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Industry Insider

April 2023


We hope this spring season is blowing success your way. With summer fast approaching, we look forward to welcoming even more visitors to our city and seeing the positive impact of an increase in tourism.

In the coming weeks, we hope you plan to take advantage of the variety of signature events taking place in the city, from the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow and American Indian Week to Albuquerque Isotopes and New Mexico United games to the farmers' and growers' markets sprouting up all over the city. 

This issue of Industry Insider includes a recap of our Global Meetings Industry Day celebration, news about an award for one of our employees, and details about a new opportunity for food and drink vendors at the Albuquerque Sunport.

Thank you for being a Visit Albuquerque Partner.

Tania Armenta 
President & CEO
Visit Albuquerque


Albuquerque’s Meeting Industry Celebrates GMID

More than 100 people gathered in the Albuquerque Convention Center to celebrate Global Meetings Industry Day on March 30. Visit Albuquerque was joined by representatives from the local meetings industry to highlight why #MeetingsMatter to Albuquerque. Visit Albuquerque partnered with the City of Albuquerque, the New Mexico Chapter of Meeting Professionals International (MPI), the Rocky Mountain Chapter of International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE), the New Mexico Society of Association Executives (NMSAE), the Greater Albuquerque Hotel and Lodging Association (GAHLA), the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce and the Albuquerque Convention Center/ASM Global to support #GMID2023.

A group of people stand behind foam letters that spell #GMID2023

Visit Albuquerque President and CEO Tania Armenta speaks at the GMID 2023 event

Visit Albuquerque Welcomes Meeting Planners and Trade Media on FAM Tour

During the first week of April, Visit Albuquerque hosted a familiarization (FAM) tour for out-of-town meeting planners and trade media members. Attendees spent three days immersed in New Mexican culture and unique experiences, while simultaneously visiting some of the city’s best meeting spaces for future events.

During a day steeped in culture, attendees learned about Albuquerque’s rich history and Hispanic roots through a walking tour of Old Town provided by Routes Bicycle Tours & Rentals. The group also visited the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, where they learned about the history and Native American culture of New Mexico’s 19 pueblos, as well as enjoying a delicious lunch at the Indian Pueblo Kitchen.

A group of people stand on the balcony of Level 5

The red carpet was rolled out for participants at the Albuquerque Convention Center, as they were welcomed to a reception of hors d'oeuvres and refreshments, followed by a site tour of the convention center’s meeting and exhibit spaces. The evening was capped off with a tour - through a partnership with Destination Southwest - of Albuquerque’s newest speakeasies and secret lounges, including Z Lounge and Teddy Roe’s.

On the final day of the tour, the group experienced one of Albuquerque’s most famous modes of transportation: a hot air balloon ride. With the help of Rainbow Ryders Hot Air Balloon Ride Co., attendees were treated to breathtaking views in the sky, providing a unique perspective of the city. The group then rode to over 10,000 feet on the Sandia Peak Aerial Tramway before concluding the FAM with a delicious meal at El Pinto New Mexican Restaurant.

Visit Albuquerque Hosts Successful Business Exchange

On April 13, Visit Albuquerque hosted a successful Business Exchange for Partners and prospective Partners at Hotel Zazz. Nob Hill neighborhood businesses participated in an ACE training and then got to network with each other and Visit Albuquerque partners, board and staff members. Thank you to Nob Hill Mainstreet for their partnership during this event, Hotel Zazz and Z Lounge for hosting, M’Tucci’s Bar Roma and Teddy Roe’s for providing appetizers, and Hotel Zazz, Monet’s Skin Studio, Rainbow Ryders and the Turquoise Museum for providing raffle gifts.

The next Business Exchange will take place June 1 at El Vado. An RSVP link will be sent out soon!

A group of people network at the April 2023 Business Exchange

Tourism Grant Applications Due This Week

Applications for the Visit Albuquerque Tourism Grant Program are due April 28. The program’s goal is to spark innovative ideas that contribute to Albuquerque’s vibrancy and build new, creative visitor and resident experiences that grow a more diverse and thriving tourism economy.

