Ontario Adds 19,800 Jobs in January
Ontario's economy continued its positive momentum with the second straight month of job creation, adding 19,800 jobs in January. This brings the total increase in employment since the recessionary low in June 2009 to 608,300. Read more here.
November 2015 Tourism Snapshot
Please be advised that Destination Canada has just released the November 2015 Tourism Snapshot, view it here.
Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence: HAC Conference 2016
The Hotel Association of Canada's Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence Program was developed in 2004 with the purpose of recognizing those of its members (individuals, companies, properties) that have demonstrated significant accomplishments, exemplary leadership and tireless commitment to Canada's lodging industry. For more details, to register and for GTHA promo code, click here.
Ministry’s Current Performance Indicators for November 2015
The Ministry’s Current Performance Indicators have been updated with November 2015 data, view it here.
Westin Harbour Castle Up For Sale
The Westin Harbour Castle is on the market and the iconic hotel, located on the downtown Toronto waterfront, could be the most expensive hotel ever sold in the Canadian market. Read more here.
Hilton Worldwide Changes the Game with a Revolutionary New Midscale Brand
Hilton Worldwide unveiled Tru by Hilton, a brand that is simplified, spirited and grounded in value, filling a massive void in the midscale category in the U.S. and Canada. Built from a belief that being cost conscious and having a great stay don’t have to be mutually exclusive, Tru by Hilton offers an experience unlike anything in its space, consistently delivered in a surprisingly affordable way. Read more here.
Province Completes Design of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan
Ontario has announced new decisions on the proposed design of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP) -- another step in delivering on its commitment to strengthen retirement income security for the two-thirds of Ontario workers without a secure workplace pension plan. Read more here.
SilverBirch Gives to Charities Across Canada
SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts’ annual Friends in Need holiday campaign raised $36,040 for charities across Canada.
During the holiday season, 10 participating SilverBirch hotels offered guests special holiday rates, with $10 from each room booked during the week of December 21-27 going towards each hotel’s local charity of choice. Read more here.
Silver Hotel Group Extends A “Heart-warming” Welcome!
Employees of the Hilton Garden Inn – Toronto Airport, a member of the Silver Hotel Group, proudly displays the discontinued duvets and linens that were recently donated to 50 new Syrian families arriving in Canada. Read more here.
6 Steps and 4 Suggestions to Prepare for January’s Machine Safety Blitz and Beyond
Prepare for a January 18 to February 26, 2016 inspection blitz on the safe operation of machinery. The blitz will focus on machines that are not guarded, blocked or locked out during maintenance, repair and other operations. “If it were my workplace,” says WSPS consultant Robert Vomiero, “I’d immediately take steps to control high-risk hazards, and then plot an ongoing hazard control strategy.”
Machinery injuries have been a prevention priority since the dawn of the industrial age, but workers continue to sustain injuries with disturbing frequency. Read more here.
Peter Eriksson Appointed New GM of the Hilton Mississauga Meadowvale
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Peter Eriksson as general manager of the Hilton Mississauga Meadowvale located in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. Peter will be responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of this 374-room convention-style hotel featuring over 40,000 square feet of flexible meeting space nestled on 15 acres of beautifully landscaped parkland of the Meadowvale Business Park, only 15 minutes from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, one of North America’s busiest hubs. Read more here.
InterContinental Toronto Yorkville Names Gerasimos Ferentinos as New GM
Gerasimos Ferentinos has been appointed General Manager of the InterContinental Toronto Yorkville, bringing over 15 years of operations and finance experience within the hospitality industry. Read more here.
Ontario Retirement Pension Plan Administration Corporation Appoints CEO
The Initial Board of the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan Administration Corporation (ORPP AC) and the Government of Ontario are pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Saäd Rafi as the first Chief Executive Officer of the ORPP AC.
Mr. Rafi was most recently the Chief Executive Officer of the TO2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee, responsible for the delivery of one of the largest and most successful sporting events in Canadian history. Read more here.
