Connect with us


Tourism And Hospitality Generates Highest-Ever Economic Impact of $19 Billion in 2022



In a remarkable rebound, the San Antonio tourism and hospitality industry shattered key performance metrics, surpassing pre-pandemic levels with an unprecedented economic impact of $19 billion – a 10% year-over-year increase. The findings, identified by Trinity University professors Richard V. Butler, Ph.D., and Mary E. Stefl, Ph.D., in a study commissioned by Visit San Antonio, the San Antonio Hotel & Lodging Association, the Texas Restaurant Association—San Antonio Chapter and the San Antonio Visitors Alliance, underscore the sector’s undeniable resilience, vitality and importance to the San Antonio region. 

Part of the industry’s historic economic impact includes a notable boost in contributions to the city’s local taxes and fees, soaring to an impressive $262 million. San Antonio has become a beacon of hope, recovering faster than many cities across the United States, as a separate visitation study by renowned national research company, D.K. Shifflet, found that San Antonio attracted 34.8 million visitors and employed over 140,000 individuals – nearly a 10% increase from 2021 figures. 

“There is so much more work to be done, and Visit San Antonio remains steadfast in its commitment to rejuvenating our city’s tourism and hospitality sector, aiming to restore hotel occupancy, city visitation and tourism-supported jobs to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2024 or even sooner,” said Marc Anderson, President and CEO of Visit San Antonio. “The latest record-breaking news of over $19 billion in economic impact and $262 million in city tax revenues for 2022 is immensely gratifying and promises a bright future for our city and its residents.” 

With more than 100 new restaurants and a dozen new hotels opening since the onset of the pandemic, the industry’s total payroll has surged beyond 2019 levels, reinforcing its position as one of the top five economic drivers in the San Antonio region. 

“This is not only a win for our city, but it is a win for the citizens of San Antonio. The positive impact our tourism and hospitality industry has had on our local economy since the start of the pandemic is tremendous,” said Ron Nirenberg, Mayor of the City of San Antonio. “It showcases the remarkable efforts to tell San Antonio’s story to the world.” 

This robust growth exemplifies the unwavering power of tourism and hospitality in shaping the city’s profile and status as the fastest-growing big city in the United States. Visit San Antonio Board Chair, Phil Stamm, emphasized the vital role of tourism and hospitality as key economic drivers and job creators. 

“While we celebrate surpassing pre-pandemic benchmarks in crucial categories, we must unite to further increase business demand in both leisure and meetings and conventions,” Stamm said. “Our industry’s impact extends far beyond San Antonio, generating revenue that propels our city to compete economically with other metro districts.” 

Professors Butler and Stefl’s study lauded the industry’s “impressive” performance in 2022. In response, Visit San Antonio continues to spearhead innovative marketing initiatives, enticing leisure and business travelers from around the globe. The city’s iconic attractions and culinary offerings are being showcased, reaffirming San Antonio’s status as a global destination with immense economic potential. 


San Antonio Airport Ranked #2 in U.S. by The Wall Street Journal



San Antonio International Airport (SAT) is ranked #2 on The Wall Street Journal’s (WSJ) list of Best Midsize Airports for 2023. SAT jumped up two spots from last year’s #4 ranking and only missed the number one spot by less than a point.

The newspaper’s annual U.S. Airport Rankings rate the 50 busiest airports based on reliability, value and convenience. SAT’s overall score is 70.4, behind San José Mineta International Airport in California, which scored 71.2.

“This is spectacular news about SAT being ranked #2,” said Jesus Saenz, Director of Airports, San Antonio Airport System. “We are always aiming to be the #1 airport. We are so close! Being ranked second best airport shows we are doing a stellar job serving our travelers. We are so proud of our entire team. Their passion for helping people and our strong partnerships with our airlines help us stand out. We’ve had a phenomenal year. We’re up to 45 nonstop destinations – including our first flights to Europe that start in May 2024.”

The WSJ evaluates each airport on 30 factors. Information is gathered from government data and traveler surveys to account for the entire process – from buying a ticket to arriving at a destination. The rankings highlight which airports have the most on-time flights, short waits throughout a traveler’s trip and their favorite amenities.

