SOURCE: The University of New Orleans Hospitality Research Center
IF YOU THINK THE CITY WAS PARTICULARLY TOURIST-THRONGED last year, you're right; the number was the highest since 2004 (before Hurricane Katrina and the federal floods) and a 6.9 percent increase over 2015, according to a study released last week by the University of New Orleans Hospitality Research Center. Tourism officials touted the numbers, with Mayor Mitch Landrieu calling it an "exciting achievement." Visitor spending, according to the study, was $7.41 billion.
Meanwhile, the city's much-touted new short-term rental registration and regulation system is showing fewer results. According to numbers published last week by The Lens, only 384 of the estimated 4,500 Airbnb listings in New Orleans had registered with the city. All short-term rental operators are expected to register by the cutoff date of April 1, according to new laws passed in November by the New Orleans City Council.