Brampton's Culture Days Celebrations rank 3rd in top 10 large Canadian cities
Each year, the Culture Days national organization releases a ranking of the Top Ten Cities and Towns according to the number of Culture Days activities it hosts. In 2015, the City of Brampton placed third nationally in cities with a population of 500,000 and over. Read more here.
Province Seeking Public Input to Help Develop the 2016 Ontario Budget
Ontario is seeking input from individuals, organizations, and businesses, across the province to help shape Ontario's upcoming budget. For more information, click here.
Ontario Introduces New Accessible Parking Permits
Ontario is introducing new accessible parking permits designed to increase security and prevent misuse.
Beginning this week, ServiceOntario will be issuing accessible parking permits with enhanced security features that make them easier to verify and more difficult to duplicate. These changes apply to new permits only. Read more here.
Toronto is #7 in the New York Times: 52 Places to Go in 2016
Toronto is remaking itself as Canada’s premier city. Ranked number seven on the New York Times 52 Places to visit in 2016. Read more here.
Ontario Adds 34,900 Jobs in December
Ontario's economy continues to create jobs and grow, with 34,900 jobs added in December. This brings the total increase in employment since the recessionary low in June 2009 to 588,100. Read more here.
National tourism indicators, third quarter 2015
Tourism spending in Canada rose 1.1% in the third quarter, after increasing 0.7% in the previous quarter. This was the 10th consecutive quarterly gain in tourism spending and the largest increase since the second quarter of 2014. See report here.
HAC Announces Awards of Excellence Recipients
The Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) has announced the winners of its 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence. See winners list here.
Silver Hotel Group Strikes Gold in the fight Against Hunger!
The statistics are staggering. Each year, over 800,000 Canadians turn to food banks in the month of December. Over 30% are children. Sadly, 15% of the food banks across Canada run out of food each year before the need can be met.
The Silver Hotel Group, in its ongoing commitment to making a difference in each of its hotel communities across Canada, is pleased to announce that their annual “Food For Thought” food drive netted over 6 TONS of food during the 2 week campaign this past December! Read more here.
Toronto’s Omni King Edward Hotel Primes Itself for a New Beginning
As the oldest hotel in Toronto, the King Edward is steeped in history and tradition. Opened in 1903 at a cost of $6 million, the iconic hotel was built by George Gooderham, a developer and wealthy Torontonian. Through its storied history, it has played host to royalty, dignitaries and a mix of celebrities.
Thanks to a $40-million renovation, the hotel now sports upgrades to its 301 guestrooms and suites as well as its meeting and dining rooms. The team is hoping the investment will return the storied hotel to its former glory and set the stage for its next chapter. Read more here.
Sheraton Gateway donates almost $4,700 to SickKids Hospital
n late December, the team at Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Toronto International Airport visited the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto to present a cheque for $4,678.10.
The hotel team raised the money during the preceding four weeks through food sales at the employee cafeteria, bake sales, a spa day for associates and raffle from the hotel’s holiday celebration. Read more here.
GTAA Aviation Activity Report for October 2015 is now available
The October 2015 Aviation Activity Report is now available for your information and reference. Results from September are combined and these are reflected in the YTD totals shown in the report. Click here to see report.
Connecting America: Co-op Marketing Program
There are over 19 million Americans in 12 US cities with direct air access to Canada who are keen to visit us in the next 2 years. With your help, our new Connecting America Co-op Marketing Program is going to turn these dreamers into actual visitors.
Connecting America is Destination Canada’s new marketing initiative launching in the US in the spring of 2016. Together with businesses and destinations across the country, we’re ready to invite American travellers to Look Up and see Canada as their next destination. Read more here.
Adam Aron Resigns as CEO of Starwood
Thomas B. Mangas is set to become the new CEO of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., effective Dec. 31.
Mangas — who currently serves as the company’s EVP and CFO — takes on the new role in the wake of current CEO Adam Aron’s resignation. Aron is leaving Starwood at the end of the month to become CEO and president of AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. Read more here.
