Press release from the mayor’s office
Mayor Sylvester Turner, Houston First Corp., and Greater Houston Partnership Lead Economic Development Mission to Mexico
The delegation will focus on global trade, tourism, business and leisure travel between Houston and Mexico
March 28, 2022 — Mayor Sylvester Turner, Houston First Corp.and the Greater Houston Partnership will lead an economic development mission to Mexico from March 28 to April 1, with stops in Monterrey and Mexico City.
The delegation is joined by strategic partners, Houston Airport System and United Airlines, as part of an aggressive strategy to strengthen Houston’s position as the premier city for global commerce, tourism, business and travel. approval from Mexico.
As part of the activations, the delegation and strategic partners will meet with the Mexican Secretary of Tourism, Governor Samuel Alejandro Garcia Sepúlveda of Nuevo León, Mayor Donaldo Colosio Riojas of Monterrey, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Roberto Velasco, as well as in as large travel/tour operators and meeting professionals.
Members of the delegation will also participate in the signing of a memorandum of understanding or memorandum of understanding to strengthen the existing ties between the state of Nuevo León and the city of Houston.
“Houston consistently ranks among the top markets for international companies looking to establish or strengthen ties in the United States. With an active port, a talented and diverse workforce, and continued development in sectors such as healthcare, life sciences and technology, the city is a hub of innovation and development. We look forward to strengthening our ties with Mexico and emphasizing Houston’s global position as a prime location for business and enterprise,” said Mayor Turner.
As Houston’s largest trading partner, Mexico plays an important role in the city’s economy. In areas such as manufacturing and food products, Mexico and Texas have created such economic concentration in these sectors that many Mexico-based companies have been driven to open facilities in the Lone Star State, according to the Texas Economic. Development Corporation.
“We are lucky to live in a destination where people from all over the world populate the city. As we seek to sustainably increase the number of visitors from Mexico to Houston, the influx of new ideas and influences will only enhance the incredible mosaic of cultures that already exists here,” said the President and CEO. of Houston First Corp. Michael Heckman noted.
Mexico is also Houston’s largest market for international visits. According to a 2020 report by Travel Marketing Insights Inc., Houston received approximately 3.4 million international travelers, with Mexico accounting for 70% of those visitors. The report also indicates that Mexican visitors contributed US$913 million in total direct spending while visiting Houston. (source: Travel Markets Insights Inc. July 2020).
“Houston Airports’ already strong relationship with Mexico has grown even stronger during the pandemic,” said Houston Airports Director Mario Diaz. “Today we have more flights to Mexico than in 2019 and Bush Airport continues to offer more flights to Mexico than any other airport in the United States. Houston is one of the top markets for United States by the number of Mexican destinations served and the number of Mexican visitors received per year.This economic development mission will nurture our strategic partnership with Mexico, which is vital for our airports and our city.
A study by Expedia Global Research shows that Houston ranked first among U.S. booked cities in the first quarter of 2021. Increased competition in the market, however, has affected searches for 2022 and the creation of awareness for Houston. in Mexico will be essential to generate continued interest. back to pre-covid levels.
“With more than 70 years of service to the southeast Texas area, United is proud to be Houston’s local airline,” said Doreen Burse, senior vice president of worldwide sales for United Airlines. “As the country’s gateway to Latin America and Houston’s largest carrier to Mexico, serving the market for more than five decades, we are honored to have played a vital role in organizing the trips for the city’s trade mission to Mexico – helping to connect Houston to the world. , and the world to Houston.
Strengthening Houston’s position as a premier destination for business, travel and tourism will create a multi-city market activation known as “Houston Week.” The inaugural event includes a myriad of diplomatic and public relations efforts, business development, corporate meetings and travel, and social activations before culminating in an experiential evening showcasing the best of Houston.
The hallmark of Houston Week will be “Hola Houston,” a dynamic sensory and culinary experience curated to reintroduce and excite attendees about all things Houston.
Taking place inside Zanq on March 29 in the Valle Oriente area of San Pedro Garza García in Nuevo León, and later that week on March 31 at the Centro Cultural Estacion Indianilla in Mexico City, guests will have the opportunity to engage with some of James Beard’s most iconic artists, designers, mixologists and award-winning chefs. This dynamic showcase includes:
- Chef Hugo Ortega: Owner and executive chef of four of Houston’s finest restaurants, including Backstreet Café, URBE and Caracol. He was named Best Chef: Southwest by the prestigious James Beard Foundation.
- Chef Rubén Ortega: Pastry chef for the H-Town restaurant group. His decadent creations at Xochi in Houston earned him a spot as a 2022 Semi-Finalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef by the James Beard Foundation.
- Chief Kiran Verma: Recognized as the “godmother of Indian gastronomy”, Chef Kiran’s restaurant is known for serving Indian hospitality with French sophistication and American informality.
- Chief Chris Williams: Winning numerous accolades for his Southern-style cuisine, Chef Chris continues to use influences from around the world to curate his menu at Lucille.
- Mixologist Chris Morrisis a four-time national finalist in prestigious cocktail competitions and has won numerous regional awards. Her creative take on the classic paloma at chef Nikki Tran’s Viet-Cajun restaurant, Kau Ba, is the perfect example of Houston’s mixed culture.
- Demola the violinist: A Lagos native turned Houstonian is an acclaimed artist, songwriter, producer and violinist who combines Afrobeats, pop, hip-hop and Reggae into thrilling fusion covers. His performances have been featured on the 2021 State of the City in Houston and James Beard Awards program.
Art + Fashion
- Magpies and peacocks: Located in the heart of Houston, it is the only American non-profit design house dedicated to the collection and sustainable reuse of post-consumer clothing, textile waste and accessories diverted from landfills.
- David Maldonado: Recognized as @capdavjon on Instagram, David is a Houston-based multidisciplinary artist who celebrates the vibrant stories of his community through public art. His eye-catching pieces can be seen in neighborhoods and tall buildings across the city.
Following the launch of Houston Week, Houston First Corp. will roll out a national marketing and branding campaign in Mexico that will be featured in publications such as Forbes, Robb Report, GQ, Vouge, Conde Nast, Reforma, Food & Wine, Life & Style and Expedia, among others.
“Our creative campaign, ‘Vibra Global Que Inspira’ presents a unified brand proposition for tourism, economic development, investment attraction, talent attraction and quality of life that celebrates authenticity and attractiveness. of our great city,” adds Heckman.
Later this year, Houston will also be gearing up to launch its first US-Mexico City Travel Fest, a weekend-long celebration held inside the city’s George R. Brown Convention Center from October 28-30. The event will welcome more than 35 destinations from Mexico and the United States and nearly 20,000 visitors looking for their next vacation.