COLUMN: The trials and triumphs of tourism in Destin

Destin Forward

The Destin Forward Class of 2014 toured Henderson Beach State Park as part of tourism day. From this boardwalk you can see the remnants of old Highway 98, which used to run along the gulf.

Special to The Log
Published: Tuesday, January 14, 2014 at 03:58 PM.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Log Editor William Hatfield is a member of this year’s Destin Forward class. He is filing stories chronicling his experiences in the Chamber of Commerce’s leadership program. As part of its focus on tourism, the class heard from several panels of tourism experts and industry leaders, and it toured the Destin Airport, the Destin History and Fishing Museum and Henderson Beach State Park.

 

Whether you realize it or not, you are an integral part of the tourism business in Destin.

“We are all in the tourism industry,” said Jeanne Dailey, founder and CEO of Newman-Dailey Resort properties in Destin.

And 70 percent of tourists who flood Okaloosa County stay in Destin. They come for the sugar white sands, emerald waters and the small town-feel of what has become a world-class resort town.

“It’s Southern hospitality,” said Dan Martin, director of sales and marketing for Resorts of Pelican Beach. “It’s inbred in us to be kind.”

But it takes more than kindness to compete with neighboring counties and a bevy of brands including Emerald Coast, Visit South Walton and 30A.



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