Two types of funding are available for the 2023 grant cycle. Applicants for Innovator grants can apply for up to $50,000 for project implementation. A 1:1 funding match is required for the amount requested. Applicants for Incubator grants can apply for up to $10,000 for project implementation. Two letters of support are required for Incubator applications.

The program is funded by revenue generated by the Albuquerque Tourism Marketing District. To learn more about the Tourism Grant Program and to apply, click here.

An illustrated image of Albuquerque with Tourism Grant Program logo

Social Media Specialist Lara Brockway Named Emerging Tourism Star

The eTourism Summit named Visit Albuquerque social media specialist Lara Brockway an Emerging Tourism Star. She was recognized this month at the eTourism Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she participated in a panel along with the six other emerging tourism stars. This year’s Emerging Tourism Stars also will be directly connected with a travel and tourism leader as a mentor, will be featured in a custom email that is distributed to the eTS database and will have the opportunity to fill the eTS Emerging Tourism Star Advisory Board seat.

The five winners of the eTourism Summit Emerging Tourism stars hold their awards on stage, including Visit Albuquerque's social media specialist Lara Brockway

Albuquerque Sports Commission Attends Connect Sports Spring Marketplace

Earlier this month, Senior Sports Development Manager Angela Gandy and Director of Sports Development Angie Jepsen attended the Connect Sports Spring Marketplace in Las Vegas, Nevada. They had 40 appointments with sporting event organizers and attended an NCAA seminar to learn more on how to best position Albuquerque to secure NCAA championships.

Angie and Angela stand with three other people for Spring Connect Marketplace

Register Now for the NMHA Governor’s Conference

Don't forget to register for the New Mexico Hospitality Association’s Governor’s Conference. The conference will take place May 8-10 in Las Cruces. Join industry leaders for education, celebration and networking. Presentations include topics on sales, marketing, tourism development, workforce and more. Plus, conference attendees will have a chance to tour Spaceport America!

There are different registration options to best fit you and your business. Register now to reserve your spot!

Albuquerque Sunport Searching for New Food and Drink Vendors

The Albuquerque Sunport wants prospective food and drink vendors to apply to be a part of the overhauled concessions program. The Sunport has issued a request for proposals for new vendors, including local businesses, to submit their ideas for food and drink options. The RFP is open until June 30. For more details, click here.

The Sunport is expected to send an RFP for retail vendors this summer. The Sunport is in the middle of a multi-year renovation project that crews are hoping to have mostly finished by the end of 2024.

Upcoming Meetings and Sports Events

In May 2023, more than 13,200 people will participate in meetings and sports events booked and supported by Visit Albuquerque. These events will generate an estimated $5.58 million in direct spend and include:


Group Name

Est. Attendance

Meeting Location

Est. Direct Spending

May 3-5

American Membrane Technology Association and Southwest Membrane Operator Association Technology Transfer Workshop


Embassy Suites by Hilton Albuquerque


May 3-6

American Defenders of Bataan & Corregidor Inc. Annual Convention


Sheraton Albuquerque Uptown


May 3-6

New Mexico Activities Association State Tennis Championships


Jerry Cline Park


May 3-7

USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships


Various Locations


May 3-7

Rio Grande Valley Celtic Festival And Highland Games


Balloon Fiesta Park


May 7-11

USS Charles S. Sperry DD-697 Association Reunion


Sheraton Albuquerque Airport Hotel


May 8-9

New Mexico Activities Association State Golf Championships


Albuquerque Golf Courses


May 9-10

Electric Power Research Institute Gas Turbine Process Compensated Resonance Testing Forum


Hotel Andaluz


May 15-19

Mastiff Club of America National Specialty


Albuquerque Marriott Pyramid North


May 16-20

New Mexico Dental Association Annual Conference


Albuquerque Convention Center


May 19-21

New Mexico Special Olympics State Games


UNM Campus


May 24-28

Human Anatomy & Physiology Society Annual Conference


Albuquerque Convention Center


May 26-28

USA BMX Spring Nationals


Duke City BMX


Please help welcome these visitors and groups to Albuquerque!