According to the WSJ, the San Antonio airport ranked:

  • #1 for fast security clearance
  • #2 for taxi/rideshare
  • #6 for flight cancellation

For more information about the rankings, please visit WSJ’s website.

To learn more about San Antonio airport, visit the airport’s website.

Continue Reading

Black Life Texas

San Antonio’s Plan to Use Solar to Help the Environment



The San Antonio City Council recently approved the largest on-site solar project by a local Texas government. The $30 million project will install rooftop, parking, and park canopy solar photovoltaic (PV) systems at 42 city facilities. 

The City’s newly approved services agreement with local developer Big Sun Solar will also make progress toward San Antonio’s 2040 goal of zero net energy for all municipal buildings.

San Antonio’s innovative multi-site deal will result in energy and cost savings, shade and weather protection and local jobs.  

  • Energy and Cost Savings: The projected electricity generated annually from the 42 sites is expected to offset an estimated 11% of the City’s electricity consumption from its buildings.
  • Shade and Weather Protection: 23 of the installations will be parking canopies that will power on-site municipal operations and provide shade and hail protection to people and vehicles. 
  • Local Jobs: Big Sun Solar estimates this will create more than 15 full-time jobs. The company’s collaboration with the St. Phillip’s College Solar Apprenticeship Program (part of the Alamo Area District of Community Colleges) will train students in solar energy.

“This will be the largest local government on-site solar project in Texas and the second-largest in the nation,” City Manager Erik Walsh said. “The City of San Antonio is setting a new standard in Texas of what is possible to reduce carbon emissions, adapt to climate change, and ensure San Antonio remains a healthy, vibrant City for generations to come.” 

The project will use new Inflation Reduction Act incentives, the State Energy Conservation Office LoanStar low-interest loan and local tax dollars.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg said, “Today’s vote was a big win for San Antonio. The project will reduce the amount of electricity that the city takes from the grid and sets a national example for innovative approaches to reducing carbon emissions and ensuring a healthier future for our community.”   

Solar installations will begin in Spring 2024, with an anticipated completion in Fall 2026.

Continue Reading

Black Life Texas

Most Employees From Racial and Ethnic Groups Have Experienced Workplace Racism



As companies worldwide face opposition to their diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, two-thirds (66%) of employees from marginalized racial and ethnic groups in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States have experienced racism at work during their career, according to a new global report from Catalyst. Half (52%) have experienced racism in their current job.

The report, How Racism Shows Up at Work—And the Antiracist Actions Your Organization Can Take, surveyed over 5,000 women, men, transgender, and nonbinary employees and revealed the pervasive and insidious ways racism exists in the workplace. Catalyst is a global nonprofit supported by many of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women. 

The most common expressions of racism are workplace harassment (48%)—such as racist jokes, slurs, and other derogatory comments—and employment and professional inequities (32%), where respondents experienced pay gaps, were passed over for promotion, or were assigned more or less work than their colleagues based on race.

Participants also report experiencing racism through racial stereotypes and degrading commentary about their bodies or cultures. Stereotypes include assumptions about a person’s intelligence, cleanliness, or language abilities and blame for Covid-19. Women (51%) and men (50%) experienced racism in the workplace to the same degree. Trans and nonbinary employees experienced more racism than others (69%).

Respondents most often named leaders (41%) as the instigators of racism, but co-workers (36%) and customers/clients (23%) also engaged in racist acts. White people initiate four out of five acts of racism, and one out of five are instigated by another non-white person.

Studies show that “Whiteness” is at the center of work contexts. It is used as a lens through which employees, organizational policies, and business strategies are judged, assessed, and valued. This can result in, for example, dress codes that don’t work for natural Black hair or performance assessment criteria that value white modes of leadership over others.

Catalyst offers actionable solutions for leaders to make systemic changes to their organizations: leaders must commit to addressing racism and recognizing how Whiteness is centered in work contexts. Organizations need to enact policies that eliminate racial workplace inequities, such as implementing systems to end bias in hiring, development, and promotion processes and training managers to notice and act when employees experience racism from teammates, customers, or managers. Key steps also include fostering a climate of mutual respect in the workplace, instituting codes of conduct for clients and customers, and understanding emotional tax.

Continue Reading

Hot Topics