Four Seasons Announces Peter Nowlan As Executive Vice President And Chief Marketing Officer
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, the world's leading luxury hospitality company, announced today that Peter Nowlan has been appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. Read more here.
Current Performance Indicators October 2015
The Ministry’s Current Performance Indicators have been updated with October 2015 data, click here.
Ontario Appoints New Chair to Lead Accessibility Advisory Council
Province Continues to Build Towards an Accessible Ontario by 2025
Ontario has appointed Rich Donovan as the new Chair of the province's Accessibility Standards Advisory Council (ASAC).
The Council is responsible for providing high-level strategic advice to the Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure on matters related to the implementation of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005. Read more here.
Announcing the 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence Recipients
The Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) is pleased to announce the 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence winners. Among these winners under the Humanitarian category is Scott Allison, Vice President, Owner & Franchise Relations & Operations, Marriott Hotels of Canada.
The Hall of Fame Awards Program was developed by the HAC to recognize those of its members (individuals, companies or properties) that have demonstrated significant accomplishments, exemplary leadership and tireless commitment to Canada's lodging industry. Read press release here.
AccorHotels to Acquire Three Iconic Hotel Brands - Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel
AccorHotels announces the signing of an agreement with the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) of Saudi Arabia and Oxford Properties, an Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) company for the acquisition of FRHI Holdings Ltd (FRHI), parent of Fairmont, Raffles, and Swissôtel. Read press release here.
Ontario Nominates New WSIB President
Ontario has nominated Thomas Teahen as President of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).
As WSIB President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Teahen would head up one of North America's largest workers' compensation systems and promoters of workplace health and safety. Mr. Teahen would succeed David Marshall who will begin his new role as Special Advisor to the Minister of Finance in February 2016. Read more here.
Ontario Launches New Sport Hosting Program
Ontario is launching a renewed Sport Hosting Program, which will help bring major sporting events to the province, grow local economies and allow more Ontario athletes to compete at home. Read more here.
Park Hyatt Toronto Presents Grant to Local School
The Park Hyatt Toronto presented William Tredway Jr. Public School in Scarborough, Ont. with US$8,000 to help develop nutrition education and programming.
The donation is part of the Hyatt Community Grants program, which encourages hotels around the world to identify and nominate local non-profits for funding consideration. Since 2008, Hyatt hotels have helped direct more than $2.35 million to 197 non-profits in 43 countries around the world. Read more here.
New Western Canada appointments for Fairmont
Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has named a number of new appointments recently, including several at its properties throughout Western Canada.
Among these is Robert Lemieux who was recently appointed as Regional Director of Sales & Marketing for Central Canada and Fairmont Royal York. Read more here.
Jonathan Lund named IHG regional VP, Canada franchise performance support
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) announced on Nov.17 the appointment of Jonathan Lund as regional vice-president, Canada franchise performance support. In this role, Lund will oversee the operations of IHG’s 165 franchised hotels across Canada. Read more here.
September 2015 Tourism Snapshot
Destination Canada has just released the September 2015 Tourism Snapshot, click here.
Current Performance Indicators September 2015
The Ministry’s Current Performance Indicators have been updated with September 2015 data, click here.
Toronto's King Edward Hotel Sold to Omni Hotels
Omni Hotels & Resorts today announced that it has fully acquired The Omni King Edward Hotel, Toronto’s first and iconic luxury hotel. Omni Hotels & Resorts has been managing and operating the hotel since August 1, 2013. With this transaction, the company will take on the ownership, operations and management of the iconic property. Read more here.
Employer premium reductions, sustainable benefits for injured workers on the horizon
Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is well ahead of a legislated timetable to reach financial sustainability, which will result in lower premiums paid by employers who fund the system and long-term security for the workers who depend on it, WSIB Chair Elizabeth Witmer announced today. On current projections, the WSIB anticipates average rate reductions of between 10 and 15 per cent are possible over a five year period, starting in 2017, according to the WSIB’s 2015 Economic Statement released Monday. The GTHA's President & CEO Terry Mundell acts as Chair of the General Business Advisory Committee who has been very active on this file with WSIB. We look forward to the announcement on the rate reductions and continuing to work with the WSIB to represent the interests of GTHA Members.
