News release

Eyes on Louisville for tourism rebound and strong growth as 10-year plan unveiled

JLL’s Tourism Advisory team partnered with Louisville Tourism to develop a plan for increased visitation as the city was poised for exponential growth pre-pandemic 

January 11, 2021

SAN FRANCISCO, January 11, 2021 – JLL Hotels & Hospitality’s Tourism Advisory team recently partnered with Louisville Tourism, the city’s official Destination Marketing Organization, to develop a 10-year plan for the future of Louisville as a destination and bringing visitors and increased spending into the city.

The partnership between Louisville Tourism and JLL began in 2019 to develop the first metro-wide Destination Strategic Plan with a goal to generate 25 million visitors to the city by 2030. JLL crafted a four-phase master plan utilizing broad-based stakeholder engagement, market studies and custom solutions for tourism industry growth for the City of Louisville. The priorities that resulted from the plan include recommendations around Mobility & Connectivity, Workforce Development, Product Development, Neighborhood Preservation and Development, Bourbon Connection, Economic Development and Policies for Sustainable Growth.

“Louisville is a resilient city with incredible leadership in the tourism and hospitality sectors,” said Dan Fenton, Executive Vice President in JLL’s Hotels & Hospitality Group and Tourism Advisory team lead.   “This is evidenced by the fact that Louisville Tourism remained committed to planning for future growth, even throughout the pandemic, and is further supported by the industry that participated in the long-range planning process. Because of this, we are further convinced that Louisville will recover at a quicker pace and hit its target of 25 million visitors by 2030.”

The plan, which also supports Louisville’s “Build Back Better Together” campaign, also enforces that Louisville is primed for a strong rebound, highlighting that the city was poised for growth pre-pandemic. Between 2015 and 2019, RevPAR increased by a compounded annual growth rate of 1.7% underpinned by a strong ADR growth.

“About 15% of travel to Louisville is driven by Bourbon Country,” continues Fenton. “Bourbon City highly impacts tourism and holds immense historic value. Bourbon is a key product and component of the city’s ‘brand,’ along with sustainability, continued community impact and development opportunities.”

Now more than ever, “brand” is an imperative part of tourism rebounding with an enhanced focus on cleanliness, being hand-in-hand with sustainability and the commitment to serving communities and rebuilding through attention to local development opportunities.

“We are proud of where Louisville has come as a city and a destination for visitors,” says Karen Williams, President and CEO of Louisville Tourism. “This Destination Strategic Plan will further our industry’s recovery and sustain our momentum through 2030.”

JLL’s Tourism & Destination Advisory team drives strategic plans to support growth in the visitor economy, meetings and conventions industry and quality of place as part of JLL’s Hotels & Hospitality Group in municipalities and cities across the nation. Leveraging stakeholder and industry feedback, research and strategic support, JLL offers a personalized approach to capitalize on tourism markets. 

JLL’s Hotels & Hospitality Group is responsible for the largest share of hospitality transaction value, totaling $83 billion worldwide. The group’s 350-strong global team in over 20 countries also closed more than 7,350 advisory, valuation and asset management assignments. Our hotel valuation, brokerage, asset management and consultancy services have helped more hotel investors, owners and operators achieve high returns on their assets than any other real estate advisor in the world.

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About JLL

JLL (NYSE: JLL) is a leading professional services firm that specializes in real estate and investment management. JLL shapes the future of real estate for a better world by using the most advanced technology to create rewarding opportunities, amazing spaces and sustainable real estate solutions for our clients, our people and our communities. JLL is a Fortune 500 company with annual revenue of $18.0 billion in 2019, operations in over 80 countries and a global workforce of over 92,000 as of September 30, 2020. JLL is the brand name, and a registered trademark, of Jones Lang LaSalle Incorporated. For further information, visit