Miami’s Career Landscape: Hospitality
Miami has no longer become a stopover city for cruise goers and travelers to South America; it has become the final destination for many tourists. Known for our luxurious amenities, beautiful beaches, and world-class nightlife, our city played host to 14.6 million tourists in 2014. Such international events as Art Basel, Ultra Music Festival, and various sporting events bring in a variety of different visitors. Law360 reported that domestic travel has increased by 10% and international travel is up by 6% within the last year. With 11.9% of all employees in the county working in hospitality, the industry is continuously growing as tourism increases.
As Miami entertains the masses, the hospitality industry is trying to keep up with the demand. According to the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, Miami was ranked third highest in national occupancy rates. Beating out Orlando and Los Angeles with a rate of 76.8%. With this influx of vacationers, hotels are trying to keep up with this high demand. As of January, an estimated 6,000 new hotel rooms will be added to Miami’s inventory by the end of this year.
As these new hotels are being built, there are many other projects in the works that intend to attract more visitors to the area. The Miami Design District plans to finish Phase III of construction by the end of the year, which will include more luxury shopping, the new Institute for Contemporary Art building, and more public art spaces. On the western side of the county, the American Dream Miami project will attempt to become the biggest mall in North America. A 200-acre complex, costing over $4 billion, the mall plans to begin construction within the year—with the unveiling intended for 2018. Nevertheless, you are able to see a growth in international travel before these projects will be complete.
In the past five years, there has been a steady increase of foreign travelers. Miami New Times revealed that Miami hosted a total of 5.7 million foreign visitors in 2015, showing an increase of 4% when compared to the previous year. This is further proved by the steady traffic seen at our airport. Deemed America’s second-busiest airport for international passengers, Miami International Airport sees close to 20 million passengers a year. In 2015, MIA introduced 5 new international destinations to its global network. The airport estimates that with the addition of these new destinations 3,435 jobs will be added and $457 million will be contributed to our economy. Miami-Dade Aviation Department Director Emilio T. González remarks, “…that each new international destination and flight that we add to our network has the effect of someone starting a brand new business here in Miami-Dade County, and that’s clearly a good thing for our entire community.”
Miami-Dade County reported that within the fourth quarter of 2015, the Leisure and Hospitality Industry added the most jobs of any industry. A total of 6,900 were added in the last quarter alone, proving to be up 5.2% to the previous year. Most of these jobs can be found at our local casinos, first-rate hotels, and international cruise lines.