019; 15 properties opened in 2018 with nine in 2017 and five in 2016.
  • 112 new restaurants/bars/cafes opened in 2019, the third year in a row to exceed 100 openings. Already, 109 have been announced and are expected to open in 2020.
  • Nashville International Airport (BNA) is one of the fastest growing airports in North America. It served nearly 18.3 million passengers in 2019 on 14 airlines with 540 total daily flights to 75 nonstop destinations.

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