“Once the burden of the UFL is gone, employer premiums will consist only of new claims and administrative costs,” Witmer said. “That’s an estimated average premium rate of $1.40 to $1.50 instead of the current average $2.46 per $100 of payroll, making Ontario one of the lowest cost jurisdictions in Canada.” Read press release here.
New Travel Report Reveals U.S. Spending in Canada by State and Other International Spending Patterns
Canada's tourism industry experienced a healthy summer with international Visa cardholders spending $3.6USD billion in Canada, according to the 2015 Summer Travel Snapshot
released by Visa Canada and the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC). For the first time, the uniquely detailed report broke down U.S. spending by state revealing that California, New York and Washington were the top source markets. Read more here.
Province Helping Vulnerable Workers Collect Unpaid Wages
New changes to Ontario's employment laws come into effect to better protect precarious and foreign workers.
Starting November 20th, 2015, the Employment Standards Act, 2000
will be amended to allow individuals who are hired through a temporary help agency to recover unpaid wages from both the agency and the agency's client-business, where the agency has not paid the wages. Read more here.
UP Express: Complimentary Ticket Voucher
Print and redeem this voucher for 1 complimentary adult one-way ticket when you buy 1 adult one-way ticket ($27.50) for immediate travel on UP Express between Toronto Pearson International Airport and Union Station. Purchase your ticket in person at the UP Express Guest Services Desk at Pearson Airport or Union Station. Offer expires January 31, 2016.* Click here for voucher.
Robert Lemieux Appointed as Regional Director of Sales & Marketing at Fairmont Royal York
Edwin Frizzell, Regional Vice President and General Manager at Fairmont Royal York is pleased to announce the appointment of Robert Lemieux as Regional Director of Sales & Marketing effective November 1, 2015. Robert will be responsible for successfully managing the strategic marketing and sales initiatives for the properties of the Central Canada Region. Read more here.
Marriott CEO: Starwood Deal Will Accelerate Our Globalization
Marriott International and Starwood Hotels and Resorts signed a $12.2 billion deal on Sunday to combine the two companies and create the world’s largest hotel company.
Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson appeared on CNBC’s Squawk Box to provide the first non-press release answers about the deal. Read more here.
Announcing the Winners of the 2015 Ontario Tourism Awards of Excellence
The best of the best in Ontario tourism were celebrated at the annual Ontario Tourism Awards of Excellence Gala on Tuesday, Nov. 10 in Toronto. The Ontario Tourism Awards of Excellence recognize industry successes by acknowledging those who have made significant contributions to Ontario's tourism industry. Read more here.
Deanna Jean Patawaran now Senior Sales Manager at SpringHill Suites by Marriott Toronto Vaughan
Deanna Jean Patawaran is now the Senior Sales Manager for the All Suites Hotel in Vaughan – SpringHill Suites by Marriott Toronto Vaughan.
Sheraton Centre Toronto names Michael Farquharson hotel manager
Sheraton Centre Toronto announced on Nov. 5 the appointment of Michael Farquharson as hotel manager. This marks his return to Toronto and Sheraton Centre Toronto after a number of senior hotel leadership positions in North America with Starwood Hotels and Resorts. Read more here.
Ontario PCs seek to regulate Uber, AirBnB and the sharing economy province-wide
Tim Hudak, the former leader of the provincial Progressive Conservatives, wants to create province-wide guidelines for ride-sharing services such as Uber, home-sharing websites such as AirBnB and HomeAway and the growing number of parking-spot sharing apps, such as the Toronto-made Rover. Should the bill pass, Ontario would be the first province to regulate the sharing economy in Canada. Read more here.
Omni King Edward names David Han Director, F&B
The Omni King Edward, in downtown Toronto, announced in early November the appointment of David Han as Director of Food and Beverage.Read more here.