Gretchen Hall, CEO of the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau, says that new attractions, investments and renovations are repositioning central Arkansas to outside travelers and state residents.
Appearing on Talk Business Arkansas, Hall said that a new investment by Entergy Arkansas to light three downtown bridges and an upcoming two-year renovation of Robinson auditorium will bring fresh energy to downtown Little Rock and give tourism officials a new venue for convention business.
The Marriott Hotel taking over the Peabody Hotel brand is also going to stoke new looks at the capital city, which has a new branding campaign aimed at drawing visitors for conventions to experience Arkansas’ Southern charm.
“We really saw ourselves at this crossroads. Since the Clinton Library opened, the face of Little Rock has completed changed,” Hall said. “We’re really a different destination than we were a decade ago.”
“Our new branding is going to be all about training our hospitality people to touch the visitors and the guests. It is going to be about bringing us back to that Southern hospitality root of being very charming and hospitable and welcoming. It’s really all about creating engaging experiences with our people who touch our visitors,” she added.
Hall says that central Arkansas is seeing an increase in its convention business, but it may be a decade away from needing to consider new or expanded facilities.
Watch her full interview below.